Just Hug Him!

PARENTING | | December 22, 2008 at 8:23 am
With a snow storm in the forecast it was already going to be an adventurous day. After arriving home from a playdate and putting the younger child down for a nap I managed to somehow cut myself with a glass. Typical mom, instead of dealing with the injury, I was trying to sweep up the fragments so that my older daughter would not step onto any. Amidst all the chaos I managed to make a mess dropping blood on the floor alarming her. When I mentioned to her that mama had a ‘boo-boo” she immediately disappeared, and promptly appeared in her “doctor” garb, declaring that she would “make it all better”. Knowing that I would need some medical attention and the sight if the flurries start to appear was beginning to make me nervous. I opted out of going to the Emergency Room and settled for a Walk-In-Clinic instead, assuming there would be a shorter wait time. I was wrong. After finding out that the previous patients had already been waiting for 3 hours, I decided to make myself comfy (well as comfortable as you can get in a waiting room, sporting an injury).

The weather worsened outside and though it was predicted to be 18 inches, it already looked to be much more than that. For some reason there were plenty of children with injuries at the time. One such child, a young boy (maybe around 6 or 7 years old) caught my eye. He was sobbing the most silent cry ever, obviously in pain, while his dad (I assume) just sat there reading a magazine. I just wanted to hit him (the father, not the son). I am not sure if it was the mommy in me, but I was so angry I could not tear my eyes away from the boy. At some point I think the dad noticed it and then gave his son an annoyed gaze, as if to say “don’t draw attention to yourself”, or “cry quieter”. This seemed to just try and shush the boy but made me much angrier. What was wrong with this man? This child obviously needed some comfort. Much later I was pleased to see (for whatever reason) the man cave in and give his son a quick hug (did I say quick, I meant super quick). I would have loved to see more but I was happy to see any affection offered to the boy. It clearly made a difference to the boy. And then he returned promptly to his paper (grrrr….) while the boy sobbed a little less loudly.


Later, it was not the awful weather outside, or my newly stitched finger that saddened me, it was the memory of the little boy yearning for some affection. Why on earth does it have to take an effort to hug? Would have been different had it been a daughter? Is it unmanly to display or accept affection?

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7 Comments

  1. 1
    Kristie says:

    It is so sad that some kids do not get that love and affection from a parent. Unfortunately a lot of times it doesn’t come from a father and lots of times it doesn’t got to a boy. That is sad. Little boys need love and affection from their fathers. Especially from their fathers!

    Thank God my son has a father who would have had him in his lap and played with him to try to keep his mind off his hurts.

  2. 2
    Meagan Francis says:

    Aw, that makes me sad. I know my husband isn't always as quick to show affection as I am (it doesn't seem to come naturally to him) but I certainly hope he wouldn't ignore a crying & in pain child, or worse, act annoyed by him!

  3. 3
    kitrona says:

    The only thing I can figure is maybe the dad was squicked out by being in a medical setting, but even then, come ON, dude. Once you have kids, it’s no longer about YOU, it’s all about THEM; put down the paper and pay attention to the poor kid!

  4. 4
    Tara @ Feels like home says:

    This sort of thing makes me so sad. Even worse, when the parent is being mean to the child, which I have seen plenty of. I wish people in general could just be nicer to one another.

  5. 5
    Mommy Niri says:

    I know several dads that do display affection (so this is not a slur on dad at all) so I was particularly taken aback when this dad did not. Especially at a time like this!

  6. 6
    Melitsa says:

    Glad to hear your finger is fixed what a lovely thing your daughter did.
    As for the dad, I can see how that could happen. Just as you were worried about the weather, maybe he was annoyed. His son did the thing he’s been saying not to do and now the nightmare happened and here we are at the Urgent care. When you’re cross/annoyed empathy is far away-right? I have no idea but it’s what came to mind when I read your post. I would have hugged him no matter what- even if I was mad but it’s a little different for some guys.

  7. 7
    MoreThanMommy says:

    Stories like this make me so sad… My husband is forever hugging the kids! This reminds me of something that happened a couple of years ago. Hubby and I went to breakfast and were seated across from a man and his son (presumably). The kid was about 8 years old. They were there at least as long as we were, but the dad read his newspaper the ENTIRE time, while his son just sat there quietly eating breakfast. It was all I could do not to just say something. I mean, that’s rude regardless of who is at the table. My husband is still angry about it to this day. =}

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