Similar education in the US likely saved my own kids' lives! I'm a mother who originally wanted to be child-free -- I honestly have ZERO maternal instinct, and I needed to be explicitly told that shaking a baby might kill it. But once I knew, I did my best.
0 ( +6 / -6 )
So sad. I hope the poor mother gets the help she clearly needs, but it's too late for the little one. It would be so much better to prevent tragedies like this from happening -- but even when help is available, many people don't know about it, or are ashamed to ask for it when they need it.
-1 ( +3 / -4 )
Poor baby. I also feel sorry for the parents in these situations, because I was once in his shoes and I remember what it was like to be at the end of my rope. I honestly have zero maternal instinct -- I hadn't wanted to have any kids, but gave in only because my partner wanted some. Fortunately, I knew punching it wouldn't make it stop crying!
3 ( +7 / -4 )
Posted in: Do you think children of past generations had better manners than kids today when it comes to gestures like saying "please," "thank you" and showing respect for their elders? See in context
I think kids today are much more polite than my own little ill-mannered barbarians were.
3 ( +4 / -1 )
The Japanese news stories contain more details, and note that the child's condition seemed to worsen when the mother was with the child. Medical professionals began to suspect Proxy Münchhausen Syndrome. Very sad -- I hope that no matter whatever the circumstances, this family gets the help it needs.
0 ( +2 / -2 )
Poor boy....The mother clearly is not in her right mind -- and while I hope she gets the help she desperately needs, I just can't imagine....what if someday she recovers enough to fully understand what a ghastly thing she did? That would be far worse than any jail sentence.
0 ( +1 / -1 )
UPDATE for anyone following this case -- according to this article, the woman hadn't realized she was pregnant. The autopsy put the fetus at 4-5 months, so her pregnancy was in the second trimester. I like to think the police wouldn't have arrested the couple for a pre-viability fetus/embryo in their freezer....but who knows?
0 ( +0 / -0 )
@Gaijinland, I'm sorry for your & your wife's loss, but every miscarriage story is unique, so you can't make assumptions about others based on your own experience. In my case, I began to miscarry alone at home on a Friday -- I called my doctor, who said to come in Monday morning, and by then, everything was all over. I had flushed my baby's remains down our toilet at home, and the doctor scolded me for this. My Japanese friends told me that she could have reported me to the police for "abandonment" of the baby's body after I told her what I had done, but surely Japanese law only applies to babies after a certain gestational age? Mine was quite early, obviously.
0 ( +0 / -0 )
@Khuniri -- ah, I was wrong! I thought the abortion law had changed, since so many doctors these days just ignore it, but in fact, the husband's consent is STILL legally required before a married woman can get an abortion in Japan!
0 ( +0 / -0 )
@Khuniri, not necessarily the husband, but consent of the father was required. I can assure you that it most certainly used to be the case -- although there were ways to get around it, most often by asking a male friend to stand in. In my case, I let it slip to my doctor that I happened to be married, so my options were limited.
-1 ( +2 / -3 )
This strikes me as VERY odd! Surely the remains weren't "abandoned" if they were kept in the freezer? Perhaps the main question is whether the baby was born alive -- but if it was indeed a miscarriage, how far along was the pregnancy? I once miscarried an early pregnancy in Tokyo, and my doctor scolded me for disposing of the remains myself -- but keeping them in the freezer would have been illegal?!? If indeed this miscarriage was natural, this case seems like a victimless "crime."
5 ( +6 / -1 )
Poor woman -- I can only imagine the kind of desperation she must have felt, to do what most people find unthinkable. I once faced an unwanted pregnancy in Tokyo and I knew my husband wouldn't give me permission to get an abortion (such permission was legally required at the time), so I understand how trapped she must have felt. One woman's blessing is another woman's curse! If only she had been able to prevent the pregnancy in the first place.
-3 ( +2 / -5 )
If I were in the driver's place, and I knew it was my negligence & failure that led to boy's death, I wouldn't even care what they charged me with, or how long I went to prison -- the knowledge of what I had done would haunt me for the rest of my days, and no punishment could possibly be any worse.
6 ( +6 / -0 )
As someone who once loaded my groceries into my car and then forgot my five-month baby in the shopping cart and DROVE ALL THE WAY HOME BEFORE I NOTICED, I can perfectly understand how something like this can happen. (I was not drunk or on drugs at the time, nor do I have any physical or mental challenges -- I was simply exhausted & distracted.) Poor baby, poor mother, poor family.
0 ( +1 / -1 )
I can't see how this could possibly have been fatal. Key elements are missing from this story. Was the closet too small for him to breath or something?
0 ( +0 / -0 )
Most people here seem to assume she killed the baby, but that is far from clear. Abandoning a corpse is a against the law here, but not everyone knows it -- in fact, I had no idea myself, and I once miscarried in Japan and disposed of the remains without even realizing I could have been committing a crime! I would like to know this mother's situation and intent.
0 ( +0 / -0 )
I wish the poor woman had gotten help before she did the unthinkable. Mentally ill people are rarely a danger to themselves or others, but cases like this one remind us of the worst possible scenario, when someone sadly falls through the cracks. Surely there were signs before she did this, and those around her missed them -- so sad. I hope she gets the help she clearly needs, but it won't bring her poor kids back.
