Monday, September 3, 2012

"If You Only Knew" Needs to Turn into "Mind Your Own Business"

someecards.com - My business isn't your business; So unless you're my thong, don't be up my ass.
Yes, this is the most "correct" version of this sentiment I could find.

Don't worry, nobody's been getting all up in my business. (Honestly, I'm a boring old married woman/mother, so there really isn't much to "get all up" in. BUT IF THERE WERE, I'D DUST OFF MY PIMP HAND AND GO TO WORK.)

This morning [Sunday] in my newsfeed, I saw a Huff Post article that caught my eye: "Missing Matthew."

Okay, so the title didn't catch my eye, the description did, but that's several fuckin' pages down by now, and if you people have learned anything about me by now, it's that I'm LAZY.

Like, crazy-ass Kevin Spacey is going to MURDER me lazy.  Source.

The primary focus of the article is the author trying to deal with having sent her 15 year old autistic son to a special school, 3,000 miles away.  In her own words:

"My husband and I came to the heartbreaking conclusion that Matthew was no longer safe in thecommunity where he had grown up, and that his impulsive actions were putting others in peril. He needed more supervision, more than our family or our school district could provide."

As a parent, hell, as a human being, that is a heartbreaking situation.  And while this was a moving, heartbreaking, and ultimately satisfying article, the general focus of it is not what stuck in my mind the most.

You see, this article opens with the author taking her other son to his highschool freshman orientation where she's confronted by a woman:

"It was the mother of one of Andy's friends, a woman who always knew more about everything than the average person.
'I hear you sent Matthew away to school,' she said coldly.
'Yeah, it's hard, but I think it will be good for him in the long run.'
'Well, I think it's sad,' she said, then turned and walked away."

The author goes on in her article to explain to us (her audience) what the last year has been like.  And you know what?  I really don't agree with that.

Dafuq? Source.

The idea behind the author's inclusion of this seminal incident was to shine a light on how people shouldn't act  when there's no way they could understand the truth of a situation--usually because it's none of their business.  

"because it's none of their business." 

That's right, I just quoted AND bingo-ed myself. Source.

My problem is that even though this uninformed cow (and I mean that in the British sense) of a judgmental bitch essentially accosted the author with the sole purpose of forcing her opinion on her, the author still felt the need to defend herself and her choice--but not to the ignorant, arrogant, and thoughtless peer who,let's be real here, deserved at least a verbal bitching out if not a solid (and yes, very illegal, uncivilized, violent, and ultimately highly-fucking-satisfying) uppercut.

The Five Point Palm Exploding Heart Technique might be a little much.  Source.

The author felt the need to defend herself to a much larger audience.  And while I certainly can't say I wouldn't do the same thing, I still feel like it  detracts from the point.

Or at least the point that should have been made by the first part of the story.  (The beauty of being an English major: I can pick whatever in the hell I want out of a piece of writing.  You should SEE what I can do with the Bible  . . . or Fifty Shade of Grey.)

Or why the hell not both? Source.

Let's look at the facts here: the COW is not a friend of the author, just her son's friend's mother.  In proof of this point, the author later mentions when a "friend" calls her, so this COW is definitely not a friend as she's not even labeled in such a manner; if she is anything, she is an acquaintance at best.

I'm establishing a line of reasoning, here; now sit the fuck down
 before I have YOU stricken from the record, Mr. Mason.

Now I don't know about you, but when it comes to the nitty-gritty, core-of-my-life, family-type stuff, I don't go around sharing that with everyone.  And before you argue that the author regularly writes about the reality of living with her autistic son, I'm putting forth that she very well may NOT have written about a lot of the things in this particular piece had it not been for the COW.

Continuing on . . .

After "the incident," the author's 14 year old son finds her crying in the car and tells her:

"'You did the right thing, Mom [putting Matthew in the special school], . . . That lady wouldn't have said that if she knew what you've been through.'"



