Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Been so SICK And Tired


Yes, I'm afraid I've been sicker than I thought possible for several weeks now, hence my long absence. I even hallucinated a bit that I was inside a giant clam, very much like Venus here, but instead of a robe I was being handed a tiny box of Kleenex. Yikes. Today seems more manageable so I eagerly want to get back to this little psychological journey you took with me.

Selfishly I do hope you read every word, and consider carefully a comment - or not - but could you please read it all. Thank you! It makes a difference.

All of you responded so passionately about an act performed in the tens of thousands each day, but just not by you or to your beloved ones. Someone else's not-so-beloved ones. Surely they count to someone? I'm afraid that's not a given. Real flesh and blood parents throw out their kids daily, they beat them, starve them, sell them, and worst of all, ignore them. Is it as simple as people who keep journals make good parents?? It would seem they certainly make eager ones! While it gladdened my heart it made me think - of honesty for one.

"I'd die for my child."
"I'd kill for my child."
"I'd kill you then myself for my child."

I know you mean this.

"I'd give up all future personal happiness for my child."

That's the other half of what you're saying, isn't it?

I notice DB and Mt. Dora took special note of the "no exit clause" when I quantified this question with "if you had no choice" which of course means, you would have to kill someone. And I saw immediately and not surprisingly that women (between the sexes, the majority keep journals) react with fierce almost defensive protective instincts, opting not to address the scenario by stating they'd not kill anyone at all, or kill themselves which is the same thing, seeing life as precious in all forms now that they've given birth to something living. And I believe men feel the same paternal tug, just sans a uterus. But again, that wasn't the scenario. As DB wisely notes, someone will have to die - and you'll have to kill them. Can you? It's easy to play it safe.

I think you're thinking, no parent could kill their own child what a ridiculous question. Maybe those parents who suffocate infants just don't keep blogs, but I know they're out there and they're not all psychologically challenged. They're part of the body human - not Satan's seed.
So we'd basically choose our progeny over the needs of our heart. We'd sacrifice personal emotional fulfillment as long as we could keep our children, is this what we're saying? (For Christian folk, in the bible God sort of did the opposite didn't He) Anyway it's noble, human, not surprising, but for some reason I thought a few folks skirted around the whole issue - if there's no other way, your partner would die, your child would live. And you'd live with...what? Well your child for one, and all that entails, all the joys and sorrows, the surprises and headaches, the moments you want to freeze in time.

Then I wonder - what kind of parent would you be? You were forced to kill your most beloved partner to keep your child. There's nothing absolute here, it can't be either right or wrong because deep inside we all want personal gratification from another human, yes? Not a child either, that's another form of satisfaction.

I also notice age played a part in this - if someone lived a long life you wouldn't have as much of a problem killing them off. Notice at a funeral people are not as sad if the deceased is over 75? If they're young, it's "They had their whole life" if they're old it's "They had a full life." I think we really go to great lengths using so many of these rituals and mantras.

But when WE cause the death? And it's not a crime but a proposal, a decision?

What makes one person more important to you? For parents, you've known your child it's whole life, I'm assuming - and know your partner alot less - and in your answers I hear "My child needs me more than my husband" ...... how do you mean that?

Is it "My child needs me more than my husband needs me" or even "My child needs me more than I need my husband" Could it be that it's not someone else being less "valuable" but a child being SO MUCH MORE PRECIOUS as to surpass any value we can assign to it? DO you need your child more than you need an emotionally fulfilling partner, a beloved, a soul mate, a help mate? Okay most of you are thinking, what's the difference without a child. Why have a life mate if I have no one to pass on my happiness and love to. But alot of people do it, they don't want or NEED a child. Don't we always see them as a bit selfish? Come on, be honest - DON'T WE?

Or just put ANY word in place of "husband" it's a matter of the NEW LIFE we place into the world and our reaction to it - our responsibility maybe? Well since when did it become incumbent upon people to be automatically responsible because they're parents? Let's be real. It's just something that should happen and makes us feel better when it does. But it just isn't so.

Does it have to be connected to love? Oh yes. But truly unself-ish love. If you love a child but are not responsible, not the best possible person to raise it, it's difficult but self-less to let a "better" person do it. Like it or not, our children represent something we believe is "ours" something we own, surely something we have rights to. In our heart of hearts, can ANYone ever be as good a parent as we believe we are? (Of course, but we'll never admit it, we'll rant and rave about how we're the only possible perfect person to raise our child - there's that instant "ours" possessiveness. What about a good child, were our parents happy with us as children? Did we fulfill their lives? More importantly, why should it be someone's responsibility to complete us, especially a child?

(Note: In another post I'll go into how we are the possessions of our parents legally from the instant they turn us into the government by filing a birth certificate - not that involved and absolutely true: check yours, is your name in caps?)

And even now in life, I think we're still trying not to disappoint our parents. It's nothing to do with love. It's more basic. Is your child at this moment trying to be the happy center of your existence, and weren't you, and me? I wonder how we, so young and untried, knew there were certain people we should always please, even without understanding the vocabulary. Could it have been something as basic as "I won't have a full stomach if I don't"?

If I were emotionally starved for affection because I chose my child over my partner, (and don't forget, I killed him/her) how would my child react to my sadness? Daily. What would I be silently teaching it? The nobility of parenthood? The need for a killing instinct? Or that it's their fault Mom's always crying.

For those whose parents are still living, now that you're no longer a child do you still feel beholden to them, feel obliged, to listen, obey, respect etc? More than likely. We learn to feel these things, I don't think they're part of the "human package" when we're born. So, as an older person now, and a parent yourself, you would kill your parents to save your child, you certainly as much as said so. I suspect your parents would've reacted very similarly to save you. We become what we're given as we grow, I'd say. There's really no set answer here, only passions. And most are "cop-outs". It's not "I'd do anything for my child" or "I don't like killing but my kid comes first" etc. It's a direct situation of choice where you will either kill your lover to save your child, or vice versa. That you love your child was a given in this scenario. In the real world, it never is - many can't rise to the emotion of even liking their progeny, they never bond and can't understand parental instincts to foster and protect. Still, look how much feeling most put into defending our unbreakable bond to our little ones! Incredibly human and perfect -- in a perfect world.

To the dear friend who decided she had to answer for both men AND women :-) your comment made me smile, I could sense the power behind those words, and to all else I think you were as honest as you could be in the moment, not needing a scripted second's worth of thought to form your answer. That says something in itself - "My child comes first". But what? Well, something very human to my mind. We seem hard-wired and almost programmed to "need" to care for small, helpless things, and surely our children arouse a unique, undeniable urge to cover them with our bodies if we must, to shelter them from life's unfair rules. Bringing life to bear changes you, men and women alike. Would anyone disagree?

Remember that little boy who fell down into the gorilla enclosure at the zoo, and the ape, our 99.9% genetically identical cousin, held him gently, understood something basic about how frail he was, took him out of the rain, etc. Yes, we're hard-wired alright.

An old story goes that a man was fully prepared to kill his son when asked to do it by someone he desperately loved.

Fortunately, I know of no deity demanding we sacrifice our children on a mountaintop to show our devotion.

Thank you all for explaining how you feel and why. I learned from this, as I hoped to.


22 comments:

GYPSYWOMAN said...

hi lady - so glad you're feeling all better - no fun not being our usual uppity selves, is it!?? anyway - this was a great little exercise in "what if" - and very neat post - glad you're back!

GYPSYWOMAN said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Cathy said...

To Gypsywoman: It was just a duplicate I deleted, my sun-woman friend. Never known you to repeat yourself lol you have far too much to say!

Tressa Bailey said...

It all just makes me dizzy...You do make us think!
I love my children...and my parents. I'd have no problem shooting a husband. but between my children and my parents I think I would shoot myself. It would be selfish and self serving because I would not be able to live having caused pain to the ones who cared for me or the ones I have loved above all others.

Sorry about the flu.... I had it too. A month of pure Hell. The workaholic that I am even took a full week off work. It gets better.

staceyjwarner said...

My parents...not a hesitation...I wouldn't want to kill anyone but parents it would have to be...

much love, stop by sometime!

Diane J Standiford said...

I ask you this? If you had to die from your cold or could pass the germs to your cat, which would die, would you do it? I wonder how many would kill a person b4 their pet. LOL If we are wired to protect the young how can soldiers kill so freely? Our wiring seems too easy to change. We do make lighter choices all the time between one loved one and another and I think we base those decisions on many things. We are still thinkers.

Big Mark 243 said...

I guess that this is a personal look at what is going on, not a referendum about people.

It's noble, human, not surprising, but for some reason I thought a few folks skirted around the whole issue - if there's no other way, your partner would die, your child would live. And you'd live with...what?

That was cowardly, those who ducked and dodge the issue. I am wondering where the eqovication in the question is? Many it seems, would fashion themselves a Cadet Kirk taking the 'Kobayashi Maru' test.

As soon as they begin their explination, their answer is voided. Finding reasons to justify what they did is for a trial in another court of reason.

I think that because many of the respondents haven't had to ask themselves questions of that nature, one where there is great sacrifice asked of and made for, they can't find a real answer.

If the question was asked, they wonder what the consequence would be if they could not answer. It should have been that they would die as well for indecision.

But what would be their motivation for an answer here? It isn't that they would worry about being faced with such a situation in their actuality. Perhaps their 'nobility' isn't inspiration to make them give a considered answer.

Dawn said...

I am so sorry that you have been sick!!!!

be well...

GYPSYWOMAN said...

oh, that was just a slippery little finger sliding over the return key too long and doin' it twice! so sorry!

hope you're still doing better!

Donn w/2nz said...

We've gone from the "We" generation of the 60s to the "ME" generation in the 80s to the "i" gens of the Millenials in 40 years!

100,000 years ago we started leaving Africa in a series of waves. Our species had been tweaked for a few million years but the desertification of the savannah forced us to seek a better life for our offspring.

On the one hand WE had paid dearly for having big brains by giving up the heightened senses of our inhabitants on the savannah.
On the other hand we developed forward thinking skills that made us keenly aware of our self and that our offspring were the collective "us" and needed to be protected at all costs.

It was an enormous (dangerous)investment for females to nurture and educate the young for 4 years before the children could start contributing to the group by collecting food..huge if you consider that our lifespans would have been around 20 years.

Now offspring (in our corner of the world) take 20 to 30 years before they start contributing to the the collective "us".
All of our technological advancements have allowed most of us to live almost 80 years..4X as long. On top of this there are far too many of us for the amount of resources available and the way we waste them.

We are supposedly still trying to make a better world for our children..do anything for them..but are we making any real progress?
Has all of this been for not? I suspect that a huge wave of viral culling is just over the horizon. A biological thinning of the herd may be at hand and Science will not be able to outmanoever the viruses that have been here for Billions of years.

I have 4 children and I worry that their future will be much scarier than my ridiculously naive Boomer experience. Still I would do anything for them so that "I" can live on.

*switchin' to decaf :)

Cathy said...

BIG MARK 243: Indeed, you discovered what I immediately was given thru answers, and though I kind of expected it to happen, I was hoping...but I get it.

I wouldn't say "cowardly" though, more like they're furiously stating with NO equivocation the usual mantra. And that's important when it's actually asked of you. Gives you a platform for what you believe to be obvious. But isn't that wasteful hence useless? If it's noble to be indecisive yet firm about a "cowardly" answer, I'm at least learning more about the human condition and why there's such an enormous increase in humans killing humans. Thank you for your input!

Cathy said...

DONN: I always thought we stood up to see what was OVER the tall savannah grasses, it having naught to do with a better life, just the curiously growing mind of homo erectus becoming homo sapien sapiens. I agree, we DID sacrifice quite alot just to harbor these big brains still the payoff seems equitable, in a almost-perfect world (who wants perfection!?) we can think "now what do I do with these hands?" only because of those brains. That's what freed our hands to carry the food and kids, it was the ability to think abstractly, or to imagine "tomorrow". Yes? No? And human women are the only animal to bring forth life in pain thanks to that over-sized brain; some die doing it. It makes it all the more important I believe that we preserve the integrity of our ability to process information from our sliding environment so we can evolve into whatever we're going to be in, say another 100,000 years. Donn I disagree about the amount of resources available compared to our number: there's plenty of what humans need and not too many of us, it's just that there's too many GREEDY humans causing that disproportionate situation of some eating and some not. Truly, this earth gives us all we need and we haven't propagated too much, it's the TYPE of human we've become as I say. When that kind of greed overtakes the average caring, generous human, it throws us off balance and makes it APPEAR there's a shortage of clean water and air and too many people. My opinion of course lol. Thanks for stopping by and adding such insightful dimensions to this issue.

Cathy said...

TRESSA: Thank you my friend but as I predicted, your answer like others didn't address the question - you managed to avoid it, quite humanly, by deciding not to kill anyone, or kill yourself which is the same thing. I would've liked to hear directly: which? kids or husband? I believe you'd say husband and it'd be honest, not because a husband is worth less than a child but because a child is worth so much more than anything we can imagine.

