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My 4 year old was punched in the head by an autistic 13 year old - a discussion...

Discussion in 'BBS Hangout' started by JayZ750, Jul 28, 2016.

  1. JayZ750

    JayZ750 Contributing Member

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    Title is pretty self explanatory. Out in public at a store, effectively "in line". A enormous 13'ish year old boy just out of the blue comes up and punches my 4 year old in the head. My kid is not a big 4 year old, and of course much crying ensued... but on the whole he seems ok now. It was a pretty strong punch... but a cookie helped.

    The discussion is what can I do, what should I have done, is it even worth thinking about anymore (sincemy son seems to be fine)?

    The mother acted relatively quickly enough. There were no more punches thrown... though I'd say she didn't act so quickly that if the kid was interested in unleashing fury he couldn't have. She was quick, but he could have gotten 4/5 punches in easily. I was holding a 6 month old.

    There was "some" apology. I put some in quotation marks because while I'm sure they were sorry, to me, it didn't feel that sincere. It was more of a sorry combined with exasperation on their part. Again, the boy was clearly autistic, and even wearing headphones to block out noise. And I'm sure they're exasperated, but per the story they have just 2 kids, there was a mom and two grandmoms, and we were in a store with a fair number of small kids. They should be on him like hawks, clearly.

    My wife and mother-in-law didn't want me to make a scene... and I didn't... but I did say some things. I strongly suggested that they shouldn't take him out in public like this, that I blamed them and that I'm stuck with little to no recourse and worse of all have to ensure my kid is ok. One of the grandmom's said, verbatim, "we've got to get him out, and he hasn't killed anyone yet"... which kind of blew my mind ("not yet, but meet us here tomorrow and you never know... hardee har!!"). So at that point I had to just leave. Took the kids, got a cookie, went to the car.

    My wife said the mom did apologize more sincerely after I left, and was crying.

    But I'm still conflicted. I have some guilt for saying what I said, and also some guilt for not saying more. Their comment was tongue in cheek about killing someone, and I know they are trying to help him learn to socialize, but then again I was lucky it was my 4 year old and not my 6 month old, for example that he just came out of the blue to hit. I'm sure its horrible for them, but its also their responsibility.

    Should I have handled the situation differently? Been more aggressive, less? Feel concern about the kid out in public again? Etc.
     
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  2. HR Dept

    HR Dept Contributing Member

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    I just... Can't.

    OP, I have no idea how I would've handled that situation. Wow
     
  3. Nick

    Nick Contributing Member

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    Expected reaction... you have every right to be pissed, but when you really look at the other family's situation, what they've had to deal with thus far, and a lifetime of much more and possibly worse... there's a role to be sympathetic as well.

    Best you can take away is that the outcome wasn't tragic... but you shouldn't feel guilty about venting because like you said, you have no idea in the moment about what could have happened to your 4 year old, let alone the possibility that it could have happened to the younger one.
     
  4. JayZ750

    JayZ750 Contributing Member

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    Exactly, this is why I started the thread. I'm a very calm person on the whole. And I handled it really calmly as described.

    I just got a feel from the family that was very "oh well, there's nothing we can do". There was very little sincerity on their part, and frankly I don't think they understand not only (1) the danger to others, but (2) the danger to their son.

    MANY MANY MANY father's would not have handled the situation quite as peacefully as me.

    I wanted to call the police - for the reasons stated above - but the wife and mother-in-law told me to just leave it. The mother was apparently way more sincere when I left... which is also bull****, really. I wasn't being confrontational... just logical.

    I have 4 kids. And pets. And all kinds of **** to deal with. We all have stress and responsibilities. I still manage to make sure my dogs don't attack children in public for instance... and no, I'm not comparing an autistic child to a dog.
     
  5. ISOBall

    ISOBall Member

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    If that was me ole' momma woulda got Ray Lewis'd LMAO
     
  6. Deckard

    Deckard Blade Runner
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    It's your kid and he was punched "out of the blue" and in a public place. I don't blame you for saying some things you probably regretted saying after the heat of the moment, but don't beat yourself up about it. Just be grateful that your son is OK, and that you aren't the older kid's parents. My guess is that they feel far worse that you do. What a nightmare.
     
  7. ipaman

    ipaman Contributing Member

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    hard not to say something in that situation but just remember you kid and family will be fine while that kid and his family will not.
     
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  8. DarkHorse

    DarkHorse Contributing Member

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    I feel a lot more for the mother of the autistic child than for you, honestly. She has to deal with the struggle of her son every day. She didn't ask for this life, it was just chance. Parents with special needs children are dealt a tough hand. We should go out of our way to be as sympathetic as possible.
     
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  9. J Sizzle

    J Sizzle Member

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    I don't blame you for getting upset. I think you handled it just about as well as you could, actually. Let her know she can't be losing her kid in public like that, but not go overboard. Going and doing something like calling the police would have been an overreaction. Don't get upset with the mom, though, as things for her are certainly very tough as it is.
     
  10. Dairy Ashford

    Dairy Ashford Member

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    It seems like some kind of non-clinical reciprocal aversion therapy, administered parentally over the years, could have conditioned against this particular behavior.
     
