Monday, May 09, 2005

The Boy from Hell (Again)and Halo-halo

Dear mouse,

My purpose in writing this incident is to inform the peeps in the Philippines how they take the child abuse seriously in the the United States that a teacher is required to report any incident that may indicate of physical abuse by the parents.

Yon hong mga singit na little angels is to break the monotony. Hindi lang ho ako talaga makapagsulat ng seryoso).

In one of the noontime shows in TFC, I watched the host ignored the small girl's statement that her brother is not only requiring her to work but he is also hurting her. Diba kainis yon?

Ito ang kwento ko.

The telephone rang as I was drying my hair.

It was my friend.

Phone: Got a problem.

The Ca t: What's new?

Phone: Got this phone call from school. Teacher asked me to explain the bruise in my boy's shin. He told the teacher that his father kicked him when he refused to clean his room.

The Ca t: Is that true ?

Phone: Partly true.

The Ca t: Which is the truth and which is the lie?

Phone: It was not a kick, it was merely to stop him from pouring the soda on the carpet.

He was not asked to clean the room.

The Ca t: How did the teacher see the bruise. Was he wearing short pants?

Phone: He showed to the teacher.

The Ca t: How can I help you? I am not a lawyer.

Phone: The teacher told me that cops and a social worker are coming to our house to interrogate us about the incident and I am afraid that they may take my boy from us.

The Ca t: You were in this situation two years ago and this is the second time. Frankly, I do not know what to say.

Phone: My husband left the house and I do not know where he is. He's planning to go home to the Philippines with the kids and never come back.

The Ca t: Let me browse in the internet and see what information I can get to understand better this situation.

A few minutes after, the phone rung again.

Phone: They're here, the cops and a social worker. Can you please come? I want somebody with me. You know I hardly can express myself.

The Ca t: I know you got that insurance in your company which gives you a free few hours to consult lawyers on a retainer about legal issues.

Phone: I do not have time right now. I even call in sick because I am afraid they might get my children when they do not find any of us.

The Ca t: Okay, I'll be there.

(I asked my two little angels jumped inside my tote bag. Isa sa kanan kong balikat uupo at ang isa sa kaliwa).

When I came, the cops have already left because the camera malfunctioned and they decided to come back tomorrow. It was the social worker, a Filam married to a Japanese who was there.

SW: So why didn't you insist to the doctor of the case that you think that the boy has ADHD?

Friend: She said that the behaviour is normal for his age.

The Ca t: If I may butt in. She is a friend of mine and I was there when this boy was born, I saw him when he was growing up and I attended family celebrations.

I did not totally agree with the doctor that it is a normal behaviour, hurting other children without provocation, spitting to people and grabbing toys of children he hardly knew.

(The little angel on my left said, dagdag mo tinawag kang stoopid. The little angel on my right said. Huwag kang makialam).

SW: Hurting other children without provocation may stem from disability to express. He was considered slow in development.

The Ca t: Yep so that makes him a special case and not normal. Besides, as you can see, he can already talk and yet he still loves hurting playmates including his sister. A few days ago, he gave her karate chops. He got lots of citations from the school bus driver that he was put into a harness. And he considered this normal ?

(The little angel on my left made an akimbo and blurted out...galing bata. )

This time, the boy was pounding on the table glass. I looked at him and he stopped.

(Little angel on my left: Pitikin ko kaya ito)

SW: It seemed he is afraid of you?

The Ca t : Yes, I made him understand that when he is in my house, I do not want him to break my glass display. My house is not child-friendly. Every time, he misbehaves, I give him that do/not/mess/up/with/me/look but I have never touched him even when he was in that Christmas party where he gave that little girl a big blow on her stomach.

(Litte angel on my left: Kumg hidi ko pa alam na gusto mong ihagis sa labas.) (Little angel on my right: SSSSSHH).

SW: It must be the consistency in the discipline. If one parent is strict and the other is not, the boy is going to be confused. With that story of yours, I can see that young as he is, he can already recognize people who means business.

