"And those kids you churn out: how is it possible? Youre out there breeding like feral cats. What exactly is the attraction of having sex with other meth addicts? You are lacking in the most basic aspects of hygiene, deathly pale, greasy, grey-toothed, twitchy and covered with open sores. How can you be having sex? You make my baby-whoring crack head clients look positively radiant by comparison."
Yesterday, we presented a station tour to a group of four and five-year-old pre-kindergartners. One of the poor kids had a "meth mom." The mom couldn't have been a day over 23 and I don't think she had a tooth in her head. She was so skinny that she practically looked like a skeleton with skin. Fortunately, she wasn't tweaking or picking away at the invisible bugs on her skin... but by looking at her you knew that she had either already been to that point or soon would be there. But enough about the mom. Fuck her. This sucks for the kid.
Her kid -- a daughter, I believe -- didn't do anything wrong. She didn't ask to be born. She didn't have any control over where she landed. But she's there now. Right now, she loves her mommy... And she thinks mommy loves her. (The latter might actually be true, despite the fact that mommy likes to pump herself full of poison.) But soon enough, mommy isn't going to be around. She'll be in jail... or dead. Where will the kid end up?
This family isn't from a wealthy part of town. Mom spends at least some of her working-class salary on drugs, so we know that the kid doesn't have a good home life to start with. Since at least one of her parents is methed-out, chances are that the dad is absent or just as bad. And with one parent on drugs, we know that mom and dad aren't running with a good set of friends. When the parents go in the slammer or into the ground, this kid will be hurting for some role models. Who knows where she'll end up... What she'll be doing... And how she'll run her own life without ever having solid parents to show her the way.
The early years are paramount and we've got fools raising (and ruining) what are pretty nice & normal kids.
In the nearly ten years I've been out of high school, more than a few members of the class I graduated with have found themselves in the penitentiary. Lately, most of the arrests have been for manufacturing methamphetamine. So, I guess it's a given that a certain percentage of all classes in nearly all schools will wind up in prison. And perhaps it's very cynical of me... But when we give tours and we talk to classes, I always wonder which one of the innocent faces will wind up with a not-so-innocent life.
We can rescue a kid from a burning home, we can extricate them from a car wreck, but we can't save them from shitty parents.