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CaliKid
09-16-2007, 05:39 AM
On Thursday, we learned that the PJ has Kate's diary and she supposedly describes having a difficult time with her children, claiming they are "hysterical" and commenting on Madeleine as a child whose excessive activity consumes her strength.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/worldnews.html?in_article_id=481645&in_page_id=1811&ito=newsnow

http://www.websleuths.com/forums/showpost.php?p=1677605&postcount=59

However, this does not correlate with the following information about the children from their father, Gerry.

http://www.websleuths.com/forums/showpost.php?p=1650415&postcount=71

Here he was discussing the way the twins slept so deeply the night that Madeleine disappeared- both he and his wife think it’s “normal” that their twin children kept sleeping on the night of the crime.

I believe these two statements are mutually exclusive of each other. For children to sleep that deeply means that Kate would probably get a lot of rest once they were in bed (apparently very early at night) and wouldn't feel so exhausted. Likewise, hyper children normally have a difficult time going to sleep at night, and the McCanns don't seem to have had any problems with theirs (according to them).

englishleigh
09-16-2007, 04:00 PM
On Thursday, we learned that the PJ has Kate's diary and she supposedly describes having a difficult time with her children, claiming they are "hysterical" and commenting on Madeleine as a child whose excessive activity consumes her strength.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/pages/live/articles/news/worldnews.html?in_article_id=481645&in_page_id=1811&ito=newsnow

http://www.websleuths.com/forums/showpost.php?p=1677605&postcount=59

However, this does not correlate with the following information about the children from their father, Gerry.

http://www.websleuths.com/forums/showpost.php?p=1650415&postcount=71

Here he was discussing the way the twins slept so deeply the night that Madeleine disappeared- both he and his wife think it’s “normal” that their twin children kept sleeping on the night of the crime.

I believe these two statements are mutually exclusive of each other. For children to sleep that deeply means that Kate would probably get a lot of rest once they were in bed (apparently very early at night) and wouldn't feel so exhausted. Likewise, hyper children normally have a difficult time going to sleep at night, and the McCanns don't seem to have had any problems with theirs (according to them).

Very good points, CaliKid!!

ThoughtFox
09-16-2007, 11:54 PM
I'm so glad you started a thread about this, because it has been bothering me! :clap: I think you've identified a major problem in the parent's story.

Plus, we know now that the kids weren't with Kate all day every day, but were in daycare of some kind, so is she saying she didn't want them around at other times? Wouldn't she expect them to want attention after being away from her all day?

If the Twins slept soundly, but Madeline was more awake all the time because she was older and just more active (some children are just like that!), wouldn't that make a good motive for them drugging her to get her to sleep with the Twins? It's starting to sound that way to me.

I also have quite a bit of trouble when any parent says that their very young children are "hysterical." All young children have at least one little tantrum a day, and while we all get tired of dealing with that, it's a phase they go through while they test the limits, and after all they don't have control of their emotions. So while I agree that it is normal for any mother to be overwhelmed with three young kids, Kate seems to have had time away from them. What she seemed to resent is that her husband had "more" time away than she did, and that bothers me.

These kids were very close in age, and having Twins in addition to Maddie must have been quite a burden for anyone. But once you start believing that crying or arguing from a four-year-old is "hysteria," you can start to believe almost anything, and I just wonder if people might have had some depression going on.

Salem
09-17-2007, 12:10 AM
I'm so glad you started a thread about this, because it has been bothering me! :clap: I think you've identified a major problem in the parent's story.

I also have quite a bit of trouble when any parent says that their very young children are "hysterical." All young children have at least one little tantrum a day, and while we all get tired of dealing with that, it's a phase they go through while they test the limits, and after all they don't have control of their emotions.

ThoughtFox - I shortened your post for the sake of space. I hope you don't mind.

Cali - I think this is a very good line of questioning. I mean, you can't have it both ways. Either the children were hyper or they were good sleepers (which, generally, means a calmer type child).

I do have to say this though because I've been thinking about it since they published the "excerpt" from KM's diary. Hysterical does not necessarily mean hard to handle or out of control.

We (my family) call our grandkids hysterical all the time. To us, it means they "crack us up," make us laugh our heads off. It means they were being funny or they did something that was just too cute.

