Saturday 25 August 2018

Mea Culpa

Thank you for all your comments on my Friday post, Swimming Lesson. Some of them broke my heart even more than it already was over this incident.

You may have noticed that I have now removed that post, without publishing the comments. While I could not get the incident out of my head, and had written it in part to try to do that, I still felt a bit uncomfortable posting it. And after it was out in the world, I felt very uncomfortable.

Why? That's what I kept asking my conscience, because it was that little whippersnapper that was making me uncomfortable.

The incident on its own was truthfully recorded.

But there is more to the story, as there is to most stories. The following is the context that I should have included, but did not, in an effort to make my point succinctly, and also, to be frank, because I was tired and had no other post prepared.

Although I don't see this neighbour interacting with his children often, due to work schedules and so on, I have seen enough that this incident surprised me. I have never before had any qualms about his, or his wife's, parenting. They seem like good, caring, patient parents.

I think -- and hope -- this was an isolated incident. It bothered me nonetheless. It made me think of all the other children who live this on a more frequent basis in every area of their upbringing.

It also reminded me of the times I was less than the parent I wanted to be. Times that I was tired, overwhelmed with responsibility, and pretty much at the end of my rope.

While I did not agree with my neighbour's actions, I understood them.

Not many of us are perfect. Many of us have spoken in anger, in disappointment, in hurt, in frustration, or due to lack of knowledge about how to handle a situation. Many of us have acted wrongly for the same reasons.

I believe that posting this story without full context, whatever my reasons were, was not the right thing to do. I have hesitated over posts many times, and usually made what I feel was the right choice and withheld them, choosing instead to write something light-hearted and inoffensive. My standard is generally the question, Would I say this directly to the person involved? If not, I should not write about it in a manner that is essentially behind his or her back, no matter what the lesson is.

I believe it's what we do most of the time that makes us who we are. And I believe that when we fail, we have to keep trying to do better.

* * * * *

Because I feel that the pressure to post was one of the factors in posting when I should not have, I've decided to change my posting schedule. I will still post a poem on Poetry Monday, but other posts will be when the spirit moves me. I've been feeling pretty washed out this summer, and am finding it hard to come up with something of interest (hey, what do you mean "you noticed"? ha ha) and am hoping this switch may bring better decisions and better posts.

Skeptical Cat is skeptical about Donkey's plan. But then, Skeptical Cat is skeptical about everything.

(Photo: Pixabay)


River said...

A change in posting schedule is a good idea, it will be almost like a holiday for you.

Elephant's Child said...

Skeptical Cat is of course skeptical.
The Child of the Elephant applauds.
Heartfelt hugs and oceans of caring.

kylie said...

I didn't see the post but I congratulate you for holding yourself to a standard.
I did many things I regret when my kids were young and I hope people thought generously (tho they most likely didn't)
Post as you feel inspired and I hope your doldrums soon pass

crafty cat corner said...

I'm with you on posting. I now post when I feel like it, thus the reason why you don't get much for a week or more sometimes.
I also understand your explanation for the post you took off. I am usually very careful what I post as so many people can get offended at things that they disagree with and I don't like nasty comments.
On the whole I haven't had many, just the odd one.
Have a good Bank Holiday

Starting Over, Accepting Changes - Maybe said...

I have almost as many drafts as I have published posts. I have strong opinions about many things and they often come at night when I am tired. My rule has been that I wait until the light of day to publish any last minute posts. Your blog is always a joy to read and don’t beat yourself up over that last one. Seeing a fearful child stirs up that mother instinct and we want to protect. It is natural and good.

No one is perfect and we all make mistakes in raising our children. My own kids like to joke about some of my major ones and I can just smile knowing that I always tried my best but may not have used the best judgement at times. Giving my daughter a kinky permanent once when she was going to a new school or dressing her up like Dolly Parton for Halloween were major fails.

Marie Smith said...

I understand you change of heart, Jenny.

Joan (Devon) said...

I did read Friday's post and thought that it was an unusual one for you and I was too early to read any comments. Couldn't comment myself as I haven't come across anything like that, although I thought it was a cruel thing to do.

I can understand your hesitation in writing it and then deleting it as I have sent comments to a few blogs which I wish I hadn't said. Mainly personal things to do with close family members, all true, but it wasn't my business to say. I'm afraid I get caught up in the topic that's being discussed. Unfortunately once I press the button to publish it is too late, I can't delete it. Now I am forcing myself to hesitate before sending a comment on any blogs. Sometimes I get a bit carried away, but I am getting better.

I've more or less got my poem sorted for Monday, so 'see' you then. Don't be too hard on yourself. (Hugs).

Martha said...

Well, I didn't get to that post in time, and perhaps that's a good thing. ?? You are a good soul. The fact that you think deeply about this issue and how you present it to the world speaks volumes about you. I don't know what the incident was about but I do know that when it comes to parenting, we've all said or done things we regret. Perhaps from frustration, impatience, fatigue...whatever the reason, we've all been there.

Have a happy and peaceful weekend!

Joanne Noragon said...

If we don't need to know, don't do it. If we do...
Well, you get it. xxoo

jenny_o said...

I'm looking forward to it, so probably it's something I needed to do some time ago.

jenny_o said...

Thanks, EC, and the same back to you.

jenny_o said...

Thank you, kylie.

jenny_o said...

Thanks, Briony. I didn't have any nasty comments but I kept thinking I was being unfair and couldn't stand that part. I'm looking forward to a change in posting.

jenny_o said...

Thank you for the smiles, Arleen! And what would our kids complain about (and joke about) if we didn't make those kinds of mistakes? You know, the ones that come from love?

jenny_o said...

Thanks, Marie.

jenny_o said...

Thank you, Joan. I feel better having deleted it. So it was the right thing to do, for me. Did you notice that many comment features have a Delete button underneath the published comments? You can delete your own but not anyone else's. I've had to use that button more than once, sad to say :)

jenny_o said...

I think "we've all been there" is a pretty safe statement, Martha! Thank you, and have a good weekend yourself :)

jenny_o said...

Yes, but the thing is, you don't need to know ANYTHING about my hair, my bird feeders, my crappy gardening skills, my walks, etc etc etc, now do you? lol

dinthebeast said...

I didn't think it was a bad post, as I know people who were mistreated as children who could have used outside attention from benevolent adults, but I understand your discomfort, especially in ongoing close quarters with your neighbor.
Sometimes kids scream and raise a ruckus. My neighbor's kids do it daily, and I'm certain they would not welcome intervention from me.
I tell many stories about inflammatory, illegal, or potentially damaging subjects, but I only use them as stories after the statute of limitations has run out, both literally and figuratively. Or, if you'll pardon my language, as we say here in Oakland, I try not to start any shit.
Post when you want to. Your blog is delightful partly because of the fun you have with it, so perhaps if it turns into a chore it would change its character, which is fine if that's what you want, but can also sneak up on you if you let it.

-Doug in Oakland

LL Cool Joe said...

Over the years I've removed some posts that I've written, in fact if I could I think I'd remove them all but the current one, as I hate reading them again. That's the wonderful thing about having a blog it's our place to write about what we want, and at the time you wrote about what was on your mind, but now you regret it. I understand.

jenny_o said...

Yeah, I think it WAS sneaking up on me. As much as I kept thinking a regular schedule would force me to write, in the end, it only forced me to post. Thank you for the kind remarks, Doug.

jenny_o said...

Thanks, Joey. And I like reading your older posts, the ones that show up randomly underneath your current post, because I wasn't around to read them the first time!

only slightly confused said...

I've had to straighten myself out every once in a while as well....I hear you sister.....just post when you feel like it. that's what I do now and it works.

jenny_o said...

I wish I had made that decision a week (or three) ago. Would have saved myself some anxiety :)

crafty cat corner said...

Hi Jenny, you asked about the wings. The dragonfly wings are made from organza and the bumble bee's are silk ribbon, I then just gently drew veins with pen.

37paddington said...

It's your blog, and you should always with do with it what feels comfortable in your soul. I only post when moved to do so. If it began to feel like an obligation, i think i would stop completely. Quite frankly, I don't write for anyone else so much as myself, to process what I'm thinking and feeling, to record things I don't want to forget. I think what I'm trying to say is don't feel as if you have to entertain your readers all the time. We are here for you, all aspects of you, whether lighthearted or more shaded. That said, I too have taken down posts from time to time. Your spirit knows.

baili said...

My dear friend jenny i am feeling sorry for not being able to read that post!

i adore your perspective about the topic and i totally agree with one particular line you said here that if i cannot say same thing straight to the person whom it belongs i have no right to say it on his back!

this is appreciable gesture regarding your thoughts my friend!

this is nice that you want to share more interesting stuff with your fellows my friend but i will dare to say that you should not be much grave about what you are sharing
Just follow your heart simply and let the spontaneous thoughts come out with their unique ability to impress all of us :)

although i completely respect your decisions for your way of posting but remember only one thing from me that I LOVE YOUR WRITINGS which seem to come straight from your heart and touch my heart deeply!

take care and stay blessed my friend!Hugs!

jenny_o said...

Thanks, Briony -- your work is beautiful.

jenny_o said...

And if it didn't know for sure before I posted, it sure knew afterward :) Seriously, though, you're right on all counts.

jenny_o said...

Thank you so much, baili; I know you are right that I should not be so worried about entertaining people and be more spontaneous. That was never my way and it's hard to learn it! Hugs back to you, my friend.