Black Noser
February 22, 2007

Dewey Tied UpWhat is the fascination little kids seem to have with tying each other up? Is it a way to play with complete control at an early age? Curiosity about a complete loss of control?

A friend stopped over the other day to chat and said that he'd spent most of Monday night in the E.R. with the youngest kiddo. Immediately, I popped off with, "What'd he do?" You have to understand, this is a bright and creative kid, and those, of course, are the ones who get into interesting predicaments.

So "Joshua" tells me that he'd just gotten home, grabbed a little bite and was laying down for a wee bit of a nap, just drifting off ... when he hears screaming upstairs. By the time he gets up there, his wife,"Siobhan," is dealing with the screaming and crying and bleeding-everywhere six year old, so Josh corrals the other three kids and says, "What happened?"

The trio looks at the floor, nudges each other, shuffles their feet. Eyes huge, startled and scared by the blood all over their littlest brother, they say nothing at first. After all, it was an innocent little thing ... they'd never conceived that someone might get HURT.

Finally, the explanation begins dribbling out ...

"We were playing cops and robbers ...." Already there's something of a parental wince here as the family is dedicated to non-violence and peace, and while police are a necessary social job ... the playing of cops and robbers can get a little ... well ... witness the blood: violent at times.

Apparently, little "Tieg" (yeah, I swiped that name from Katherine Kurtz) was either the bad guy tied up in jail ... or perhaps he was a convenience store clerk being robbed. At any rate, the others tied him up.

To the ladder of the bunk bed.

And then they left the room.

Yeah. So you know what happens next ... Tieg struggles to get loose ... jerking around ... immobilized by scarves and t-shirts, he's reduced to wriggling and attempting to hop.

And then the hook slips off the top bunk ...

Yeah ... it was like that. Kid tied to ladder ... ladder tipping over ... straight into the dresser .... Apparently, Tieg caught the dresser with his nostril, ripping it open. (The nostril, not the dresser. I mean, the kid's tough, no doubt about that, but come on. Wood or flesh? Wood's gonna win.)

So, once Josh and Siobhan had assessed the damage, it was off to the E.R. And, thinking only of getting their son fixed up, they hadn't really thought about what to say when they got there.

"How'd he get this tear?" the nurse asked.

"Umm, well, he kinda fell. I mean, he caught the dresser with his nose."

Suspicious look. They cart the kid and Siobhan off to x-ray to make sure the nose isn't broken as well as torn. Josh sits and waits in the little room. He's got a moment to reflect on just how fast they got a bleeding kiddo out of the waiting room and into the E.R. when another lady walks into the room.

"I just need a little more history," she says. "For the paperwork, you know." Disarming. "So, he was running in the bedroom and he fell?"

"Umm, well, no."

"How did he sustain the injury, then?"

"Umm, well, he fell ..." and the light bulb goes off. Concerned about his son, somewhat embarrassed by his older children's game design theory, he'd not thought about this aspect. He and his wife both and hemmed and hawed around exactly what happened to Tieg ... not thinking that this might possibly look suspicious to the hospital staff. He was being "interrogated" by a case worker!

With that flash of recognition, he meets the case worker's eyes and relates the story in a little more detail.

Disconcerting enough that he'd been awakened from a nap by a screaming 6 year old ... and then the long drive to the E.R. ... waiting to see how bad it was ... what they'd need to do ... was it broken ... oh, and by the way, did someone beat the crud out of the boy? Having nothing to hide, Josh actually didn't mind the questions. If that's what it takes to save some other kid ... then it's all good.

But next time, he'll get his story straight before he walks in. There's nothing more disconcerting than being worried about your kid ... and interrogated for abuse all at the same time!

UPDATE: Having been sick and then with all the snow and then fog we've had lately, Tieg's missed about two weeks of school. So this morning, Siobhan takes him to school and as they pull up to the school, Tieg suddenly turns to her, horror-stricken.

"Mommy, is it ... is it still all black?"

Concerned that he was going to be self-conscious, she starts explaining that it was going to take some time to heal and yes, it was still black.

Scurrying out of the car, he pumps his arms up and yells, "COOOOOOL!" And he ran off to show off his battle scars.

Much thanks to "Josh" for letting me post this story ... and a huge kudos to he and his wife. I love listening to his stories about the kids because it's so obvious to me that they are the kind of parents I would love to be. They think, they reason, they talk, they interact with their kids. They talk with them, they explain things ... in short, they treat the kids like they have brains and feelings ... the kids aren't spoiled ... they have boundaries ... but they also know they are loved and safe and protected. (Unless tied up to a bunk bed ladder)
I hope, when I finally get around to adopting, that I can do the type of job they do.

Posted by Red Monkey at February 22, 2007 12:04 PM | Storytelling: She was, of course, supposed to be sleeping. | | StumbleUpon Toolbar Stumble |


MsDemmie said:

Thank you to all concerned for sharing this story.

Kids will be kids - they always have been and always will be.

Sounds like they are great parents with great kids ......... X

February 23, 2007 8:19 AM


blueyes said:

Even if it is the stupidest thing on how they get hurt you gotta fess up at the hospital else you wont be having any of them kids for long but that is funny lol I never did that when I was growing up.

February 23, 2007 11:45 AM


mike said:

All li'l "pissants" are resiliant...and always proud of their battle scars.

February 24, 2007 8:37 PM

lol, nice one...

February 25, 2007 11:58 AM


Toni Marie said:

I had a massive obssession for just tying people up or locking them up. I don't know who's dumb idea it was to have a lock on the outside of the toilet when I was a child, but hopefully whoever's it was paid for it. It wasn't unusual to come home and hear screams of let me in, or let me out, or someone help me untie this. I was good too, you'd be taking a nap in an arm chair, wake up to my angelic face drawing on you, go to shake me off and be unable to move.
I don't know why I did it though, maybe it was the sense of control, as a child who's family was normally to busy to play, I would tie you down so you were forced to spend time with me.

February 26, 2007 6:45 PM


6000 said:


Same problem last night, but without the binds. 0.6 face first into coffee table. Blood everywhere.
Kids will be... well... kids.

I was never like that.

(Was I?)

February 27, 2007 8:26 AM
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