Author Topic: Mother and Baby Home Report  (Read 3889 times)

Rudi

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #45 on: January 13, 2021, 04:48:06 PM »
Very sad what went on in these homes, industrial schools & laundries. Religious orders were bereft of empathy & basic humanity, the "fallen" in society were dehumanised to shocking levels of degradation. I have read a few books & watched a few films over the years on these type of places run by the religious orders & I am left with an enormous amount of sympathy for all the women, babies & children that perished at these horofic places. I believe in God, some of his alleged followers were some of the worst type of animal you can get.
Power can be an awful thing in the wrong hands & the fact that hardly anyone spoke up, gives you an idea of the control the church had at the time. Its probably to late to see any of the offenders get the rough justice they deserve, most are dead or at deaths door.
There was bound to be some heroic good ones who did their best to alleviate some of the pain, not all of them can be tarnished with the same brush.
i hope the mothers & children still left, live out the rest of their lives in the best possible happiness they can find.   

sid waddell

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #46 on: January 13, 2021, 04:58:01 PM »
Ireland was a sick, twisted place back then.

Like many societies where religion holds an outsize influence.

Most certainly was and can't even imagine what the rest of the world are thinking when they read this story about us. Ridiculous the power religion held on this island.

Britain had mother and baby homes too. And it hasn't been a religious country for at least a century.  I'm sure other countries had them too.
The ideology of Catholic conformity in this country was merely Victorian patriarchy repackaged - and yes I am aware of the irony of dubbing something named after a female monarch as patriarchy, but that's what it was

The rural, sparsely populated nature of Ireland as opposed to the industrial nature of Britain stifled ideas and stifled change

Britain's empire and its role in the war and the lessons that arose from that, and the population movements that arose from that, ironically also helped open it to new ideas that Ireland was not opened up to until later - Ireland never attracted immigrants in any sort of numbers until the 1990s, that prevented significant change until then, and emigration further stifled it

But Britain has always maintained a deeply conservative streak too, in some ways its opening up to new ideas may have deepened that conservative streak among the conservative - and that's something you also see in America






Orior

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #47 on: January 13, 2021, 05:12:53 PM »
Lots of tut-tutting and shaking of heads in disbelief. The whole sad affair will never be repeated, so I don't think there is any need for lessons learnt.

The foundation of Religion is built on fear so that a select few can control masses of people. However, there were (and still are) a lot of good priests and nuns who joined for the right reasons and devoted their lives to God and saving souls. They are also there when bad things happen and we need support. My point is let's not throw the.... well bad analogy.... but you know what I mean.
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sid waddell

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #48 on: January 13, 2021, 05:23:43 PM »
In 2005 Kevin Myers wrote an article in the Irish Times in which he continually referenced "mothers of bastards"

The Irish Times and Myers parted company soon afterwards, Myers moved to the Irish Independent

In some quarters, Myers was framed as a victim

But he wasn't

It is rather Orwellian how an ideology of vilification of people for having children out of wedlock - which for many years created real victims - has now itself claimed the clothes of the victim

Bord na Mona man

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #49 on: January 13, 2021, 05:29:09 PM »
What sort of society was it to produce such sadistic nuns?

whitey

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #50 on: January 13, 2021, 05:42:12 PM »
What sort of society was it to produce such sadistic nuns?

A lot of people were pushed into it .....very religious parents conned them into thinking they had a “vocation”-ie an imaginary person with super powers whispering you to do it

I know one family that had 6 daughters-5 became nuns (and then all subsequently quit)

Can you imagine the frustration and resentment that fostered in those young women. Quitting religious orders was yet another embarrassment for the family that was to be avoided at all cost
« Last Edit: January 13, 2021, 05:48:13 PM by whitey »

restorepride

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #51 on: January 13, 2021, 06:19:19 PM »
24 hours on and not a whimper on the Mother and Baby Home Report. Does the board reflect the misogyny of the era or are people too caught up in US politics and Covid? Report is a damning indictment of Ireland  and the society that evolved post “Independence”
Thanks for starting the discussion.  The 'misogyny' is still there, plain as day in the Catholic Church.  How women still support that Church is almost beyond me.  My mother turned her back on it, as have my five sisters and three brothers.   An insult to intelligence.

One point I would like to add is that "forced adoption" continued for a long time, right in to the 1980s in my home area.  Except now it was the laity of Marriage Encounter, for example, who were facilitating it - daughters from rural South Derry going for an 'extended stay' in Derry City or Belfast and coming home without the baby to whom they had given birth.  Back to school for the mother.  All because of the shame perpetuated by the Parish Priest.

Lar Naparka

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #52 on: January 13, 2021, 06:36:45 PM »
What sort of society was it to produce such sadistic nuns?

A lot of people were pushed into it .....very religious parents conned them into thinking they had a “vocation”-ie an imaginary person with super powers whispering you to do it

I know one family that had 6 daughters-5 became nuns (and then all subsequently quit)

Can you imagine the frustration and resentment that fostered in those young women. Quitting religious orders was yet another embarrassment for the family that was to be avoided at all cost
Yer dead right all the way…...
But many parents acted for practical reasons too. I had a teaching colleague once who was a headcase if I ever met one.
Seems his mother called him aside one day when he was fifteen or so and told him, “John is the oldest so he will get the farm. Michaely will be sent to university and you , me bucko, will be a christain brother. At least you'll get three square meals a day and a roof over your head.”
Yer man tried to protest but she shut him up. Yer bags are packed and the hackney car will be here in a half hour.”
So my mate wound up in the brothers and he hated being there. After a few years of pure hello, he finally decided to quit. His superiors treated him like a leper.
He was sent to his room to pray and make atonement for hios sins. When all others had retired for the night, he was summoned downstairs where his bags were packed , he got a train ticket to his hometown and was told never to darken the door again.
He was already a qualified primary teacher so he took up a teaching job and he completely overreacted when he was free of the brothers’ regime.
He told me most of the brothers had no religious vocations, it was either the brothers or the boat. Times were hard and parents were hard-headed.
I don't know a lot about nuns in general but from some I used to know I was told that not every girl wound up in convents because they wanted to be there. Either their parents forced them to join or some fella had let them down. In other words, genuine, holy Mary nuns were as scarce as hen’s teeth.
No wonder their nickname was mickey dodgers.
Bonking was always an Irish national pastime and as there was very little money floating about, the number of illegitimate kids had to be kept as low as possible. But since incest was also a national pastime, many innocent girls were raped by their fatheres or brothers or some near relative.
From what I was told, houses were small, often only two bedrooms, so the growing boys and girls had to share a small cramped room with only a blanket screen to separate the sexes and you know the rest….
Since out of wedlock births were considered occasions of sin and girls who got pregnant had to be kept out of sight so off to the nunnery in the Morris Minor was the only way to go
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Bord na Mona man

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #53 on: January 13, 2021, 06:46:04 PM »
What sort of society was it to produce such sadistic nuns?

A lot of people were pushed into it .....very religious parents conned them into thinking they had a “vocation”-ie an imaginary person with super powers whispering you to do it

I know one family that had 6 daughters-5 became nuns (and then all subsequently quit)

Can you imagine the frustration and resentment that fostered in those young women. Quitting religious orders was yet another embarrassment for the family that was to be avoided at all cost
Yes, I'd say many of them were dumped into the order.
I'd guess a lot of them were bitter spinster types who resented the 'fallen' ladies being desirable to opposite sex.


restorepride

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #54 on: January 13, 2021, 06:51:44 PM »
What sort of society was it to produce such sadistic nuns?

A lot of people were pushed into it .....very religious parents conned them into thinking they had a “vocation”-ie an imaginary person with super powers whispering you to do it

I know one family that had 6 daughters-5 became nuns (and then all subsequently quit)

Can you imagine the frustration and resentment that fostered in those young women. Quitting religious orders was yet another embarrassment for the family that was to be avoided at all cost
Yer dead right all the way…...
But many parents acted for practical reasons too. I had a teaching colleague once who was a headcase if I ever met one.
Seems his mother called him aside one day when he was fifteen or so and told him, “John is the oldest so he will get the farm. Michaely will be sent to university and you , me bucko, will be a christain brother. At least you'll get three square meals a day and a roof over your head.”
Yer man tried to protest but she shut him up. Yer bags are packed and the hackney car will be here in a half hour.”
So my mate wound up in the brothers and he hated being there. After a few years of pure hello, he finally decided to quit. His superiors treated him like a leper.
He was sent to his room to pray and make atonement for hios sins. When all others had retired for the night, he was summoned downstairs where his bags were packed , he got a train ticket to his hometown and was told never to darken the door again.
He was already a qualified primary teacher so he took up a teaching job and he completely overreacted when he was free of the brothers’ regime.
He told me most of the brothers had no religious vocations, it was either the brothers or the boat. Times were hard and parents were hard-headed.
I don't know a lot about nuns in general but from some I used to know I was told that not every girl wound up in convents because they wanted to be there. Either their parents forced them to join or some fella had let them down. In other words, genuine, holy Mary nuns were as scarce as hen’s teeth.
No wonder their nickname was mickey dodgers.
Bonking was always an Irish national pastime and as there was very little money floating about, the number of illegitimate kids had to be kept as low as possible. But since incest was also a national pastime, many innocent girls were raped by their fatheres or brothers or some near relative.
From what I was told, houses were small, often only two bedrooms, so the growing boys and girls had to share a small cramped room with only a blanket screen to separate the sexes and you know the rest….
Since out of wedlock births were considered occasions of sin and girls who got pregnant had to be kept out of sight so off to the nunnery in the Morris Minor was the only way to go
Some families did not bend to the tune of Catholic Church and supported their daughters by raising the new arrival as a late child, not a grandchild.   Some families had much more integrity than the Bishops.

A National Pastime?  Not the description I would choose.

