I see my son in everything

I see my son in everything. I first realised this when he was a few months old and I was watching a nature documentary. Just-hatched birds had to make a life or death leap from the top of a cliff as their first meaningful activity in life. It was awful. I cried. Although I’m fairly sure most of them made it. But each one was MY SON.

It happened just a couple of weeks later with a drunk homeless man who fell over in front of a bus. The bus driver rolled his eyes in a ‘seen it all before’ fashion. The paramedic we called was unenthusiastic about his patient. But, for us, this middle-aged drunk man was/is somebody’s LJ.

This heightened recognition and empathy is such a strange phenomenon and one that I’m absolutely sure is common across the parenting spectrum.

Which leads me to my problem…if parents see their children in everything then why do we do awful things to each other? Why do we allow awful things to happen to people? I don’t know what percentage of people in power have children, but I’m guessing that quite a few of the world’s influencers are parents.

Yesterday, along with every other parent, I saw my child lying face down in the water’s edge on a beach in Turkey.

These images have sparked universal compassion amongst everyone, parent or not. And they have encouraged a renewed call for action.

I have been confused for months about what can be done, what anyone can do about the Refugee crisis. How to move pass what seemed like a political stalemate in response to a desperate situation caused by devastating events ignited by hateful concepts. It all seemed and still seems a bit insurmountable to me…sat at my kitchen table in my pyjamas.

There are a lot of problems in the world, a lot of really bad things happening to a lot of people…close to home and far away. I can’t work out what the solution is to almost any of them. And if I can, I can’t work out how to make the solution happen. I do ‘my bit’…however insignificant that feels when most of my days are wrapped up in giggles and puddles and Bob the Builder.

But for the world leaders, for the influencers, for the people whose days should be wrapped up in tackling issues such as migration, homelessness, war…at what point does the money, the graphs, the figures, the headlines and the status overtake the innate human ability to care?

If you see your child in everything and you are in a position to really do something, to really make a difference…why oh why would you not?


#SaveSyriasChildren. To donate £5 to Save the Children text ‘Syria’ to 70008. Everyone can do something and this campaign initiated by bloggers proves it. Mr and Mrs T Plus 3’s post here explains more about the campaign and how you can be involved.

The Guardian has also written a great article listing a number of ways to help with the Refugee situation here.

6 thoughts on “I see my son in everything

  1. Thank you for writing this and sharing. I can totally relate to this, even the flying birds scenario!

    Before I had T, it’s not like I didn’t care about children it’s just that I didn’t have those “feels” y’know? I didn’t have a child so I couldn’t feel or understand the pain a parent could go through by loving their child so damn much, and how you would probably kill to protect your baby.

    T arriving has brought on a whole new set of emotions where anything from an NSPCC ad to seeing an animal and their young gives me the chance to relate to how someone/something may feel about their young. It’s a strange concept and often something I can’t control.

    Those images on the World Wide Web have hit such a cord recently that I can’t now unsee it. I imagined T. He’s only 4 months old, but that could have been us if we weren’t born where we were born, and it breaks my heart. I can’t imagine what brought the parents to do what they did. They must be so broken right now.

    I’m not sure what the point of my comment was, I guess I just wanted to say thanks and say that I can relate to all of this.


    1. Thank you, what a thoughtful comment. I completely understand what you mean about not being able to control the empathy…it’s not something you choose to feel, it’s just there.

      I wasn’t sure about publishing this but wanted to get some clarity of thought…I think I should also add…not that you’ve said it but I’ve been thinking (!) that I’m not saying people without children shouldn’t care or don’t care as much, it’s just that the feeling you have seeing your children in all sorts of things is pretty powerful. And with as many parents in the world as there are, it seems baffling that ANY bad thing (aside from natural disasters) happens.

      But yes, those images were incredibly sad. And to imagine people feeing desperate enough to take a risk like that is truly awful.

      Thank you again for your comment xx

      Liked by 1 person

  2. True this. I saw those photos and saw. my child, the children who come to our church and our toddler group. I know it’s complicated, but something needs to be done. So far we’ve taken a train load of refugees who,we’ll give £36 a week and forbid to,work,whilst we process them. Um, I’d hope that if it was me and my child fleeing for our lives people would be kinder. #weekendblogshare.


    1. That’s absolutely it. It seems that some people can’t imagine it being them. I can’t in all honesty but I can try and I can imagine how I would want to be treated if it was happening to me.
      Your post is wonderful. If anyone is reading this and wants to read it go here
      Hope that works. Thanks for visiting and commenting x


  3. Yes, I do this. I always tended to get upset about bad things happening to people, especially children, but I am much worse now as I do think about if that happened to my kids. (Weirdly, I’m not much of a crier at films and things. I laugh at the end of Ghost. It has always been the news that makes me cry.)

    As for the attitudes of the leaders, the people who could do something but do not, I think some people lack empathy and compassion, and are emotionally limited, and I am not sure that having children actually fundamentally changes that. I think certain positions tend to attract people who are a bit lacking in those regards, or maybe it is that the positions eventually strip the empathy and the idealism from the person, and a level of detachment is often regarded (wrongly, in my opinion) as something that makes people better leaders. I also think that for, some people, they do feel the emotions as regards their own family, but they genuinely believe that they are somehow different and bad things only happen to people who have somehow brought it upon themselves, therefore you do not need to concern yourself with it. That is a level of delusion and entitlement that I think often comes with extreme privilege, so perhaps it is more common among the ruling elite? And I think there is always some element of the ‘power corrupts’ thing. Leaders who do not start to lose sight of principles, morality, compassion because they become too obsessed with retaining their position and appealing to what they believe is public opinion, or to the people with the power, sadly seem a little rare.


    1. I’m sorry for my delay in replying, I’ve been having comment issues (disappearing comments and unable to reply to mine) but hey ho. Thank you very much for your interesting reply. It really got me thinking. Scary personality trait but necessary for some roles? Very thought provoking comment. Thank you x


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