I was unfortunate enough to be stuck in an A and E department for 2-3 hours the other afternoon. The only thing to do was people-watch. There were several elderly ladies who had had falls, a teenage girl who was constantly being sick, two workman who were limping and many more walking wounded. Among them was a mother and her baby with a rash, who was probably about 18 months. He was strapped in his pushchair with nothing whatsoever to occupy him. His mum was talking on her phone, texting, listening to music on her head phones and looking out of the window which was too high up for him to see.
He had nothing to occupy him whatsoever! The best thing he could have had was otherwise occupied with her own things.
The only words she said to him were 'no' and 'stop that'.
He tried making her laugh to get her attention, he tried wriggling to get out, he cried, he made eye contact and jargoned, he pointed....indeed he tried every bit of his communicative repertoire but all to no avail. In the end he just screamed and then sobbed!
This made me feel really sad. The mother obviously cared for him. He was clean, fed and his physical needs were met but he was being neglected! The mother would not have sat there for all that time with nothing to do yet that's what she expected of her son.
I maintain that all parents want the best for their children but they need to know what that is. Let's have a public information drive so parents realise they should be talking to their babies and young children! It took a while before 'clunk, click every trip' took off but now everyone wears their seat belt. What catch phrase can you think of to headline the campaign?