Main Street

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #55 on: January 13, 2021, 07:46:06 PM »
It all feels a bit too rushed to me,  in a bid to get the whole sordid saga, signed sealed and delivered as a finished package, all in a few days after a wait of 5 years.
Every witness record is equally important yet some statements were altered afterwards, radically changing the import of the witnesses' statement.

Not to diminish the high infant mortality rates recorded (40%) inside these homes in the  1930's 1940's,  but it's a meaningless exercise to compare those figures to the national average.  It would be of more value to be compared to those figures  in the lowest strata of Irish society in the notorious city centre slums of Dublin, Cork  and Limerick.

 I'll only be able to manage a read of the 75 page summary later .

seafoid

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #56 on: January 13, 2021, 08:09:32 PM »
Home Rule is Rome Rule. Unbelievable how true that turned out to be.
It was fairly predictable in the run up to independence.
Once the religious lost power the economy overtook NI.
Now there's no comparison.

The contrast between the romance of independence and the grubby reality is covered in the book Woodbrook by David Thomson.
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/3263899-woodbrook
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Lar Naparka

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #57 on: January 13, 2021, 09:08:52 PM »
What sort of society was it to produce such sadistic nuns?

A lot of people were pushed into it .....very religious parents conned them into thinking they had a “vocation”-ie an imaginary person with super powers whispering you to do it

I know one family that had 6 daughters-5 became nuns (and then all subsequently quit)

Can you imagine the frustration and resentment that fostered in those young women. Quitting religious orders was yet another embarrassment for the family that was to be avoided at all cost
Yer dead right all the way…...
But many parents acted for practical reasons too. I had a teaching colleague once who was a headcase if I ever met one.
Seems his mother called him aside one day when he was fifteen or so and told him, “John is the oldest so he will get the farm. Michaely will be sent to university and you , me bucko, will be a christain brother. At least you'll get three square meals a day and a roof over your head.”
Yer man tried to protest but she shut him up. Yer bags are packed and the hackney car will be here in a half hour.”
So my mate wound up in the brothers and he hated being there. After a few years of pure hello, he finally decided to quit. His superiors treated him like a leper.
He was sent to his room to pray and make atonement for hios sins. When all others had retired for the night, he was summoned downstairs where his bags were packed , he got a train ticket to his hometown and was told never to darken the door again.
He was already a qualified primary teacher so he took up a teaching job and he completely overreacted when he was free of the brothers’ regime.
He told me most of the brothers had no religious vocations, it was either the brothers or the boat. Times were hard and parents were hard-headed.
I don't know a lot about nuns in general but from some I used to know I was told that not every girl wound up in convents because they wanted to be there. Either their parents forced them to join or some fella had let them down. In other words, genuine, holy Mary nuns were as scarce as hen’s teeth.
No wonder their nickname was mickey dodgers.
Bonking was always an Irish national pastime and as there was very little money floating about, the number of illegitimate kids had to be kept as low as possible. But since incest was also a national pastime, many innocent girls were raped by their fatheres or brothers or some near relative.
From what I was told, houses were small, often only two bedrooms, so the growing boys and girls had to share a small cramped room with only a blanket screen to separate the sexes and you know the rest….
Since out of wedlock births were considered occasions of sin and girls who got pregnant had to be kept out of sight so off to the nunnery in the Morris Minor was the only way to go
Some families did not bend to the tune of Catholic Church and supported their daughters by raising the new arrival as a late child, not a grandchild.   Some families had much more integrity than the Bishops.

A National Pastime?  Not the description I would choose.
I understand what you ar saying but the truth needs to be told. I had a number of uncles ho were born around the turn of the century  and at different times I discussed their growing up experiences with each of them.
There was a remarkable unanimity of opinion when it came to illegitimate births and the sexual practices of their times. Maybe covert sexual practices would describe the experiences more accurately. My father in law was a younger man but his account of growing up in rural Cavan was very similar.
There was absolutely no sex education of any sort. The subject was taboo so children had to try and understand their growling sexual feelings  without any clear instruction on what was happening to their bodies and minds.
Bear in mind that the number of pregnant girls who were pushed into Mother and Baby homes do not reflect the actual number of out of wedlock pregnancies.
Probably as many more were shipped doff to England. Liverpool in particular seemed the place the greatest number were sent to.
Others simply had abortions whether they liked it or not.
The stats just released are horrifying but they don't tell the full story- not by a long shot.
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Snapchap

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #58 on: January 13, 2021, 09:17:18 PM »
What sort of society was it to produce such sadistic nuns?

The same sort of society that today tolerates Direct Provision.

Rossfan

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Re: Mother and Baby Home Report
« Reply #59 on: January 13, 2021, 09:21:07 PM »
Home Rule is Rome Rule. Unbelievable how true that turned out to be.


The contrast between the romance of independence and the grubby reality is covered in the book Woodbrook by David Thomson.
https://www.goodreads.com/book/show/3263899-woodbrook
Not a million miles to the North of me. A relation of mine was mentioned in it.
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