-1 ( +2 / -3 )
Once I was sitting on the subway with my son and he crossed one of his legs over the other knee, and one of his feet was too close for the comfort of the elderly Japanese gentleman next to him, who SLAPPED the bare calf that he thought was too close. My son was mortified and leapt to his feet and apologized. (I watched this unfold with great interest -- my son looks entirely Japanese, and the man didn't think we were together.)
0 ( +3 / -3 )
Are you really trying to justify a mother running over her 3-year old child with her car, because of happenstance?! Like: 'Oops I overcooked the pasta, oh stupid me, teehee!'
Yes. Minus the "teehee" of course. Tragic accidents happen. This will haunt the mother to her grave. When I read this, I can easily imagine myself in her place.
7 ( +7 / -0 )
Poor woman. I was a troubled new mother myself, and so I can imagine what a dark place she must have been in, to do such a terrible thing. I'm glad her baby was all right, and I hope she gets the help she clearly needs!
2 ( +4 / -2 )
Another family that fell through the cracks, until the unthinkable happened. The help available to struggling parents (heck, even more broadly, to all mentally troubled people) is inconsistent. Even though it seems that such tragedies happen out of the blue, there are usually warning signs -- and professionals need to be looking for them.
2 ( +2 / -0 )
I was a troubled mother myself so my heart goes out to this family. I wish they had gotten help, before this tragedy.
4 ( +6 / -2 )
@ReynardFox, I agree with you that people who break the law should be punished to deter others (whether the Japanese legal system is fair for everyone is a question I won't get into, because I at least agree with the principle). As far as outreach beforehand, Japan should do more to identify families at risk and proactively reach out to them, and connect them with services. We don't know much from this article, but we can tell just from the age of their older child that this couple first became parents when they were still teenagers, We don't know if the man suffered from some kind of mental illness -- that wouldn't excuse what he did, of course, but helping such people BEFORE they take the horrible step is far superior to taking action only after. And generally speaking, I think (based on my own unscientific observations of Japan) that troubled people in general are unlikely to seek help on their own for fear of stigma and shame, so that should change, too. Everyone should be encouraged to seek parenting classes and counseling as needed. This father unquestionably did something ghastly to his son -- we don't know much more than that. Is he an unrepentant sociopath, or a just a weak, immature person who did something stupid and impulsive for which he will suffer for the rest of his life, and which cost his son's life? In the case of the former, there were likely signs beforehand that the father was dangerous, and the wife should had the resources and options to keep herself and her children safe. In the case of the latter, we'll never know if perhaps a bit more support could have gone a long way.
I comment a lot here on posts about parents (usually mothers) who do the unthinkable, because decades ago, I suffered from undiagnosed post-partum depression and really struggled when my own kids were babies. I also once faced an unwanted pregnancy in Japan, and was told that I couldn't get an abortion without the father's permission -- I fortunately miscarried, but I believe I can relate to women who feel trapped in crisis pregnancies. Where other people see monsters in most of these parents, I always think, "There but for the grace of god go I," because I had the resources to find help myself. It's true that some people are beyond help, but I believe it's always worth TRYING. (Thank you for listening to my TED talk!)
1 ( +1 / -0 )
As long as we continue to believe that "bad people do bad things for no other reason than because they are bad," then we're powerless to prevent them from happening, and they will just happen again & again.
1 ( +2 / -1 )
"Right, because it's so easy to call people monsters AFTER the fact, than to try to reach them before! It might feel good to yell, MONSTER! at the person responsible for ghastly acts like this, but wouldn't society's collective energy be better spent trying to prevent them from happening?"
0 ( +1 / -1 )
If only this man had gotten help before he lost his temper and did the unthinkable. Poor baby, poor wife, poor family.
-3 ( +3 / -6 )
It takes a pretty callous person to strangle a four-year old with their bare hands.
And another to defend someone who has already confessed to said child killing.
Oh, so to give someone "presumption of innocence" (with a possibly forced confession - we all know how that works in this country!) is now the same as to "defend" them?
Poor baby, poor mother, poor father -- no matter what the circumstances, it's tragic this ghastly action wasn't averted by getting this family help. Too often, it's much easier to criticize & blame afterwards than reaching out beforehand.
1 ( +1 / -0 )
What matters most is not the length of the sentence but whether or not she gets the help she clearly needs. She is already suffering the worst fate of any parent: her children are dead, and it's her fault, and she has to live with this. That's a life sentence.
And to those of you who want to hang monster parents (like me), I hope you look in a mirror.
-1 ( +1 / -2 )
I fail to understand why people are incapable of feeling sorry for someone whose kids are dead....and the fact that the mother herself is to blame for it with her actions makes it even worse. Even crap parents love their kids, and I wouldn't wish something like this on anyone, no matter how errantly they behaved -- and obviously, I feel most sorry for the two kids who paid the ultimate price. If my kids had died because of my irresponsible actions, nothing else would matter -- a conviction for it couldn't possibly have made me feel any worse.
0 ( +0 / -0 )
Poor children, poor woman, poor family I myself was also a neglectful mother at times who also left my kids alone to go drinking, so I can perfectly relate to what she did -- and her children paid the ultimate price, and she has to live with herself knowing what she did. (My born kids all managed to survive my parenting, fortunately!)
-5 ( +2 / -7 )