After lengthy conversations dealing with child discipline,(Bakit ba ito pinakialaman ko rin). (Litte angel on my left: Pakialamera ka naman talaga) I asked the social worker what comes next after that interview with the mother (Ako pala ang sumasagot).

SW: My role here is to see if the boy is safe from this time up to tomorrow until we come for the police officers to conduct forensic investigation about the reported child abuse.

The Ca t: What does that mean?

The mother was worried because she was insinuating that she is taking custody of the boy.

SW: It is just a matter of documenting the case by taking pictures and interrogating the father with regards his ways of disciplining his children.

The Ca t: Look, I can understand your concern and your responsibility as a social worker but let the mother assure the safety of her kid.

I know these people are not violent people to kill their boy out of rage.

Little angel on my left: Paano ka nakasiguro?)

SW: But a child does not tell a lie. So when he told his teacher that he is being punished by his father physically, we are afraid that it could risk his safety.

The Ca t: I do not think that children do not tell lies. They do, to save their butts. But as you can see , the bruise does not show any injury that needs medical attention. It is simply a discoloration because the boy easily bruises.

I can understand the system and we are grateful for that concern. But observing the little boy while you are here, what can you say about him, honestly.

(Little angel on the left: He is a boy from hell. Magandang kampon. hihihihihihi).

SW: Well, there are indications that there may be personality disorder this early and the parents have to advocate for that with their doctor so a program can be prepared for his therapy.

The Ca t: Does this need to separate him from the parents. Isn't it more effective if this is going to be done in the home environment where the boy is not going to be alienated that would make him act negatively towards the parents.

SW: Frankly, what I can do is to talk to the doctor and make the recommendation.

The Ca t: What about the father? Can you give me a worst scenario while this is being investigated?

SW: The worst scenario is he may be imprisoned.

The Ca t: What's the crime?

SW: Child abuse.

The Ca t: Don't they see the gravity of the case. Like,there are no evidences that this child was really abused. This is a matter of disciplining the kid.

SW: Yes, but we would also like to see how the discipline is being carried out. Was the spanking at the height of his anger or was it when he already cooled down and can explain to the boy, why he is being punished?

The Ca t : I will advise the father to make himself available tomorrow. You see his problem is more on communication. He cannot speak English and has inferiority complex.

SW: I can translate for him.

The Ca t: Nakakapagsalita ka ba ng Tagalog? Bakit pinahirapan mo pa ako.

(Little angel on the left: Pahiya ka no. Bigla siyang hulog. Sinapok ng aking little angel on the right).

She left without taking the boy. My friend, the mother took the boy, the little girl and me to Red Ribbons for halo-halo.

Babaw ng kaligayahan. But I can see the mother felt a temporary relief.

Will you be there tomorrow? she asked.

I think, what they need is to talk to your husband. This is some sort of knowing him personally thru his responses.

I should not be around. You just tell him to ask for translations if he cannot understand.

My friend said thank you.

The Ca t

3 Comments:

At 10:55 AM, Blogger infraternam meam said...

i will wait for the next chapter when you translate during the questioning of the father. it's good the SW allowed you to take part during the questioning of the mother when you are not related to the family nor you are a lawyer for the family. Bilib ako sa angels moh...ano 'yan from Charlie's?

 
At 12:29 PM, Blogger cathcath said...

the mother has difficulty expressing herself. so the SW allowed me to do the talking.

and we both analyze the boy's character and the doctr's failure to diagnose the disorder that the boy may be suffering from.
up to this time, i haven't received a call from my friend so I will just wait for the feedback later this afternoon if the husband agreed to face the cops for the
interview.

btw, i have been at your site and i cannot find words of comfort for the
unbearable pain your brother has to
suffer.

 
At 10:51 PM, Blogger TinTin said...

aka pinayhekmi

This is serious indeed. I think this family needs counseling. I'm probably stating the obvious. You are a wonderful friend.

 

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