Octomom and the squalor…a perspective

Octomom – when to intervene

I’ve seen the pictures. Of course I wonder how one person can raise fourteen kids alone. I also read somewhere this family is on public assistance. It does make you wonder when the government should step in and assert some control over this family.

I think it’s funny that, for the most part, the people who are calling for the government to take action are the same people who are opposed to funding food stamp, welfare and other public assistance programs. I mean, in a worst case scenario, the government could take these kids away and then they’d be completely a financial burden on the taxpayers. I’m sure taxes pay for food and some of the housing costs for this family as it is. Take the kids away and we’d be paying for 24 hour child care too.

The real question is: when should the government intervene?

The answer is: When do you want the government to interfere with your family?

I mean how much do you really want the government telling you how to raise your children?

I’ve seen the pictures.

I can’t comment on the chair on the door. I can say it’s not a door to a bedroom; those always open into the room in any building built in the past half century or so. I don’t know what the door leads to or what’s behind it.

I’m not bothered by kids without pants. They’re at home, they’re toddlers. Half-dressed is a full-time way of life at that age.

I only have 3 kids and I have drawing on my walls too. My kids’ mattresses are also on the floor.

To be fair, we tried giving them actual beds but so much stuff gets ‘cleaned’ into the space under the bed, we removed the under-the-bed option. And the drawings on the walls? We clean off the ones we don’t treasure. The spider on Kitty’s door that she drew when she was 3, we keep that one. My experience tells me that if a 3 year old gets a crayon, no matter how much paper he or she gets, there will be drawings on the walls within zero point five seconds.

I don’t know about other toddlers, but I’d swear Kitty can teleport from a safe seat at the table to breaking something three rooms away. If it’s not teleportation, it’s near light speed.

Eight toddlers? I can’t comment on the sanity of Octomom, but I would not be sane. I certainly wouldn’t be able to keep up with the chaos. I would settle for a moderately controlled chaos.

As appalling as those pictures looked, nothing was actually filthy. I’ve seen unsanitary living conditions. While her home was messy and devoid of furnishings, it was not clearly unsanitary. As a child I can remember living in a home with no furniture when my parents separated. It was temporary, but I don’t remember being bothered by it. Kids don’t notice that stuff at that age.

None of the kids looked hungry.

While the standard of living is far below what I’d want for my family, it’s well above average when we look at the whole of the world. It’s far from the worst you’d find in this country too.

I’m personally appalled by the decisions that woman has made in life. Bringing children into this world is a responsibility, and not one we should take on without the means to do it right. Still, these are her decisions to make, not mine. We do and should have the right to raise our children as we see fit – with limitations regarding the welfare of the children.

Yeah, I think there should be intervention when the children are hungry, when the children are being hurt or under imminent threat of being hurt.

Yes, the government should provide food and housing for this family. The children didn’t choose this life. I can guarantee, even if she isn’t being fully attentive to every action of every child, that woman is earning whatever benefits she is getting as well.

Unless someone actually finds the kids are starving or being kept in cages or being beaten, we should leave that woman alone. Actually we should offer any help we can, for the children.

There are still more children in this country than people willing to care for them. This is not true across all cultures within our country, but the people who are looking to take in children through adoption are not usually looking for children that have been exposed to any form of abuse or who are from a different cultural background.

There may be a waiting list for people to adopt babies, but those people are not waiting for any baby; those people are waiting for a baby that meets a given set of criteria. There are still babies born every day in this country that no one wants.

Those fourteen kids are lucky to have a home where they are wanted. They could be luckier, but being wanted is far more important than having stuff, even if that stuff is clothing. Those kids were brought into the world because their mother wanted them. It doesn’t really matter why she wanted them. I don’t know why. I can’t imagine wanting fourteen kids. I don’t really know enough about any of the situation to judge. There is just not enough information out there to show she is doing anything wrong.

Poor choices are not always the same as wrong choices.


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