Thursday, February 8

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She called me a 'Mean Bitch', but I saved her life!

by Vernita Ramsey



When my daughter was a young teenager, she wanted to go to a party with her friends (a group of boys and girls) living in another town with a high crime rate.

I said no, and my brother who was a law enforcement officer in the town absolutely forbid her to go as well.


My daughter mumbled under her breath that I was a "Mean Bitch" -- (she thought that I didn’t hear her) and she ran to her room.

A day before the party, a parent of one of the teenagers who invited my daughter to the party called and asked me to allow my daughter go.

She explained that she was letting her son go because they would all be together in a group and if something happened they could protect each other.

So she felt comfortable letting him go.

I then explained to her that with all due respect, what she did with her kids in her household was fine and only her business. However, in my household “no means no!”

When a parent lays down the law, end of conversation. Being a single mother who grew up street-wise and witnessed a lot of crime in my neighborhood has thought me a lot of lessons.

And moreover I had an uneasy feeling about letting her go and so I stood my ground and said once again that she could not go.

The parent got offended because she thought that I was judging her parenting skills and that I felt my daughter was too precious to go to a party in a sketchy neighborhood.

I also politely let her know that I did not owe her an explanation as to why I said that my daughter could not go.

She asked me why I insisted she should not go and my answer was: “Because I said so” and “bullets don’t have any names on them!”

I’ve seen folks get trampled trying to dodge them. Kids no longer settle fights with their hands in today’s society.

The parent relented and my daughter was so furious with me that she stayed in her room the whole day with an attitude and did not speak to me the entire weekend.

Well, the Monday after the party the school informed the parents and students that there had been a terrible shooting at a party in another town attended by some of the students.

The shooters were still at large and that the authorities believed that they were not attendees of the party.

One student was killed and two others were critically injured.

There were grief counselors available for students and staff.

One of the students that was in critical condition, was the son of the parent that begged me to let my daughter go out with them.

My daughter wanted to go visit him at the hospital and when we arrived she was shocked at his condition. His parents were absolutely devastated.

They explained that some of the boys had an altercation over a girl with some kids that they did not know.

Someone pulled out a gun and starting shooting. My daughter's friend was hit while trying to get away.

His mom and dad apologized and thanked me profusely for not allowing my daughter to go.

They said that there was no way that the kids would have been able to protect her and that if I had not been such a Mean Bitch about the matter, we may have been having a different conversation. The boy is now in a wheelchair, paralyzed from the neck down.

In high school, he had a promising future as a football player. His parents were well-off and he wanted to hang out with children who did not grow up as fortunate as he did, so that he could get some Street Credibility (whatever they called it) and fit in.

I said a prayer with him and his parents and my daughter and I left the hospital.

When we got on the elevator, my daughter broke down and cried like a baby.

She said: "Mommy, thank you for being such a mean bitch and not letting me go out with them to the party."

She was really shocked seeing the reality of her friend's situation.

She realized that bad things that happen to people in real life don’t end up like they do in movies and music videos.

At that point she realized that I was only trying to protect her and I explained that unlike her generation, I did not grow up with a false sense of security or watching music videos and movies believing the unrealistic things that happened in them.

I experienced the darker side of life for real and it never ended up pretty.

It taught me to go with my instinct and gut feeling and if something doesn’t sit right with you, it’s best to play it safe.

As word got around the school about those events and how the kids who couldn’t go ended up being saved, I became the most popular MEAN MOTHER in my daughter's circle.

She learned a very valuable lesson that day.

***


Vernita Ramsey has been working in the finance industry since 1996.

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