In the case of Maddie and all the regurgitation of "facts" it could very well mean that KM's comment was published completely out of context.

Now, let me clarify. I am not a fence sitter. I believe the parents are responsible for Maddie's disappearance for many, many different reasons. However, if this case has taught me anything, it is to be very leary of anything I read in the press and especially anything coming from the British media.

I agree with several other posters that public opinion is being manipulated by the media and by PLE. I think PLE leaks things on purpose, some of which is true and some of which is not. And I am very disappointed to hear that Sousa of the PLE is no longer the spokesperson for the case, because I had just about figured him out. He never said what he meant:D

Salem

txsvicki
09-17-2007, 12:18 AM
I'm wondering if hysteria might be a very accurate word to use for some reason. I'd think a doctor wouldn't be exaggerating words to describe symptoms or actions since they are so used to being factual. Maybe there is some reason that the children were horribly upset.

CaliKid
09-17-2007, 12:32 AM
I've also seen the word hyperactive substituted for hysterical.

To me, just like with Salem, hysterical means crack-up funny, which is a good thing for children to be when they're relaxing with their family. I don't think this is what Kate meant.

ThoughtFox
09-17-2007, 01:25 AM
Salem: I totally understand your point about the meaning of "hysterical." And I would love it if you were right.

I'll grant that maybe Kate was writing about her day when she was still upset about something Maddie did, or maybe she was just tired or angry at her husband because he got to go off and play golf, while she stayed behind. We've all been there, done that as mothers.

If I ever thought of my kids as "hysterical," though, it was in the context of crying, throwing themselves on the floor, shouting, or arguing. I don't find that to be unusual behavior for 2- or 4- year-olds. In fact, most people would probably call that normal behavior sometimes.

Here's the thing - one of those articles mentions discipline. Some parents expect way too much maturity from toddlers, and I see that all the time. They expect them never to interrupt, make a mess, cry, argue, or get their clothes dirty. Alot of parents make a battle out of everything because their expectations of perfection are too high, and it's not always the kid's fault.

I admit to being a more laid-back parent than that, but I picked my battles. I might not mind a child staying up a little later to watch a cartoon, but I would make them brush their teeth even if they didn't want to. I also used to make my kids stay in bed, but I'd allow them to stay awake and play or look at a book a little while if it helped them go to sleep.

I don't know - that's not the vibe I'm getting from these folks.

Bedtime is a major battleground for parents from ages 0 to 17. We know the McCanns wanted the kids to sleep through dinner nearly every night so they could leave them alone.

Those of us with kids know that small children are not always that consistant, nor are they willing to go right to bed. Gosh - I was with a group of women last night and we were talking about all the little things kids expect at bedtime, from pacifiers to blankets to stories to music. I just do not hear any of that normal stuff in this case except for the cuddle cat toy.

Bottom line for me is whether bedtime was an issue, especially if Kate was tired of dealing with the kids as her diary allegedly says? Did they resort to drugging the kids because it was just expedient so they could go on to dinner? I hate thinking about this by the way - it's so heartbreaking.

Shazza
09-17-2007, 02:06 AM
Salem: I totally understand your point about the meaning of "hysterical." And I would love it if you were right.

I'll grant that maybe Kate was writing about her day when she was still upset about something Maddie did, or maybe she was just tired or angry at her husband because he got to go off and play golf, while she stayed behind. We've all been there, done that as mothers.

If I ever thought of my kids as "hysterical," though, it was in the context of crying, throwing themselves on the floor, shouting, or arguing. I don't find that to be unusual behavior for 2- or 4- year-olds. In fact, most people would probably call that normal behavior sometimes.

Here's the thing - one of those articles mentions discipline. Some parents expect way too much maturity from toddlers, and I see that all the time. They expect them never to interrupt, make a mess, cry, argue, or get their clothes dirty. Alot of parents make a battle out of everything because their expectations of perfection are too high, and it's not always the kid's fault.

I admit to being a more laid-back parent than that, but I picked my battles. I might not mind a child staying up a little later to watch a cartoon, but I would make them brush their teeth even if they didn't want to. I also used to make my kids stay in bed, but I'd allow them to stay awake and play or look at a book a little while if it helped them go to sleep.

I don't know - that's not the vibe I'm getting from these folks.

Bedtime is a major battleground for parents from ages 0 to 17. We know the McCanns wanted the kids to sleep through dinner nearly every night so they could leave them alone.

Those of us with kids know that small children are not always that consistant, nor are they willing to go right to bed. Gosh - I was with a group of women last night and we were talking about all the little things kids expect at bedtime, from pacifiers to blankets to stories to music. I just do not hear any of that normal stuff in this case except for the cuddle cat toy.

Bottom line for me is whether bedtime was an issue, especially if Kate was tired of dealing with the kids as her diary allegedly says? Did they resort to drugging the kids because it was just expedient so they could go on to dinner? I hate thinking about this by the way - it's so heartbreaking.
It is very heartbreaking ThoughtFox, what I dont understand is how could Kate be sick of dealing with her children if they were in creche for the most part of everyday, the parents had a lot of me time but not a lot of kid time.

CaliKid
09-17-2007, 03:44 AM
I wish the PJ could get some of the twins' hair if they don't already have it and test it for sedatives. From what one of the relatives hinted and the trouble KM expressed to having with the children, I'd bet they were sedated a lot, not just in Portugal.

narlacat
09-17-2007, 04:57 AM
I'm so glad you started a thread about this, because it has been bothering me! :clap: I think you've identified a major problem in the parent's story.

Plus, we know now that the kids weren't with Kate all day every day, but were in daycare of some kind, so is she saying she didn't want them around at other times? Wouldn't she expect them to want attention after being away from her all day?

If the Twins slept soundly, but Madeline was more awake all the time because she was older and just more active (some children are just like that!), wouldn't that make a good motive for them drugging her to get her to sleep with the Twins? It's starting to sound that way to me.

I also have quite a bit of trouble when any parent says that their very young children are "hysterical." All young children have at least one little tantrum a day, and while we all get tired of dealing with that, it's a phase they go through while they test the limits, and after all they don't have control of their emotions. So while I agree that it is normal for any mother to be overwhelmed with three young kids, Kate seems to have had time away from them. What she seemed to resent is that her husband had "more" time away than she did, and that bothers me.

These kids were very close in age, and having Twins in addition to Maddie must have been quite a burden for anyone. But once you start believing that crying or arguing from a four-year-old is "hysteria," you can start to believe almost anything, and I just wonder if people might have had some depression going on.

We don't all use the same words to describe things- that's why there's so many words!

Shazza
09-17-2007, 05:47 AM
I wish the PJ could get some of the twins' hair if they don't already have it and test it for sedatives. From what one of the relatives hinted and the trouble KM expressed to having with the children, I'd bet they were sedated a lot, not just in Portugal.
That wouldnt suprise me Calikid, I would love to know what information has been passed onto the prosecution, maybe they have done DNA on the twins.

iNTERESTEDWOMAN
09-17-2007, 09:10 AM
I wish the PJ could get some of the twins' hair if they don't already have it and test it for sedatives. From what one of the relatives hinted and the trouble KM expressed to having with the children, I'd bet they were sedated a lot, not just in Portugal.

Every video clip I have personally seen of the twins, they have appeared lethargic and sedated. But them again maybe they where just sleepy.

englishleigh
09-17-2007, 09:12 AM
I'm wondering if hysteria might be a very accurate word to use for some reason. I'd think a doctor wouldn't be exaggerating words to describe symptoms or actions since they are so used to being factual. Maybe there is some reason that the children were horribly upset.

I'd have been hysterical, too, if I was 3 or 4 and my parents left me all alone, especially in a strange place.

But if we're talking about in general life at home in Leicestershire, there may have been other reasons why Madeleine was hysterical, as Vicki says. I have a lot of questions about their home life and the parenting Madeleine received. As many people have pointed out, Madeleine didn't look like a happy-go-lucky child in many of her photos.

hcc2007
09-17-2007, 12:35 PM
ThoughtFox - I shortened your post for the sake of space. I hope you don't mind.

Cali - I think this is a very good line of questioning. I mean, you can't have it both ways. Either the children were hyper or they were good sleepers (which, generally, means a calmer type child).
Salem

I'd have to disagree with you there. The ones who burn themselves out with activity while awake often sleep extremely well once they are asleep. When my daughter was young, she was hyperactive and very difficult to get to sleep. But once asleep, she slept through anything.

