Opinion

WATER COOLER: Did I do the right thing by helping a child?

OUR SAY

I had a quick dip at Tannum Sands on Saturday, like I do most weekends. Straight out of the water I was putting my hat and sunglasses back on, and dancing on my toes because the sand was so hot.

There was a family of five headed off the beach also; good thinking as it was just coming onto midday.

Dad was quick off the beach, already up around the boardwalk, with the eldest child in tow.

Mum was carrying the youngest, still a baby; she also rushed off the beach, running past me, her feet clearly copping a scalding.

Child 3, probably around two years or 18 months old, was left to her own devices. I thought that was OK; the expectation on her probably that she should leg it alongside mum.

But she didn't - she stood there for a while, before falling on her bottom and she started to cry.

I was ready to trot off the beach too, my toes starting to burn; and so held out my hand to this little girl and said: 'come on, you can hold my hand and we'll walk off together'. This was the best news to her; she jumped up, grabbed my hand and off we went.

But soon she was dancing on her feet, the sand burning.

So I whisked her up into my arms and we ran off the beach together.

I was quickly working through what on earth I was going to say to Mum and Dad, who were now watching this stranger with their child, with rather stern looks on their faces.
 

HAVE YOU QUESTIONED WHETHER TO HELP A CHILD BECAUSE OF HOW THEIR PARENTS MIGHT REACT?

JOIN OUR DAILY WATERCOOLER BY LEAVING A COMMENT BELOW.


I mumbled something about 'is that a second turtle nest, do you know' but was only met with silence from Dad who quickly took Child 3 from my arms.

I went on: 'hot sand' and 'she needed help off the beach' but it seemed everything I was saying Dad might have been able to take as a blight on their parenting.

Mum had nothing to say; just watching as I trotted past, back to my car.
 

What do you do when you see a child at risk?

This poll ended on 30 January 2016.

I help. No hesitation. I know my intentions are pure - 65%

I want to help but second guess myself. I know how we are taught to see strangers - 20%

I've helped in the past and have regretted it. Now I mind my own business - 12%

I don't help anyone for any reason - 1%

This is not a scientific poll. The results reflect only the opinions of those who chose to participate.

Plagued by their reaction, I spent the whole drive home wondering if I'd done the right thing. Yes, of course, by the child, but I realise now what my actions must have looked like to Mum and Dad.

I hadn't meant to suggest they had done anything wrong but my actions certainly left their parenting in question.

The only saving grace in my mind was the little girl who afforded me a cheeky smile and a wave as she walked away.

* Rowan Hunnam is the Editor of the Gladstone Observer

Topics:  editors picks



How to do Eat Street the right way

EVERYTHING you need to know to get the most out of your Eat Street experience and to avoid a food coma when you’re only one stall deep.

Don’t go chasing waterfalls…find them on these drives!

The Scenic Rim is just one place nearby that you'll love.

BRISBANE isn’t all bright lights and city slickers.

Science Festival seriously awesome

Don't miss the World Science Festival Brisbane!

CALLING everyone who wants to see something totally cool.

Drink where the cool kids do this summer

There are a bunch of new bars open in Brisbane, make sure you're there!

CHECK out these new funky bars.

Discover Brisbane’s laneway gems

Brisbane's laneways will surprise you.

NOT all of Brisbane City is as it seems…

Top five things to experience this summer in Brisbane

Tangalooma is amazing if you're keen for a dive, kayak or swim.

THIS summer get out and explore your capital city.

Your boots are made for walking these tours

Brisbane Greeters tours are a great way to learn the local history of the city.

YOU don’t need a bike or bus for a seriously good tour of Brisbane.

Council's hunt for $6.5m boost for projects to create jobs

JOBS BOOST: Council is vying for $6.5 million to help fund $14 million with of projects.

HUGE BID for millions worth of projects to bring jobs to Gladstone.

Industry heavyweights rejected, business loses $200K job

COMING: Efficient batteries for storing the energy created by rooftop solar panels look like a game changer.

INDUSTRY heavyweights backed it, but a Brisbane-based company won.

Owner finds Gladstone man living under home, police called

An Anglicare CQ housing manager says many people who have remained in Gladstone are experiencing financial stress.

THE MAN will be forced to pay hundreds of dollars he doesn't have.

Local Partners

Former Family Matters stare accused of child abuse

DARIUS McCrary, who played Eddie Winslow on the ’90s sitcom Family Matters, has been accused of holding his infant daughter over a pot of boiling water.

Bindi Irwin's birthday tribute to her dad

Bindi Irwin

Bindi Irwin has paid tribute to her dad on his 55th birthday

Reality TV show gives Maryborough a boost

*WARNING EMBARGOED until 9.15pm Monday January 30* Sean Hollands and Susan Rawlings pictured after their wedding on the TV series Married At First Sight. Supplied by Channel 9.

Maryborough looks good on reality TV show.

72 hours of things you can't miss in the Gladstone region

The Screaming Jets are making their way to Gladstone in 2017.

YOU CAN'T miss these things to do in the Gladstone region.

Buderim dad rejects gay son's emotional plea for second time

LOVERS: Grant and Chris have been together for more than three years, and Chris' parents refuse to acknowledge their son's fiance.

Son’s emotional plea rejected again by unmoved father

What's on the big screen this week

Ewan McGregor and Jonny Lee Miller in a scene from the movie T2: Trainspotting.

This week's new releases offer plenty of variety for movie buffs.

REVIEW: Under the Gun doco looks at right to bear arms

ARMED: A still from the 2016 documentary film Under the Gun by Stephanie Soechtig.

An in-depth look into America's gun culture.

Gladstone's 20 cheapest properties on the market, all under $150K

DIRT CHEAP: 5/239 Sun Valley Rd, Kin Kora is selling for $140,000

PROPERTY sellers drop prices as houses and units sell for bargains.

$140k damage: landlord says property trashed, contaminated

He had what he calls "the tenants from hell"

Submarine, buses and 3000 tyres removed in $100K clean up

The list of things removed from this property is beyond astonishing

Popular island resort sells to loaded international investor

OUR PICK: Chris Foey's colourful shot of one of Gladstone's great tourism hot spots, Heron Island.

International investor snaps up piece of Gladstone paradise.

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!