  11. LCAhmed

    LCAhmed Contributing Member

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    Honestly, like others have said, you have a right to feel the way you do, it's your kid. However, like others have said as well, your child isn't autistic, and as nice as it would be for them to be on him 24/7 365, it's very tough to do this with a regular child, much less an autistic one.

    The important thing is your family is okay and nobody got hurt. I've worked with special needs children when I was in high school (best buddies program) and I can tell you, it is quite the experience. Dealing with special needs is not simple, or easy. Certain times you have to baby them and make special exceptions, other times you cannot be taken advantage of either. Definitely not a black and white thing, so as far as the parents of the 13 yo, I would definitely give them a little more leeway on monitoring their child, as there is no telling what they have tried, done, dealt with already.

    I would maybe explain to your son the situation and introduce him into the concept of autistic/special needs. Obviously hitting isn't a good thing, and that what happened to him was wrong, but because of this special circumstance, that it should be handled differently.
     
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  12. JayZ750

    JayZ750 Contributing Member

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    Just to clarify, you feel worse for the mother after her kid punched a small child in the head, then for the family of the child who was punched in the head??

    Life is a chance for all of us. She didn't ask for it, as I didn't ask for her son to punch mine in the head.

    Again, it was clear from the reaction that they know this is a possibility form him. It has nothing to do with her life being hard. I get it, it is. I feel for them as a whole. Surely it's not ok though for her as a parent to ignore her responsibility not only to her son, self and family, but to the public at large?

    Shouldn't the owners of an aggressive dog, that has had past incidents, be held responsible when they do something irresponsible that results in the animal hurting someone else (especially a child)?? And had I seen that animal in previous encounters, and not "done" something, only to read about something even worse in the future, I'd be killing myself.
     
  13. heypartner

    heypartner Contributing Member

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    I thought your wife disagrees with this statement? She said the mom was more sincere and "crying."

    I don't think your first impression of how they reacted means much at all with regards to your concern for "not only (1) the danger to others, but (2) the danger to their son. " which seems to be your most concern, as you stated.

    I don't think you are wrong for being upset. But saying they don't know stuff about their kid, based on how they apologized seems wrong. It almost seems like you are getting defensive for getting upset and making the topic how they could have apologized differently to prevent you getting upset or making you more sympathetic towards them.

    This is essentially what you are saying: "That kid is an uncontrollable weapon like a dog, and those parents didn't apologize the way that makes me feel safe, so they don't care about me or my kid or worse the greater danger to others and society, and in turn their own son."
     
  14. REEKO_HTOWN

    REEKO_HTOWN I'm Rich Biiiiaaatch!

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    Tell me more, Doctor...

    Where did you do your residency?

    This is also my impression. I don't think JayZ saw the older child as a child at all, he saw him as a threat to other children. I wonder what his reaction would be it the child wasn't autistic?
     
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  15. JayZ750

    JayZ750 Contributing Member

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    I have 4 kids under the age of 7... lol. I understand raising kids. And autistic or not, they are all unique, have tendencies, etc. I don't have an autistic child... though we are not without health issues...

    I get it... though would note, my son is 4. He's not exactly interested in the why and how of what happened after something like that happened. The one that is almost 7 is there, and we did discuss.

    All that said, I feel like this type of response is completely outcome related. It would still hold generally true, but had the outcome been meaningfully worse, it seems like it'd be clear there should be strong blame and responsibility placed on the parent.

    Again its just a discussion... but part of that discussion is do I have a societal responsibility to speak up more?
     
  16. DarkHorse

    DarkHorse Contributing Member

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    Your kid was fine after a cookie. Hers will never be "fine".

    Think about it from her perspective. I feel like you're asking her to lock up her son and give up on her own life because she lost the child lottery.
     
  17. Deckard

    Deckard Blade Runner
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    I like that idea. Make it a teaching moment for your kid so he will begin to understand that not all children are like him, just as not all parents are like his own. That in many ways he is incredibly lucky.
     
  18. DaDakota

    DaDakota If you want to know, just ask!
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    This is tough, glad you kiddo is ok, but those people with a severely autistic kid have a VERY rough go of it, they have to deal with him 24/7, and more than likely he will never get that much better (By the description) and that is tough sledding.

    I think you did the right thing, and just hope your kiddo is not traumatized by the experience.

    Autism really sucks - I know all kinds of people that are on the spectrum, many I work with directly - and some of them are SUPER friggen annoying in their idiosyncrasies, you just have to learn to cope with their strange behavior.

    DD
     
  19. tmac2k8

    tmac2k8 Member

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    I would be outraged to be honest if some 13 year old punched by 2.5 year old daughter out of nowhere. I would not be able to control myself. I may have even pushed that kid down and cussed him out and then his parents too. I would not have been able to be rational in that situation.
     
  20. LosPollosHermanos

    LosPollosHermanos Houston only fan
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    The kid is autistic and wasn't going to inflict some mortal wound. I understand it would piss any dad off, but look at the situation and how it was something beyond what we perceive to be conscious control.

    Autistic children can be very difficult and throw tantrums. They aren't a risk to society so you have to take the high road.
     

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