Nonchalant, calm, like we were discussing the weather or what to watch on TV later.
I wanted to laugh and say “How is that for an understatement?”, but the truth is, there is absolutely nothing funny about children being that strongly aware of hateful feelings for someone they care about. I felt sad for the kids.
Long ago I adopted the policy of “If you have nothing nice to say, then say nothing at all.” People’s actions speak for themselves, whether the kids understand it right now or not. They don’t need my commentary. Wrong is wrong, whether I explicitly point it out to the kids or not.
Unfortunately, that clearly hasn’t been the attitude adopted all around. The kids have been pulled into huddles as co-conspirators, urged to take pre-specified sides, punished for not hating me enough, for not turning against their father enough, for being children who just want to be loved and not deal with this churlish bullshit.
Who in their right mind would?
I have bitten my tongue until I was on the verge of severing it completely, and I admit there have been times I wondered why I bothered keeping quiet. If I ever wonder that again, I will simply picture an innocent child’s face repeating words of hate that never should have been spoken around the kids.
Kids=0; Hate=yet another point
*”Hate breeds in an empty heart” image created by me on ImageChef.com*