Saturday, January 24, 2015
Baby Attacked By Ferrets
A one month old baby had one-forth of her face chewed off by the parents' pet ferrets. Her life was saved in surgery, but she faces many more surgeries ahead.
Her father said, ""I went over to grab the baby, and then the baby's... half the face was messed up from the ferret. So I called 911 immediately,"
Let's look at this statement.
"I went over to grab the baby,
The first thing we notice is that he tells the reason why he went to the baby. This indicates that he anticipated being asked.
and then the baby's... half the face was messed up from the ferret.
Note that his child is "the baby" and not "my", or with the child's name. He stops himself mid-sentence.
His description: "half the face was "messed up" from the ferret
We often find minimizing language in abusive and neglectful parents. Each one of us has a personal, subjective, internal dictionary. What does "messed up" mean to him?
Authorities reported the condition of the baby's face:
The ferrets chewed off the baby's nose.
The ferrets chewed off her upper lip.
The ferrets had chewed away a portion of the baby's cheek. This did not take place in seconds of measured time.
So I called 911 immediately,"
He, again, tells us why he called 911, but adds the word "immediately."
We seek to learn: Why would he feel the need to add the word, "immediately" since it is, or should be, unnecessary. It is often a signal of neglect, guilt, and possible delay in dialing 911. It is an unnecessary word making it "doubly important" in analysis.
He may have called "immediately" but he certainly knows that he will be questioned about the timing.
The news reported that the family has a lengthy history of child abuse and neglect. It is likely that child protective workers feared for the new born's life.
The mother, long involved with CPS said she only put the baby on the floor for a moment to use the bathroom.
The home was reportedly infested with mites, fleas, filth, and has 6 cats, 2 dogs, 2 turtles and the three ferrets. The only food found inside was a jar of peanut butter, a can of cranberries and some juice. There were four other children in the home, and officials said that the home has been "in crisis" for a long time.