Ask Amy: I saw someone hit a child in public

Dear Amy: I’m a 30-year-old gay man who doesn’t particularly like children.

While grocery shopping, I saw a man slapping his baby in the face. The child started crying and sucking his thumb.

I was shocked and disgusted. Is there anything one can do under these circumstances? I feel guilty for not supporting an infant who appeared to be less than 2 years old.

No Parent: Thank you for recognizing that, even if you don’t like them, young children are helpless human beings who should not be assaulted, by a parent or anyone else.

Yes, you should have tried to support this child. Ways to do that would be to say, “Whoa, whoa — wait a minute. Is everything okay here?’ (You don’t want to risk an escalation by responding too aggressively.)

And then you should also contact store security and/or call 911. This incident may have been captured by the store’s security cameras.

Slapping a baby in the face is assault and abuse. Yes, it is shocking and disgusting, and this person (who may not have been the baby’s parent — or even related to the baby) needs to be stopped and this baby protected.

Dear Amy: This week is the first anniversary of my mom’s death. She died suddenly of lung cancer two weeks after her diagnosis. I’m still very upset. My parents were married for over 40 years.

My dad started dating a woman less than two months after my mom died. He just announced that they are engaged and getting married next month.

The last time I was with him, I was taking care of my sick mom, and the next time I go back, a new woman will be staying in her place. I’m glad my dad is happy — he deserves it — but I’m not ready to get involved in that part of his life.

I couldn’t even bring myself to congratulate him.

Should I feel guilty for not wanting to attend the wedding or spend time with the two of them together?

Sad: My condolences on the death of your mother. This is a loss that you will process in many different ways for a long time. There is no one way to grieve her loss, but one thing you may be discovering now is how close grief and anger seem to be.

My point is that “sad” can sometimes feel like “crazy” and I think it might help you realize that.

There is evidence that men tend to mate quickly after a loss. Why is this?

Sometimes, experiencing a sudden and tragic loss leaves a person grasping at life. People who have been happily partnered for decades crave the kind of comfort and stability they’ve experienced.

Men often benefit from their wives being skilled at home, in addition to being the emotional caretakers of the family. They want more of it.

And maybe people who remarry quickly are trying hard to avoid the pain you’re experiencing now.

You should communicate honestly with your father. You’ve never met the woman he’s marrying, so be honest about your feelings without judging him—or her. Just express your continued sadness and tell him that you know he deserves to be happy, but that this is difficult for you.

It’s important to recognize that it’s not about your mother or you, it’s about him — and he thinks he’s moving on.

If you were getting married, you would want your father to accept your choice. Accepting his choice (even if you’re not ready to see it) will be an important part of your relationship with him.

If you decide not to attend the wedding, you should plan a trip to see your father and meet him as soon as you can. If you have a partner, sibling or close friend who could do this with you, it can help you to unload your feelings and talk about this experience.

Dear Amy:”Early retirement» he lived with his parents and felt lonely and isolated.

Having recently moved to a new city, I’ve been amazed at how many people I’ve met by joining a climbing gym and meetup groups. I have met so many friendly people at my age (30 years old). Plus, it’s a healthy activity!

I would offer this advice to anyone who feels isolated, stuck or bored.

Climbing: Excellent recommendation.

©2022 by Amy Dickinson distributed by Tribune Content Agency

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *