This subject has been in my mind lately, not only solely based on my own situation but that of those Saudi kids out there (and non-Saudi ones alike) that were deserted, things and situations which we all at some point or the next have been forced to endure.
Growing up abandoned, unwanted, sad, angry. Left alone in an unforgiving world to fend for ourselves. Ask many of these kids alike and our stories are all the same. Some of these other kids I grew up around would later go on to battle addiction with drugs, alcohol, bouts of severe depression, and homelessness along with other extreme habits and conditions, such as repeated run-ins with the law; issues which very commonly arise as the end-result when one has been left behind by the one person they might have needed the most.
Some of these kids I knew not only were left in very dire circumstances like me and my mom were, but were also left with a parent that was unfit to raise their child, by themselves or let alone, AT ALL. These children were subjected to various forms of abuse by the single parent adults left to care for them, as well as the parent’s dysfunctional associations. These same kids would eventually later on grow up with severe behavioral problems, along with many other unfortunate characteristics.
With no concrete set of values, beliefs, affection…or much of ANYTHING positive instilled in them during those early years when its most crucial to the formation of the child many kids that fit our category are left as sitting targets.
In my case my mother was very young when she had me and, thankfully, ruled with an iron will. She gave me the belief of God early on, but this didn’t mean it made our situation any easier. The damage had been done..first to her then to me. Because she was a mere teenager when she had me and had come from a background of cultural struggles herself, she was still attempting to find her own way. Now as a single parent things for her were tough, to say the least. Most of her problems became my problems..her stresses my stresses. During those crucial early years of formation I was afraid and stressed. Left alone with fear of even my own shadow, living day to day in a constant state of panic.
Stress that big at 4 years old is extreme. Worried about where we are going to live at 4 years old is extreme. How our rent is going to get paid or where my next meal is going to come from at 4 years old is extreme. What kid should be thinking about these matters at that age?? These extremes can and often do lead to later ones…extreme behavior. Destructive patterns during teen years and beyond, which was the case in my own life. To mask the pain and anger one begins to experiment with various forms of intoxicants to self medicate and this is where things can become really dangerous.
Today, with adulthood and belief and faith in Allah, I continue to climb and combat the negatives and said extremes but the long lasting effects of the damage done from then til now can be very difficult to shake free of.
But, again, what happens when the child has been left with NOTHING to believe in. Never taught, never acknowledged, never cared for. No chance at self esteem or peace….
What becomes of them now and later on down the road?