Social Question

Patty_Melt's avatar

Why have thirteen kids you don't want?

Asked by Patty_Melt (9778points) January 16th, 2018

I just heard about the tragic family in California where poilce found thirteen siblings chained and locked up. There were adults who had been prisoners since childhood.
How does a family like this happen?
If people hate their kids, why keep having them?
Why not give them over for adoption?
I can’t get my brain aroud this.
Thoughts anybody?

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29 Answers

ragingloli's avatar

always fresh meat in the pantry?

janbb's avatar

I don’t get it either.

filmfann's avatar

Never know when you might need a kidney.

imrainmaker's avatar

Some parents can be insane.

kritiper's avatar

Pure insanity!

Kardamom's avatar

I was listening to the press conference today. Apparently the parents were very religious. I’m not sure which religion they belong to, but some religions frown upon birth control, expect women to be fruitful and raise children. I suspect that (at least the mother) might have some mental illness as well. They said she “seemed perplexed” that the authorities had shown up asking about the kids.

It’s a very sad situation. I don’t recall them saying anything about the father, but I’m guessing that he too might have some mental illness, and probably held some sort of “religious male dominance” over the wife.

johnpowell's avatar

Isn’t locking them up wanting them too much?

Patty_Melt's avatar

OMG, @Kardamom! That is just unthinkable. To not use bc because of your religon, yet torturing your kids. Could they actually believe their god would approve?
There MUST be insanity in both parents.

LornaLove's avatar

They didn’t want them? I hadn’t seen that news. From the news I’ve seen here in the UK, they seemed from the photographs taken a few years ago to be very well taken care of, I suspect mental illness has taken hold and this is how it manifested. I noted that their hair was shiny etc., they didn’t appear malnourished. The torture part I am unsure of? They were chained to beds, not actually tortured. I know both are abuse. The mother’s eyes look mad, for want of a better word. I wonder how it will all pan out?

NomoreY_A's avatar

Get a rope and a lamp post. Problem solved.

Demosthenes's avatar

From an interesting speculative article I read on this:

“The world the Turpins created for their family had so little contact with others – Louise didn’t work, David was apparently not sociable and the children were home-schooled – that they may have considered their actions normal. Protecting their children from prying eyes became a way of life. They may have thought that what they were doing was right. But as time went on, they might have become more desperate and only able to control their offspring with threats and chains.”

Obviously we don’t know for certain, but it brings to mind an image of cultish families who believe in having as many kids as possible and keeping those kids as isolated, sheltered, and subdued as possible, and this becomes increasingly difficult to achieve, especially if the family can’t provide for all the kids financially; as a result, the parents’ actions become more erratic and desperate. The article also referenced the way some of the “before” photos portray the children almost as novelties and decorations: always wearing identical clothing and serving as a backdrop for the parents’ photos, not being treated as individuals. That’s reading a lot into it, but it’s something to consider.

This case is interesting because it occurred in a claustrophobic housing tract (when I first heard the story, I was picturing an isolated ramshackle compound out in the woods), because there are “before” pictures on social media that reveal normalcy, that do not show emaciation. The downward spiral must have been very quick and dramatic.

Patty_Melt's avatar

Oh wow. The tidbits you guys are coming up with… what a gruesome, confusing situation.

When I was still living in Reno, a family was found to be starving their kids. The oldest managed to sneak out, and got help. The poor things were so thin and tiny. Of course, when they showed the adults during the trials, all of them were obese.
I hear these stories from time to time, in various locations, but thirteen. Wow.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

The family of the mother live in east tennessee. Apparently she ran off at 16 to get married, cut all ties to her family and has not had contact with any of them since.

KNOWITALL's avatar

It’s a bad situation and it does seem to be affiliated to their religion, but there are wacko’s of all shapes, sizes and denominations. I knew something was off as soon as I saw dad’s Moe hair cut.

ucme's avatar

Because sickfuckery & shit

kritiper's avatar

I heard on a report that “God” supposedly told them to have all of those kids. Too bad “God” didn’t tell them to put loaded shotguns in their mouths and pull the trigger!

CWOTUS's avatar

Well, come on. No one sets out to “have thirteen kids that they don’t want”. But… they decided the first one wasn’t quite up to the mark, so “Let’s try again!” ... and so on.

Darth_Algar's avatar

They were Pentecostals? Why doesn’t that surprise me. Never met a Pentecostal who didn’t strike me as fucked in the head.

flutherother's avatar

I suppose they must have wanted them though clearly not for the right reasons. What I find strange is that this dysfunctional family didn’t live in cave but in a normal house in an ordinary American street. Did nobody ask why the children didn’t go to school? Did the neighbours have no suspicions over the years that something very abnormal was going on?

KNOWITALL's avatar

@flutherother They were home-schooled. In my area Pentacostals are the ‘weird’ ones who wear dresses and don’t cut their hair, very much left alone by regular society. Kind of like the Amish in a way, you don’t ask questions much because it makes them uncomfortable.

ARE_you_kidding_me's avatar

Here pentacostals handle snakes, I’m not kidding. When Pentacostal and tabernacle are seen written together it’s usually a dead giveaway.

tinyfaery's avatar

Perris, CA is a pretty hick town.

Rarebear's avatar

Fucking neighbors. They’re complicit.

MrGrimm888's avatar

When I hear about stuff like this, my first thoughts are “I wonder how many more things like this are going on?”

My second thought is ” more proof that there is indeed no all powerful, loving god.”

The truth is stranger than fiction. This is a strange thing indeed…

Patty_Melt's avatar

I know what you mean. I found myself trying to picture all the homes in my neighborhood, and have I ever seen anything that I should have thought about more than I have.

I saw on the news today a neighbor of theirs said the parents would have them out in the yard marching together for hours each day. WTH??!! He never thought how wrong that is?

Dutchess_III's avatar

From this article:

“The victims were provided with food and beverages after they claimed to be starving.” Um, you think?

“However, the parents were not able to immediately provide a reason why their children were restrained in that manner.” “Oh, I have a VERY good reason, officer. Give me a minute to remember what it is.”

Sometimes reporting borders on idiocy.

ragingloli's avatar

In a christian country like the colonies, what more reason than “god told us to do it” do you need?

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