Gorillas and hair straighteners

Gorillas and hair straighteners have a lot more in common than you have ever thought.

We were at my parents’. A cheerful winter evening. My 18 month old was toddling through the place happy to find new discoveries around every corner. Everyone was happy and in a good, play-with-the-kiddo mood.

My little explorer saw my sister in the bathroom and walked in with a big smile and curious eyes. My mom came to join us, we were all watching her being fascinated by make ups, and hair styling. We were still watching when she reached the hair straightener, and it was to late! There was no time to prevent what had happened, so we cuddled and put the hand in the cold water.

Gorillas and hair straighteners

You see, that hair straightener had just been used seconds before, and though switched off, it was still hot. My sister had put it back in place as always. 3 adults watching and none of us realized the danger, till it was too late.

An accident is something that happens by chance. Something that happens unexpectedly and unintentionally, and with kids they happen no matter how careful parents are.

When we got to the hospital (Poland) the first thing I heard was “what kind of a mother are you?! How did you let this happen?”, “where were you? Don’t you know how to care for little children?”. More insults followed. Being used to the Swiss friendly smiles and support of the medical staff, I was baffled beyond comprehension. I heard the nurses talk about me – the reckless mother – on the corridor, pointing their fingers at me with a smirk.

My daughter being hurt was scary enough, but being treated like a criminal was too much, and beyond ‘unfair’.

What kind of medical care was that?
How could anyone treat any parent like that?

The similar thing happened to the mother of that poor boy who fell into gorilla enclosure in Cincinnati. Don;t get me wrong, I see the difference between the Gorilla life threatening situation, and a slightly burnt hand. My daughter’s hand accident could never equal a gorilla dragging a child through the water.

Yet, the reaction of the crowd was similar to the one I experienced in that shameful hospital.

That mom experienced hate in an awful way. Death treats, her personal details has been published. She has been punched in every possible way. Damn you internet.

It was an ACCIDENT.

Let any one of you who has never witnessed his/her child get hurt be the first to throw a stone at her.


Kids fall down, fall off, bang their heads against protected tables, slam their precious fingers with doors and drawers while we’re next to them. Shit happens, and with small children it happens more often than any childless person can imagine. Cherry on the top of that cake? It usually takes just a second.

Parents who take their kids to the zoo and turn their head for a second are just parents.

It is very sad that Harambe, the beautiful silverback giant, had to die. An endangered species, an animal that future generations must not see. It is a tragic day when a decision has to be made to kill one. He was beautiful, and he will be missed. The zoo keepers are mourning, there is not one single person who isn’t sad after that terrible loss.

Harambe would do anything to protect his mates, why can’t we learn from him? Why can’t we protect, and be compassionate towards a fellow member of our species?

If it was me I wouldn’t hesitate to put away 5 silverback gorillas if it could save another human being.




5 thoughts on “Gorillas and hair straighteners

    • oh yes, that was almost 2 years ago. It’s just that how I was treated in that hospital will stay with me forever. They acted as if I took the straightener and burnt her hand on purpose. It was stressful enough dealing with the injury, parents don’t need fingers pointed at them when their child gets hurt, because even though we know it was an accident, there’s always this stupid guilty voice inside our heads saying “you could have prevented this”, even though the brain knows “you couldn’t have”.

  1. These are my thoughts exactly. People are so quick to criticize, as if they have never done anything wrong in their life! Accidents can happen, and they are just that- an accident! Glad your daughter is okay!

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