Cathy said...

TRESSA: Just can't stop talking to you lol! I do hope you understood my remarks above in the honest way I meant them. I read your answer over a few times, and I'm encouraged to hear you qualify what you thought of an act of suicide, that's it's self-ish and does no good. Even if your family would be better off, it's not an option is it. And I'm SO SO SORRY you were sick too! A week home? How did you stand it lol? Stay safe and well, and thanks for bringing so much of yourself to my place here. That's what makes it better. <8 :-))

Cathy said...

DIANE: You cleverly hit on the harsh indoctrination of the rookie soldier in boot camp, the stripping away of his core personality and instilling a conscious-lacking killing machine - but that's needed in war, so say the old soldiers who study it and I believe them. THEY know it best, WE just hate it. They fight it, so they train these men to kill babies without a thought. Unfortunately, years later the former soldier suddenly gets in his car and drives off a cliff. Doesn't know why, everyone's surprised, but it's those acts of murder coming to the fore of his memory I'd say. To answer your question: I'd give the germs to my cat to spare my life. And feel horrible, mourn, then give him a fabulous memorial party and invite friends to bring their pets, all of us look at pix and remember the dear cat I loved and killed to save my own skin. And it's because we're "still thinkers" that I'd measure the efficacy of my cat's potential against my human resources. I'm predictably human I'm afraid, Diane lol. Thanks for your always useful input!

Cathy said...

HEY TRESSA LOL! I realize you'd take out your husband no problem, I got that. Not one person chose a lover over a child. Boy this is better than college!!

Trees said...

I went back and read the previous entry to try and really understand your question and I have read this entry also with great interest. No you ask me would I kill my child or my husband, well that is a no brainer my husband is my ex and he nearly killed me several times, I would do him in cheerfully if I did not have to go to jail. Just kidding my friend. I really need to take the time to go over this entry and the previous one again as I wish to give you a very honest opinion of the many questions you raised in this entry.
Again you raise such thought provoking questions and really make us DARE TO THINK and I am truly greatful for your entries, your knowledge and above all your frienship.
I will be back hopefully to give you a good answer to your questions.

Cathy said...

TREES: As usual, seeing you here is so encouraging to me. I'd really like you to consider this whole issue - you don't have to answer each query because they really HAVE no answers. Certainly no "right" ones. But the one I put forth in the first entry: Which would you save, and your thoughts on it all. I realize why most women said they'd do anything it took to protect their child/children but that's really not the question is it. The scenario is "no choice" and as I say, I'm assuming people love their kids, that's not the issue either. You can still love your child beyond all reason and still make that sacrifice of their lives if it was truly the choice you felt honestly about. Some feel, since they can have other children but never another perfect soulmate, it could be feasible - that's thinking deeply instead of stating what everyone knows already: people love their kids. You know? Take your time dearest friend, I value your thoughts as you've known for years. Hope life is treating you decently! <8

Cathy said...

HEY DONN AGAIN LOL! I too, used to think a "viral culling" was nature's way of keeping our numbers in check proportionate to other animals and factoring in food supply. But the truth is, it's NOT nature - these viral strains have only been killing humans for as long as we've been living in such close quarters with the animals we domesticated - sheep, goats, pigs, etc. I blogged on it, it's called "Please Don't Be Afraid" check it out. A species-leap. Happened alot later than you suggest I'd say, though I agree certain virus strains have existed from the first cell replication. But they were never humanoid-specific, we hadn't evolved yet and wouldn't for billions of years. We're only about 240,000 years old as modern humanoids, that's it. Very early in the evolution game. Unless you can suggest some? Love to debate this with ya if yer game! Name one virus that's affected humans that's older than, say, 7,000 years. I can't think of ONE.

Donn w/2nz said...

WOW this really is Dare To Think!!!

We've also been breathing and ingesting virulent bacteria every single day for the last 250,000 years..and before that in our previous proto-types.

I think I read somewhere that there more bacteria in the large intestine than there are cells in the human body?

It's 2am I don't know if I'm making any sense..I'm actually more worried about the manmade concoctions getting out and going global. The Canadian Virology Lab is right here in Whateverpeg..10 mins away :(

let me sleep on it :)

Ana said...

Cathy,
I'm glad you are back. I was a little worried.
You have an award at my blog:
http://hellaheaven-ana.blogspot.com/2009/09/award-most-inspirational-blog.html

Come to get it if you want. It's not mandatory, of course.
Love you,
Ana

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