I Had No Idea

I’ve seen a lot of memes on Facebook that say we should be kind because we never know what others are going through. Frankly, I never gave that too much thought. For 25 years, I was in a rocky marriage. There was a lot of screaming, but never any physical violence. We had the usual teenaged angst with our kids, but no physical violence. Still, I always thought I had terrible problems at home, and I couldn’t see past my own issues to understand those of anyone else. If my co-workers came to work looking fine, then I thought they were fine.

Someone in my county started live streaming a scanner on Facebook, so I thought I’d have a listen. Last night, a child called 911 and said her mother was acting crazy toward the kids and had a knife. The child said the mom had come at them with a knife before. At the same time this was going on, a mother-in-law called in and said her son-in-law was suicidal, and she heard him cock a pistol. A couple of nights ago, a mother called and said she and her husband were sitting in the car at the entry to their subdivision because their son was threatening to kill them and they were afraid.

I’m assuming the family members in these situations went to work and school this morning and tried to act like nothing significant had happened last night. They may encounter a teacher who gives them detention for not having their homework to turn in. They may snap on phone calls with customers and get fired. They may be rude to friends and cause strained relationships. All of these things on top of what happened last night may break them or cause them to snap. Chances are, there will be more domestic violence, and maybe even workplace violence.

Now I have a better understanding of what the memes on Facebook are saying. I really don’t know what others are going through. When someone posts a picture of their new car, maybe it’s a gift after a violent outburst. With enlightenmet comes responsibility.

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