It became a minor family joke that she never quite managed to stay awake for the 4th-of-July fireworks display. There we were, all set up on our blanket, with her running, jumping, shaking, shrieking with excitement and anticipation. But invariably she would collapse and pass out 'cold' just minutes before the show started. So there we were with booms and crackles ricocheting off buildings all around us, rattling windows and forcing me to stuff my fingers in my ears, while our little darling slept sweetly ... not even a twitch. I think she was 6 or 7 before she actually saw a show.

That said, I still think it quite likely that they sedated her, I think it's beastly that the parents would rather go out and drink at night after the poor children had already spent the day in child care and deservedly wanted time with mommy and daddy. AND I think the word "hysterical" is strange and revealing, for the same reasons others have stated. Unless British usage is different from American and I'm missing something .... in American usage, "hysterical" implies that the emotion is inappropriate or exaggerated, or unjustified. And thus not a word you would use to describe a toddler's normal range of emotional behavior.
JMO

SleuthMom
09-17-2007, 01:03 PM
She was taking care of three small children (3 and under) that's a lot of stress and I am sure she thought and meant they were "hysterical" because at that age they are very hyperactive.

Now what surprises me is the fact that I read that she always wanted a "large" family...well....taking care of small kids are PART of it, not just looking nice in a family pic. As a mom of two kids (3 on its way) and possibly having many more in the future, I think she may have not taken into consideration the amount of work that really involves in having a "large" family. The choices she made that night, clearly shows she was not ready to accept "the call".

Texana
09-17-2007, 11:19 PM
She was taking care of three small children (3 and under) that's a lot of stress and I am sure she thought and meant they were "hysterical" because at that age they are very hyperactive.

Now what surprises me is the fact that I read that she always wanted a "large" family...well....taking care of small kids are PART of it, not just looking nice in a family pic. As a mom of two kids (3 on its way) and possibly having many more in the future, I think she may have not taken into consideration the amount of work that really involves in having a "large" family. The choices she made that night, clearly shows she was not ready to accept "the call".

Agreed, SleuthMom. I think Kate was a high achieving, bright, and disciplined individual who had clear expectations and goals for her life. So clear, perhaps, that she had trouble dealing with the reality of attaining those goals.

meowy
09-18-2007, 02:34 AM
Ooohh... I thought it meant hysterical as in incredibly funny, humorous.

luvbeaches
09-18-2007, 05:49 PM
Maybe Kate just couldn't deal with the kids. Just because she's a doctor doesn't necessarily make her a good parent (or one with great coping skills). And I keep hearing that they'd never do anything like they are being accused of doing because they so desperately wanted the children (and had the in-vitro, or whatever they did), but yet they also sedated their children and left them alone in a hotel room. So that's quite a contradiction right there. Even if it's the norm to leave your children alone (in that part of the world), what's the sedation about?

I have one friend who is very well-educated, but she simply can't deal with her children. She's completely overwhelmed with everything they do or don't do. When she complains to me, it's hard not to want to shake her and tell her to snap out of it. Kids are kids.

To me, Kate sounds like she's the one that's hysterical. We tend to think that because they are doctors, that they somehow can't be "bad parents" or have a dark side. But anyone who "sedates" a child and leaves their children alone in an unfamiliar environment (or familiar), has something going on. Either they are just stupid when it comes to the kids' well-being, or they've got something else going on.

BethInAK
09-18-2007, 08:47 PM
Maybe Kate just couldn't deal with the kids. Just because she's a doctor doesn't necessarily make her a good parent (or one with great coping skills). And I keep hearing that they'd never do anything like they are being accused of doing because they so desperately wanted the children (and had the in-vitro, or whatever they did), but yet they also sedated their children and left them alone in a hotel room. So that's quite a contradiction right there. Even if it's the norm to leave your children alone (in that part of the world), what's the sedation about?

Even without sedation, I think its clear that Kate and Gerry must be somewhat selfish and narcissistic to take this vacation and use the children as occasional fashion accessories as opposed to having a family vacation. The leaving the children in the room alone also indicates selfishness- their dinner with their peers was more important than the safety and COMFORT of the kids. Because even the best sleeper wakes up with a bad dream now and then.

luvbeaches
09-18-2007, 08:48 PM
Because even the best sleeper wakes up with a bad dream now and then.