That lady shouldn't have said anything PERIOD, regardless of what she did or did not know.

I firmly subscribe to the idea that the ONLY time you should say something to a parent regarding their parenting is a) if you have been asked for your opinion, or b) you are genuinely concerned that something that parent is doing is harming his or her child (and even then, I'm thinking CPS might be a better option).

Jesus; that looks dangerous. Source.
Actually, I believe this about people's business in general.  And I do NOT understand why this is such a difficult concept to grasp.

Maybe it's because we used to be more of a community/family-based society and we still subscribe to that "everyone's business is my business AND IT NEEDS TO BE THAT WAY SO WE CAN SURVIVE" mentality.  Cancelling that subscription is long past due, folks.

Maybe it's because we shove everything online now for the whole damn world to see, and invite everyone into our business.  Guess what?  Not everyone does that.  Hell, the only mention you ever see of my husband online is exactly that, A MENTION.  And I have several Facebook "friends" (acquaintances would, again, be the more appropriate term) whose lives I know next to nothing about.  Why?  It sure as fuck ain't because they live charmed lives and have nothing to bitch about.  Just because a lot of people spill their guts about everything online, essentially inviting people into their business, doesn't mean that everyone does.

Well I know what I'll be planting next in Gardenville or Farmtown
 or whatever in the hell piece of Zynga crap people are playing nowadays.

I don't know what hell-spawned combination of ideas has made it seem okay to turn expressing your opinion on anything, to anyone--even something as personal as what a mother has decided to do with her own damn child--into an "it's all good and acceptable" free for all, but it's time we learn some fucking manners and mind our own damn business.  

I imagine it seems like I'm trying to have the best of both worlds talking about how I  love this article while thinking the author is sending the wrong message by writing it; how I understand the need to write for therapy and the desire to inform others who might be helped, inspired, and encouraged by my writing, but still think she went about this the wrong way; how I can be so glad this was written, yet shake my head about one of the underlying messages.

Fortunately, I live a black and white world with a seemingly infinite number of hues in between.

Not Pictured: "seemingly infinite."  Source

On a personal level, I'm glad she wrote the article, but what is portrayed as the catalyst  (the COW incident) disappoints me.  Write about the Matthew situation to help yourself deal with and accept your decision because YOU are having difficulty with it.  Write about it to help others who are in similar situations, or to inform those of use who can never even come close to understanding.  But writing it as a sort of self-defense because some cunt (HA!  I'll bet you thought I was going to say COW again) hit your sore spot . . . I just can't agree with that.

In explaining the situation and sharing these very personal, family details, that cunt's actions have just been given the okay.  

If she had known, she wouldn't have said anything.


You're assuming the brain is actually operating . . . Source.

It's not her son, it's not her family, it's not her life, and it's none of her goddamn business.  And I'd like to think that if I were in the same situation and able to get over the utter shock and hurt caused by this horrid person's total lack of manners, decorum, and class, that's exactly what I'd tell her (in my own charmingly sarcastic manner).  "Oh I'm so glad to know your opinion about my business that you know nothing of!  Make sure you teach that sort of behavior to your kids, and make the world a better place!"

Then I'd go home and seethe, and cry, and probably feel bad about the "teach that behavior to your kids" dig, but I'd only write about the choice I made about my son in such personal detail IF I had already planned to.

Honestly?  I really hope that's what the case is here--that this author fully intended to tell all about her situation, and include all the same details prior to being runover by the judgmental bitch train.  But as it's currently written, I don't believe that.

Feel free to prove me wrong.

I want to be proved wrong.

And, you see, I'm actually ASKING for your opinion.  


  1. I read that article, too. The mind-your-own-business-angle hadnt even occurred to me. Enjoyed this post very much.

  2. mmmmmm maybe the cow incident was the catalyst to her writing. A link to said article would be nice.. hint hint.

  3. Jilly Bean, look above Kevin Spacey's head a bit. "Missing Matthew" is linked to the story.