Content note for filicide and violence against people with disabilities.
If I have to read about one more parent who says that they wish their child was dead, I will scream. Straight up, I have read “I wish I could kill my child” and “I would rather my kid just be dead already than have autism.”
If I see another post saying that “people with disabilities should be euthanized” and “disabled kids shouldn’t be allowed to have organ transplants,” I will lose it.
Seriously. This is what I keep reading lately. I’m not even exaggerating here.
You know what? Let’s have a little talk first.
Let me tell you what the death of a child is like – from the perspective of this grieving older sister. Let’s have a look at a personal hell.
It’s seeing a little child lying on a cold table, covered with a blanket and a stuffed toy tucked into his arm. It’s looking at all the beloved toys of a kid placed meticulously around a funeral home display – knowing that the child will never touch them again.
It’s reading the little notes from other first graders who are so heartbroken that their friend is gone, with one saying “I wish he didn’t die.” It’s the little drawings of angels frowning and stick figures crying, surrounded by the crayon scribbles of a child who cannot yet explain their grief in words.
It’s watching your mother read to your baby brother’s lifeless body, breaking down into tears every other sentence. It’s watching your other little brother so confused and struggling to comprehend why a child is gone. It’s knowing that your little sister herself never even got to say goodbye to him either, and that breaks your heart just as much.
It’s listening to your grandmother when she first breaks the news to you at seven in the morning, and replaying the absolute pain and distress in her voice for weeks in your head. It’s watching her grieve that she’ll never get to spoil her grandchild ever again.
It’s coming back to school and work, and crying at the mere thought of him. It’s staying up all night because you have to find that home video of you and the child playing together in the living room. It’s that soul crushing realization that you will never find it, and it’s gone. It’s that one little memory that creeps in, and renders you motionless, grief-stricken, and heartbroken for hours.
You really want to go here?
Would you like to sit in during a Disability Day of Mourning vigil? Would you enjoy sitting there as each and every single name is called out? Do you like the slideshow of the faces of small children, young adults, older individuals whose lives were violently and tragically taken? Can you sit through this and still justify their murders?
Let me clear this up: filicide is not some “mercy killing”. It’s pure evil and cold-blooded murder.
I would give anything to have my baby brother back. Don’t come to me with any justification of his death or any other disabled person’s death.
I’m so tired. This toxic culture of hatred makes me so sick, and I can’t understand it.
And, of course, I’m angry.
Honestly, I’m seething.
Is parenting hard? Yes.
Does that give you an excuse to harm your child? Never in a million years.
If you harm a child, you never deserved them in the first place.