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... to not understand "It's none of your business" mentality.

(67 Posts)
TooHotToFuss Fri 24-May-13 23:36:11

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SolidGoldBrass Fri 24-May-13 23:42:06

Some things are not anyone else's business. Of your examples above, a woman smoking while pregnant: Not your business. Pregnant women are people, not public property. Cheating partner? Not your business unless you know the other partner very well and owe him/her some major loyalty and you have evidence that cheating is going on. Dirty child? Some kids are grubs. You wash them, dress them, take them out of the house and they immediately either shit themselves or find the nearest puddle and roll in it. When DS was a toddler I used to routinely travel with three spare sets of clothes for him. A mucky kid might well have gone through his/her entire wardrobe in the course of a day...

However, seeing someone being assaulted - yes, that's the business of any bystander to call the police (not necessarily to wade in, particularly if you have your DC with you).

AgentZigzag Fri 24-May-13 23:42:49


Wondering 'WTF?? shock' about other people makes the world go round.

Whether you should make a deal out of it is another matter, if an OP was asking whether they should take it further and act on their judgement asking what other people think, that would be helpful.

Otherwise it's just talking about different peoples standards and expectations, which is interesting to read.

I'm always in awe of the scenarios posters can hypothetically spin round the few words in an OP, there's definitely a MN way of thinking posters quickly conform to.

I agree with SGB.

People are far too nosey and judgy and preachy, all in the name of "being a good citizen."

Sometimes, well most of the time actually, people should just butt out.

Alisvolatpropiis Fri 24-May-13 23:47:00

It is of course true that some things really are none of our business.

But - this forum would not exist without it.

See also - don't be so judgemental. Hilarious given half the threads on here!

Oh and Baby P was known to SS.

Not sure what joe bloggs could have done in that situation. So YABVVU to even bring it up.

pictish Fri 24-May-13 23:52:04

What SGB said with bells on.

AgentZigzag Fri 24-May-13 23:53:46

But then there are a lot of scroats out there who play on the fact that most people don't give a shit wannabe.

It's not always black and white, and sometimes you feel compelled to make it your business, even though it could be argued it isn't.

TooHotToFuss Fri 24-May-13 23:57:17

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Its not about giving a shit. Its about recognising that every individual has a right to a private life. Unless they are breaking the law it should stay private. And its not up to joe public to uphold the law. We have a system for just that.

WorraLiberty Sat 25-May-13 00:00:09

Totally agree with SGB

And to add to it...

Sometimes it's the tone/judginess of an OP that makes people say it's none of their business.

Not everyone is actually concerned...they just wrap judgement up to appear as though they are.

Bogeyface Sat 25-May-13 00:02:38

I posted about this a couple of days ago.
I reported a drunk driver who was so pissed he couldnt stand, he literally fell over. I was in a shop with 4 other people, the 2 shop staff helpe dhim up, served him and watched him drive away. I have given a statement and it turns out that I am the only person who reported him.

I am utterly disgusted that I was the only person who bothered to do anything. It could have been them or their kids that he killed, but no "someone else will do it". Well thank fuck I did! But if I hadnt been there then none of them would have done a thing and he would do it again and again.

TooHotToFuss Sat 25-May-13 00:09:13

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WorraLiberty Sat 25-May-13 00:10:56

You've heard them or you've read them on Mumsnet?

TooHotToFuss Sat 25-May-13 00:13:49

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OutragedFromLeeds Sat 25-May-13 00:14:03


There are some aspects of other people's lives that are our business.

A grubby child in the park, no. A neighbour whose kids are always grubby, grubbiness beyond 'some kids are grubby', yes.

'It's snowing heavily and my elderly neighbour probably can't get out. Should I go and knock and see if she's ok?'

Yes of course you should. Of course it's your business.

'No, because she might want to be left alone/have her own family/be getting an online shop delivered' is madness!

AgentZigzag Sat 25-May-13 00:15:35

Rightly or wrongly though wannabe, in the past few decades there's been an attempt to shift some of the boundaries between public and private.

DV is definitely seen as other peoples business nowadays, and what punishment is meted out to children is something to do with me.

Forums like MN I suppose can be quite important in that respect when they test out different scenarios to see how far those boundaries should intrude on people.

A neighbour with a black eye after you heard them rowing with their partner? 
An 'accident' or domestic abuse?

Unless the woman comes to you, its none of your business. If you witness it, its assault. Report it.

A parent swearing aggressively at their child?
They just lost it one time or this is a pattern of unacceptable behaviour. 

One time is not grounds for anything.

A man who had been drinking too much getting in a car with a child.

The child is irrelevant. He is breaking the law. Report.

You're part of a school community and you notice two brothers turning up everyday with grubby uniform, withdrawn and often inappropriate food for lunch. 

Raise your concerns with the appropriate CP staff member. But dont start a thread on mumsnet about it and add into your OP that the mum wears hoop earrings and smokes too much.

OutragedFromLeeds Sat 25-May-13 00:18:00

'And its not up to joe public to uphold the law. We have a system for just that.'

That's stupid. You see a child being assaulted by a parent and you say 'sorry, I can't help you I'm just a member of Joe public, there is a legal system that should help you'?! Come on!

what punishment is meted out to children is something to do with me.

No it isnt.

If abuse is suspected then call SS. But you cannot say that how others discipline their kids is your business because it isnt. No one parents the same.

OutragedFromLeeds Sat 25-May-13 00:21:15

If they're disciplining them with violence then that is abuse. One man's discipline is another man's abuse.

AgentZigzag Sat 25-May-13 00:21:24

It's those kinds of scenarios I'm thinking of Outraged, but when you're in them yourself and know all the millions of other bits of information that go with what's happening, it can be difficult to make the right call.

One bit of information can offset another, or maybe something you thought insignificant would be crucial to other people, asking on MN draws on an enormous pool of experience, much bigger than you'd have in RL.

usualsuspect Sat 25-May-13 00:23:30

It depend though.

Theres judgement on MN because people do things differently to you.

Who says your way is the right way?

AgentZigzag Sat 25-May-13 00:24:51

I presume the parents who physically assault their children, like punching them in the face with a clenched fist, are able to live with themselves and think that what they're doing isn't that bad wannabe, that is something to do with me.

If I suspected abuse then I'd call SS.

That would be making it something to do with me.

Theres a difference between having a duty to report, and it being your business.

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