A Facebook friend of mine who writes for Mom.me posted a status update that really resonated with me today and I wanted to share it with you.
Like you need another status update in your life, but this one is worth it, I promise.
Monique Ruffin was driving when she spotted a boy, about 10, standing on a street corner with his pants down.
She didn’t keep driving, didn’t assume someone was already on the case, she turned her car around and went to figure out what was going on and how she could help, even though it took her out of her comfort zone. I’ll let Monique tell the story as her words are better than any summary I could write.
“I was driving down my street when I noticed a boy about 10 years old with his pants down around his ankles standing on the street corner. I watched him and others as they walked by him for moments while I sat at the stop sign. Just as I was about to drive away something told me don’t leave. So I made a u-turn and drove by him, rolled my window and yelled out, “are you okay?” He never responded to me or even made eye contact. He then relieved himself and continued to stand aimlessly on the corner. He never pulled his pants up. I then went to the group of people standing close by, two separate groups and asked did anyone know him or had they seen him before. They said no. So I parked my car and just stood close by, for what I don’t know, but it was clear that he was non-verbal and not as mature mentally as his body. He was clean and unable to help himself. Soon I saw a lady running from down the street toward him. She was older and had another younger child with her. She ran up and pulled up his pants, telling him, you can’t pull your pants down. He never uttered one word. He just walked away. She looked at me saying, he has autism, as she panicked. I started to cry and asked if I could help. No. She was crazed as one can imagine. I watched as she walked away behind him.
Soon the group of people came by and I told them he had autism and that’s why he seemed different. I told them it’s important to know people in our neighborhood and to help when we can. I couldn’t stop crying. They were concerned and afraid too.
I wondered why no one was helping and I heard my voice say, you help. Don’t leave him here. Wait until someone comes, call the police.
It’s weird being the adult in a situation when something terrible is happening. There was a part of me looking for the help, not realizing I was it.”
It is often our instinct to not want to get involved, either because we don’t want to interfere in somebody’s private business or we think that someone else will take care of the problem. But, regardless of our differences we’re all a part of the human family here, and if we see something that doesn’t sit right with us we should always at least stop and watch, as Monique did. She was looking for help, not realizing she was it. Make sure someone isn’t in need, and if help is needed, step up to the plate. It takes a village and we’re all residents.
Read more from Monica on Babble: