This Woman Called the Cops on a Mom Struggling With Her Son -- Here's Why She Regrets It

Megan Orr Burnside/Facebook

Moms often speak of the dangers of overt mom-shaming and actively advocate against it. Still, we're not always too keen to tackle something just as bad that almost all of us have been both a victim and a perpetrator of: making snap judgments about other parents. After calling the police on another mom because of her son's behavior, one mom is speaking out about why she regrets it so much.


Megan Orr Burnside says that she and her husband were in Tennessee "a few years ago" when they visited a gas station and came across a woman who was struggling to get a boy -- who looked to be about 10 -- inside of her car. "He was screaming and she was so angry and frustrated," Burnside wrote in her Facebook post. "We watched her get him in the car and there was a lot of physical fighting in the car. It looked like she was hitting him as well, so we called the police."

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Burnside shared that she and her husband didn't stick around once the police came, instead leaving the professionals to handle the situation. But that wasn't the last they heard about the boy and the woman. "We then got a call and they told us that the boy was autistic and she really struggled with him," the mother wrote. "She had even asked for the police's help in the past to deal with him because he was very violent. They said they have been helping her and she's doing the best she can."

It was then that Burnside began to have an eye-opening realization. "In my eagerness to protect the child, I neglected to offer help to the mother," she said. "We sat and watched her struggle and called her in. I have felt guilt even years later that I didn't get out of my car and offer her some help."

Megan Orr Burnside/Facebook

Years later, Burnside says she recently came across a similar situation in a thrift store: a woman with two young children who was clearly "frazzled" and overwhelmed when her boys were acting up. While others stood around watching the mom "blow up," Burnside decided to reach out to help. "I remembered the experience I had in Tennessee and walked over to talk to the little boy and put my hand on his foot. He calmed down. The mother was so frazzled and apologized," she wrote. "I told her she was a good mom. I told her everything was going to be okay. She cried, guys. She CRIED as everyone else watched her struggle with her burden."

Burnside shared that she completely understands that there are instances in which the authorities are better equipped to handle things, but she also firmly believes that stepping up to help others is equally important. 

The mother also wrote that our snap judgments of other people -- especially other moms -- do nothing but harm those who are in need of our help. "It's time to stop judging each other and start helping each other, or we will only perpetuate isolation, depression, addictions, violence, and suicide," she wrote. 

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"I know I have been guilty [of] doing this very thing and I see clearly how I probably perpetuated the problem instead of helping to uplift and assist others. I am grateful for reminders (even painful reminders) that we are not that separate. We are not that different," Burnside shared. "True change comes when we are given love and help, not condemnation."

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