You probably won’t believe this but I haven’t been spending a lot of time on the internet or watching television so my first time hearing about the “Gorilla Incident” was by word of mouth. I was shocked and extremely disheartened. I don’t know if I was more upset about the tragic story or by other people’s reactions. Even the person telling me the story seemed alienated by the press. The call to feel empathy for the mom was shut down by blames already permanently labeled to her. Concerns for the child were revoked simply because his curiosity seemed to deem him unworthy. My sympathies for the zoo were crushed because they responded to a crisis that no matter how it was handled wasn’t going to turn out pretty.
Everyone has an opinion and is quick to place shame and blame. Ready to point a finger as long as it isn’t at them! What happened to the idea that it takes a village to raise a child. This isn’t the first child to do something unsafe or stupid. This isn’t the first mom to let her guard down for a moment. I can’t fathom being in this moms shoes, watching a giant ape throw my baby around. Standing there, watching helplessly praying your child will be back safe in your arms. I remember hanging out with my moms group at a park and my oldest son at age three was playing happy as can be. One second he was in my sight and literally a second later was not. I remember my adrenaline pumping, my eyes searching and the horrible thoughts running through my head. Luckily he had followed a group of girls into the bathroom. I was so upset and quickly felt like a horrible parent. Luckily the tribe of women I was with were diligent in helping me find my boy, encouraging with their words and slow to judge.
So I say to all the blamers out there: quiet down your judgey words and hide your shade behind some sun glasses please because this generation of parents is done with the blame game. Instead of pointing a finger; use it for something positive. Wrap that finger around a little one and hold them tight, fold your hands together and say a prayer or reach a hand out and help a fellow parent who looks in distress.