Not Logged in.
Book Jacket
All the Ugly and Wonderful Things
"A powerful, provocative debut ... Intelligent, honest, and unsentimental." -...
Summary and Reviews
Excerpt
Reading Guide
Author Biography

What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

Created: 09/10/17

Replies: 11

Posted Sep. 10, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
davinamw

Join Date: 10/15/10

Posts: 1358

Expert

What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

Amy is aware that her family faced three options as they became aware of Wavy & Donal's home-life. They could "come live with us, we could call Child Protective Services, or we could 'leave well enough alone.'" What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?


Posted Oct. 01, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
celiap

Join Date: 07/27/17

Posts: 32

RE: What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

My circumstances are not the same as Brenda's. I have no children. Because I do not want to bring up a child, my choice would be to call Child Protective Services.


Posted Oct. 02, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
jenniferj

Join Date: 09/30/17

Posts: 20

RE: What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

I would have called Child Protective Services. Although my heart would want to take care of my sister's children, my first responsibility is to the well being of my own children. Child Protective Services could perform an evaluation to have a better understanding of what it would mean if I did take custody, in terms of the children's issues and what they would need going forward. If after that evaluation my husband and I felt we were able to bring them into our home without harm to our own children, then of course I would choose that option. If not, I would try and maintain consistent visitation to be able to monitor the situation and advocate for them as needed.


Posted Oct. 02, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
ScribblingScribe

Join Date: 02/29/16

Posts: 60

Expert

RE: What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

I would have taken them in, gotten them help and tried to make it work. It might not have. Brenda had to watch out for her own children too. But she never even tried. Not until the very end when she acted out of guilt and did more harm than good. Getting Child Protective Services involved would have been wise, but I would have tried to keep and protect them.


Posted Oct. 03, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
cm28015

Join Date: 11/01/15

Posts: 27

RE: What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

That's a hard question. In a perfect world, I would most certainly do something. But the whole point of the book is what is family and what works. Brenda probably couldn't parent in a way that nurtured Wavy. Wavy needed sensitive, trained support to help her move from one family "norm" to another, seen as "normal" in our culture. Would child protective services been able to help her any better? Maybe, maybe not. There's no perfect answer. Do I think the things that were going on right? No. Do I think Child Protective Services helped Wavy's brother? No.


Posted Oct. 05, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
MarieA

Join Date: 10/12/11

Posts: 149

Expert

RE: What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

I don't think I would have called Protective Services, for I would have been reluctant to put family members into the hands of total strangers. I would have opened my home and my heart to Wavy and Donal.


Posted Oct. 11, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
vickys

Join Date: 04/21/11

Posts: 28

RE: What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

I believe I would have taken them in and worked to connect them to therapy and other help as needed. (I've had a handful of my younger daughter's friends with family challenges stay at my home when she was younger from a few weeks to over a year.)


Posted Oct. 13, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
jessies

Join Date: 11/09/15

Posts: 7

RE: What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

I would like to think I would have taken them in, but honestly I don't know. I can see how it would be a very difficult situation. I was disappointed in Brenda in that she didn't make more of an effort to keep track of them and make sure they were being cared for once they went to live with Val and Liam.


Posted Oct. 15, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
JulieAB

Join Date: 07/16/13

Posts: 44

RE: What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

I don't have children of my own, but I have nieces and nephews I adore. I would fight hard for them to stay with me.


Posted Oct. 15, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
mal

Join Date: 09/09/13

Posts: 155

Expert

RE: What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

With certitude I would have accepted Wavy and Donal with open arms. I would have moved mountains to help them in every way possible.


Posted Oct. 19, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
jackiew

Join Date: 04/26/17

Posts: 3

RE: What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

I am hoping I would have emulated the Grandmother's tactics, and accepted this smart, dysfunctional child on her own terms. Personally, I am not trained to handle behavioral problems as large as Wavy's, so I may have been less successful than I would hope. Brenda, being rigid and inflexible, refused to meet Wavy at her level. She set rules that made sense for her family, but made no sense to Wavy, and was unable to parent differently. I hope I would be more understanding, and try harder.


Posted Oct. 20, 2017 Go to Top | Go to bottom | link | alert
alisonf

Join Date: 01/31/13

Posts: 90

Expert

RE: What do you think you would have done in Brenda's circumstances?

I think Brenda made a decision to take them in based upon the guilt of turning a blind eye when her sister was still living. I think taking them in was the only option for her but she was not able to understand the harm she caused not discovering the full situation. I would have taken them in but would have involved the one person who understood the kids' situation, the person she most despised.


Reply

Please login to post a response.