Yes, they do. It boggles my mind that they left those children alone.

kiltubrid
09-18-2007, 09:24 PM
It is very heartbreaking ThoughtFox, what I dont understand is how could Kate be sick of dealing with her children if they were in creche for the most part of everyday, the parents had a lot of me time but not a lot of kid time.

She still would have been involved in daily routines such as getting the children up and dressed, getting them to eat at mealtimes, giving them baths and putting them to bed. Those times can be the most trying times of all for parents, even when both parents are involved and the kids are generally well-behaved. They are all favorite battle and meltdown times for kids.

Add to that equation being in a strange place, a father who sounds like more of a playmate for his children than a help-mate to his wife, a child with behavior problems, and three children under the age of four, and I get exhausted just thinking about it. I can understand how Kate must have felt very frustrated, especially if she thought of this time as her vacation, too.

I recently read an article that that talked about what a great father Gerry was and gave as an example that on the evening of May 3, while Kate fed the twins in the restaurant, he had Maddie nearby on the beach, playing with her, and she was laughing and shrieking "Daddy! Daddy! Daddy!" Anyone with children knows the worst thing you can do with a child right before bed is to rile her up with a lot of horseplay. A good and responsible father would have taken her back to the hotel, given her a bath, and read her a few stories to settle her down, giving her some quality one-on-one time.

If Kate did lash out at Maddie at bedtime (and I know that's a big if at this point), she might have actually been more frustrated with Gerry and sick of the situation in general, and simply took it out on Maddie when the child refused to settle down.

I may be in the minority here, but I do think it's possible for a good mother to snap.

BethInAK
09-18-2007, 09:28 PM
I may be in the minority here, but I do think it's possible for a good mother to snap.


You aren't in the minority. I have mornings where wrestling a toddler into his shoes is incredibly friustrating. On two occasions I have lost my temper and yelled much more loudly than necessary.

I think I'm a pretty good mom, except for the occasional screw up like that. Makes you feel just awful as soon as you yell too.

CaliKid
09-19-2007, 12:02 AM
If Kate did lash out at Maddie at bedtime (and I know that's a big if at this point), she might have actually been more frustrated with Gerry and sick of the situation in general, and simply took it out on Maddie when the child refused to settle down.

According to a therapist I once knew, it's known as the "kick the dog" syndrome. Most families have pecking orders and for some parents it's so much easier to lash out at the defenseless kids than your spouse.

ThoughtFox
09-19-2007, 09:13 AM
She still would have been involved in daily routines such as getting the children up and dressed, getting them to eat at mealtimes, giving them baths and putting them to bed. Those times can be the most trying times of all for parents, even when both parents are involved and the kids are generally well-behaved. They are all favorite battle and meltdown times for kids.
That's a good point, but let's face it - she is dealing with three kids who are all under 4 years old, and she had no nanny or relative to spell her off from it. Anyone would be overwhelmed by it, so I sympathize (I have three kids).

Having said that, I must also add that resenting kids because they have to be fed, bathed, and cared for at night is not normal. That's what parents have to do, and you just accept it if you are mature enough to be a parent.


Add to that equation being in a strange place, a father who sounds like more of a playmate for his children than a help-mate to his wife, a child with behavior problems, and three children under the age of four, and I get exhausted just thinking about it. I can understand how Kate must have felt very frustrated, especially if she thought of this time as her vacation, too.
Then they shouldn't have taken a "family vacation."


I recently read an article that that talked about what a great father Gerry was and gave as an example that on the evening of May 3, while Kate fed the twins in the restaurant, he had Maddie nearby on the beach, playing with her, and she was laughing and shrieking "Daddy! Daddy! Daddy!" Anyone with children knows the worst thing you can do with a child right before bed is to rile her up with a lot of horseplay. A good and responsible father would have taken her back to the hotel, given her a bath, and read her a few stories to settle her down, giving her some quality one-on-one time.
It sounds to many of us as if they just wanted the kids out of the way, instead of having that quality time.



I may be in the minority here, but I do think it's possible for a good mother to snap.
I don't think that is a minority view at all. In fact, I would say every mother snaps sometimes, but that could be ominous for Kate that people understand that even an angelic-appearing mother can have another side.

