Child Abuse Story So Twisted You'll Wonder Why Mom Wasn't Locked Up Sooner

bleachImagine the worst case of child abuse you've heard in the past few years. Now double it. You might be somewhere near the horror of what happened to the Washington State toddler who had bleach repeatedly poured in her eyes.

And now for the coup de grace. The woman charged with this heinous cruelty is the girl's own mother. Jennifer Mothershead (hard to believe, but yes, that's her real name) has been charged with first-degree child assault for allegedly causing permanent vision damage to her then 15-month-old daughter in May 2011.

I have just one question.

How did it get this far?

Pardon me if I sound naive, but I don't think a normal person simply wakes up one morning and says, "Today, I think I will become a monster." And monster is really the only word I can use to describe the kind of person who pours bleach into a child's eyes, describing it as "eye drops" to "treat" an eye infection. A "mother" certainly wouldn't do that.

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So if Jennifer Mothershead did this to her daughter, she is a monster, plain and simple. How did someone not notice this side of her before? Why wasn't this little girl already living with her father (who is now her legal guardian)? I don't mean to shift blame for this despicable act to anyone else.

But when child abuse is this depraved, I have to wonder: weren't there signs that this person was not fit to care for a young life? Didn't someone see something was ... off? Maybe they didn't. Maybe this is just my reaction because I want to live in a world where there are signs, where we can prevent children from suffering such unspeakable horrors. Sadly, instead, I live in a world where there are people who pour bleach in the eyes of an 18-month-old child.

Did you ever have the feeling that someone just was not fit to be a parent? What tipped you off?


Image via Vox Efx/Flickr



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MrsNe... MrsNewman

Unless you see the abuse first hand, or the physical marks left after wards ... you can't really just look at a person and say, hey this person abuses their child. Most people keep it a secert and are very good at hiding it. 

Im glad the baby is with someone else now. Hopefully her father has more common sense than her mother. 

nonmember avatar mamabear

@FemaleMIKE-that was baby Peter Connelly.I cried so hard reading that story.

Vicki Moore

no reason at all for someone to pour bleach in anyones eyes, let along a BABY! defenseless and completely reliant on the parent, the one person thats supposed to love and care for them. wow so sad....

Joan Neville Buffa

Dear Angelanscalf89, Don't punish yourself any longer.  It is unbelievable to think that one so inhumane would abuse her precious children.  I know it's very hard to bring yourself to say something when the excuses come back as they were fighting.  When I was 15, I had a friend whose mom took in her husband's illigitimate child.  He was locked in a closet all the time i knew them, called crazy and ate his own feces.  To this day I wonder what's happened to this poor soul and wish I had called the cops.  My excuse at the time was that I was afraid of the step-dad.  I hope they get what's coming to them.  Bless you Angel, your heart sounds so broken.  God will take care of everything.

Doreen Prescher Heller

Yes I have experienced 'signs'....and I did something about it.  The kid is no longer with that parent.....

Melissa Papst Czemerda

Sad to say but our legal system will rarely do anything to prevent crime. They can only react after the crime is commited. Now a husband can have a wife commited if he suspects mental illness. If it's just a boyfriend  he would have to take her to court for custody if he suspected she was a bad mother. Personally I think people should be required to go through at least a parenting class when they are expecting. They could teach them about the repercussions of child abuse and what to do if you feel the urge to abuse your child.

With so many single moms these days, I think part of the blame should be put on absent dads who should be there to stop this. Even if the mother doesn't abuse the kids a lot of times the new boyfriends will. If she wasn't worth marrying why did you knock her up in the first place? It takes two parents to make a baby there should be two parents there to raise it.

In the end, I really don't understand why people have children if they don't want them or even hate and resent them. Why not give them up for adoption?

Nicole Schanda

I had a very close friend in high school that got pregger. So when her mother threw her out. my mom took her in. She stayed with us for a year and then left with the child and did not allow us to see her or child. ^ months later we were allowed a weekend visit with the child. She was bruised and scared. Obviously neglect. We called cps emmediatly. They did home visit. Even though the mother and boyfriend lived in a condemned trailer with no water or electricity ( covered in dog fieces and roachs. We were told being poor is not a crime and to stop abusing the systeam. CPS left her in her mothers care for years until at 7 yrs of age and a new baby in the house the dea did a major drug bust and found out that both kids had meth poisoning. because mom and another new boyfriend were cooking meth. Calling CPS does not always help. This country is failing most of the abused and neglected children.

Desti... Destiny907

And yet we can't order some people to be sterilized! WHY NOT?    I would love to see mandatory full castration for repeat molesters, too.  

People get penalties for things like this, get out of prison, and just do it all over again.

nonmember avatar brrrr

sadly even if you have the feeling a mother will end up doing harm to her child, there's really nothing you can do until it happens. mothers are pretty well protected and have every right to keep their child in their custody unless they do harm to their kids. and thats the thing, they cant lose their kids until they actually do harm. :\

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