Thursday, 2 October 2014

A sad story from the past.

I spend far too much time watching the television these days and am watching things that I would never have subjected David to.

He would have hated some of the hospital dramas I an currently glued to.

In something from the past that I watched tonight there was a mother giving birth to a baby already addicted to the heroin in his mothers blood stream. They had to wean it off the drug slowly.....

It reminded me of the time when I had a small ground floor flat close to the town centre in a heavily industrialised northern town.

The couple above me were drug addicts and had a small baby.

That was when I found out that babies could be seriously affected by their time in the womb.

One night after hearing the baby cry for literally hours I went up the stairs to see if I could help. The young couple were out of it....the babies screams were not reaching them...

I didn't know what they had taken but the baby needed help. I took him downstairs and fed him on ordinary cows milk which was all I had. Once he was full he slept from sheer exhaustion. I took him back upstairs , changed his nappy and put him to sleep in the drawer they used as a crib.

The next night was the same. During that week I fed him several times but he often wailed afterwards. The couple had no idea I was there most of the time.

Finally I got help. I had a friend who was a health visitor...she came one night and followed me into the upstairs flat.

The next morning she returned to explain to me that the child had to be removed from the parents because he could take in drugs through his mother's milk so it was best that he was taken to hospital to have a chance of survival.

I wept both for the child and his parents....

It was one of those occasions when trying to do the right thing seemed to end up by being entirely the wrong thing!

I never knew whether the baby survivd or ever went back to his parents...I moved soon afterwards...but I had forgotten all about it until tonight...It was 50 years ago....

This could be the moment to wean myself off the hospital dramas....


1 comment:

  1. Jean, you did the right thing at the time. We can always look back in regret, but if you hadn't acted, than the child might well have died. The child was being neglected and the parents had a choice. Baby or drugs, they chose drugs. Poor choice in the circumstances. They, while addicted too and using drugs were unfit parents.

    Hopefully the child survived and found a foster home or adoptive parent who had the proper care and sense of responsibility to raise the child properly.