Texana
09-19-2007, 10:29 AM
That's a good point, but let's face it - she is dealing with three kids who are all under 4 years old, and she had no nanny or relative to spell her off from it. Anyone would be overwhelmed by it, so I sympathize (I have three kids).

Having said that, I must also add that resenting kids because they have to be fed, bathed, and cared for at night is not normal. That's what parents have to do, and you just accept it if you are mature enough to be a parent.




Agreed.

kiltubrid
09-19-2007, 06:50 PM
Having said that, I must also add that resenting kids because they have to be fed, bathed, and cared for at night is not normal. That's what parents have to do, and you just accept it if you are mature enough to be a parent.

Agreed. But what I was trying to say is that I'm not so sure she resented the kids as much as she may have resented the fact that her husband was no help.

I know many women in this situation who silently stew for long periods of time, and then just erupt. The dads typically think they're very good fathers because they play with the kids for a half-hour a few times a week but when there's real work to do, they check out. Many of them believe that they put in an 8-hour day at work (and a doctor is likely putting in even more time) and they deserve to relax when they're at home.

This sort of dynamic could really come to a head during a vacation, when Kate might reasonably have been expecting her husband to take on more responsibility with the children, since he didn't have the "have to go to work" excuse.

Edwards20
09-19-2007, 09:10 PM
My child is a deep sleeper and could sleep through a tornado. She is not hyperactive. So, I don't think you could judge all children's personalities based on their sleeping habits.

As I was reading this post, I kept wondering how Kate could feel so overwhelmed with the children (if this is the case), yet have time to write a diary. I only have one child and ME time is not that often.

How long were they actual on this "holiday"/family vacation before this happened ? Not that long, right ? So do we think she could not handle them for just this short time and then snapped ?

Help me out here. I thought they had a Nanny but left her at home for this trip. If that is the case, then perhaps Kate NEVER had to deal with baths, and getting the girls to bed, etc.

So do we think the particular duties with this trip overwhelmed her ? Or did she EVER care for them at home ?

... just some random thoughts I had while reading this thread.

BethInAK
09-19-2007, 09:22 PM
Agreed. But what I was trying to say is that I'm not so sure she resented the kids as much as she may have resented the fact that her husband was no help.

do we know gerry was a lazy-ass while Kate did all the childrearing and household stuff? I thought I remembered that the McCanns spoke of a nanny at home.

southcitymom
09-19-2007, 09:47 PM
....I also have quite a bit of trouble when any parent says that their very young children are "hysterical." All young children have at least one little tantrum a day, and while we all get tired of dealing with that, it's a phase they go through while they test the limits, and after all they don't have control of their emotions. So while I agree that it is normal for any mother to be overwhelmed with three young kids, Kate seems to have had time away from them. What she seemed to resent is that her husband had "more" time away than she did, and that bothers me.

These kids were very close in age, and having Twins in addition to Maddie must have been quite a burden for anyone. But once you start believing that crying or arguing from a four-year-old is "hysteria," you can start to believe almost anything, and I just wonder if people might have had some depression going on.

I haven't read much of this thread yet, but - as someone who keeps journals - you would find entries in mine describing my kids negatively and bemoaning the fact that my life had changed post-children so much more than my husband's had! Additionally, there are plenty of times when I have seen 4-year-olds in hysteria - call it a tantrum or whatever you want - but it's still hysteria.

Journals are where you pour your feelings - and I couldn't begin to condemn a mother of 3 children for what she wrote in hers. Unless these journals contain detailed descriptions of a plot to kill and hide her daughter, I suspect they are just one more red herring. They'll give us plenty ot talk about, but they are not a real clue as to who's got this little girl.

southcitymom
09-19-2007, 09:49 PM
....Cali - I think this is a very good line of questioning. I mean, you can't have it both ways. Either the children were hyper or they were good sleepers (which, generally, means a calmer type child).



Well I did and still do. My boys are bouncing off the walls when awake, but go to sleep well and sleep like rocks when asleep!

Texana
09-21-2007, 10:45 PM
do we know gerry was a lazy-ass while Kate did all the childrearing and household stuff? I thought I remembered that the McCanns spoke of a nanny at home.

Yes, they did have a nanny. It's a fact not mentioned often.