Monday, March 09, 2009


There's a little boy I know who I suspect is being abused. I'm not certain, but I just have this feeling. Today when I saw him, he had a major shiner. His eye was swollen almost shut. He wouldn't talk to me about it. Not one word. He told the other little boy who was there that it had "happened while he was sleeping." His mom said his brother did it. His four year old brother.

A few weeks ago, it was bruises underneath both eyes.

Maybe there's an explanation. I know abusers like to stay away from visible areas. At least if they're not too drunk. Maybe his brother really did do something, and then it swelled when he was asleep. God knows I don't want to get CPS involved if there really isn't an issue. But I'm going to be watching him. Very carefully.


egan said...

I think that's the best you can do right now. Next time, I probably wouldn't hesitate to call. If you're wrong, then they know someone's watching for their son. If you're right, you've done a damn good thing.

Jamie said...

Oh that's tough. But yeah, you just can't take the chance. We owe it to the kids to call children's aid even if we just suspect. Actually, that's where our obligation lays - just to voice suspicion. The burden of proof lays with children's aid.

Logophile said...

oh man,
tough spot.
I'm glad you are watching.
No one ever should get away with abusing a kid.
Not ok, ever.

Watch closely

Winters said...

It's a really tough call. I agree with Egan.

Candace said...

I think it is one of the toughest calls to make. If unfounded, it can be devastating to the family, but if there really is abuse, NOT reporting it is unforgivable. So, yeah, definitely keeping on eye on this kid.

Anonymous said...

That's a worrisome situation to be in. It's good you are being vigilant.

SM said...

That's tough, friend. I totally see why you're not sure what to do and I think watching him is a good idea. But at the same time, I know the what if in the back of your mind is always there...ugh. How well do you know the mom?

I do agree that for the most part, if he was being abused at home, they visible areas (face, arms, legs, etc.) are avoided. But sometimes people are just that arrogant and will hit wherever damn the consequences.

Is it possible he's getting beat up at school? But then, I guess, why would his mom say his brother is doing it? It's like she's protecting someone or something. Scary.

Anonymous said...

This does give me some concern too. I mean, even if it's the brother, that's two separate black-eye occasions. Why are the parents letting the kids "play" so hard? And if it's just accidental, why wouldn't the boy want to talk about it at all? It seems very suspicious.