Need I say more?
On top of the horrific conditions, that CAN'T be good for business either. I can't imagine little kids would be too stoked to see all the dead fish. (Cynical me says, I guess buying nothing means one less goldfish in a bowl...)
Looks like the pet shop I used to work in! Horrible!
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Yeah, when I was walking by and saw that, I just froze. When a girl walked up and asked if I needed help with anything, I gave her a look which, judging by how she stepped back really quickly, effectively conveyed my rage. Apparently with some shipments it "just happens", and it's not a big deal because the feeder tanks are on a separate filtration system from the rest of the stock. How very... apathetic.
I had a mini confrontation in a Meijer's today. I'm starting to be known. The manager was not too thrilled to see me again. I tend to have confrontations (conversations) in all the supermarkets I go to. And yes, I got the "new shipment" excuse too.
It is very hard to deal with people who are apathetic and who allow the animals under their care to suffer. At the same time, I have to watch myself and realize when I am projecting all of my own stress and anxiety on to someone else who has been having a reasonable day at work until I walked in. If that person has to hold in his or her feelings when dealing with me, that unexpressed frustration might get taken out on someone else.
It is something that happens to me sometimes when I talk to someone new, and they are angry for no reason. I get it set and feels stomped on before I understand that it is because they had a confrontation with someone else earlier.
I also now have realized, watching my daughter's friends, that some of these kids are getting psychologically abused when their parents are stressed out from things that happened at work and have nothing to do with their families.
So I've been working more on how I present a case for the animals, striving for a way that is more persuasive and less confrontational. I can't save everyone this way, of course, but I have found that it is also calming for me to be more aware.
When an animal is being abused, I'm confrontational. There's no excuse for it. But I hear you and know your frustration.
I am just becoming more and more aware of how I am part of the problem. I have been having long talks with hubby about how we interact with our daughter as a family. I am always the crusader, trying to save the world, and they are the ones who feel personally attacked. They are very sensitive individuals with selective mutism, and I see them withdrawing further. Disengaging is a self-defense mechanism that can look like apathy, laziness, insensitivity, dishonesty, and so on. I feel helpless, and so I get louder, trying to get them to help me fix everything away I always try and fail to do. But for them, they feel crushed, desperate, unable to speak for themselves, helpless. And by the time they do react, they end up screaming in distress, blindly lashing out. I never saw myself as an abusive person, and animal rescuers do not in general. That is not who I want to be. So here I am, learning how to be with my husband all over again after decades of being together.
The stress that my family is going through has so much to do with all of the stress that is going on around us. I have been stepping back further and looking at our overall social circle, seeing how everyone has been more and more affected since 2006. Definitely, the economic situation has been a major factor in the people around us falling apart, and what I see happening to their children. Our more educated friends with jobs are hanging on despite cutbacks, but they are in terrible shape emotionally and healthwise, mostly due to stress. There is a huge difference with people we know who have fallen below the poverty line into desperation. The neglected pets are sad enough, but I have walked away from several families due to the parents' out-of-control behavior. One family got so bad, I called the police and CPS, and I would have called la migra except that they are inundated. But these undocumented parents were not born monsters, they are merely people who are pushed way beyond their ability to cope.
Do i really know what is going on with these managers and LFS employees? They, too, have a lot of stress. They can never earn enough money and never have enough time. Maybe they started to work in a pet store because they love animals and relate better to them than to people. Pet stores can be a terrible work place for someone who loves animals. It is very likely that they have had insufficient training and have not had the opportunity to get much of an education. If they did finish school, perhaps they feel that they are in a dead-end job. Even if they did once care, perhaps now they are so stressed out that they feel so helpless and angry that they have started to dislike the animals. Do i know if they are feeling helpless? What happens inside of them after I leave from a confrontation?
Like many compulsive animal rescuers, I struggle to find peace and balance. And so I am now trying to work on myself by not pushing so hard in a way that only causes more tension and continues the cycle of abuse. I have to remember that I need these people to be better animal keepers and parents because there are not enough of us rescuers to take care of all of the pets and children. It would be better for there be a little less stress now before getting to the point of calling agencies that are overloaded.
Where we need a lot of noise and a lot of confrontations is actually on a bigger scale. We need peaceful demonstrations, phone calls, sit-ins, together to try to change things not just one fish at a time but the whole big picture. I myself have always lived by saving one dog, one fish, and one child at a time, but now I see that I was only feeding my own sense of despair about everything else, that I could not do more. I was wasting myself as a resource, increasing my frustration, and torturing my family.
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