That's Good Living! Magazine. "I Punch My Child Every Day Because I Love Him".

You talk to any parent and they will tell you bout the “terrible twos” but no matter how many times I heard or read about it, I never thought it would happen to our gorgeous boy Josh. How very wrong we were.

Josh was always a happy and bouncy baby who never seemed to cry, slept through the night and fed regularly. My husband Stefan and I thought we had the perfect child but how very wrong we were…

It all started on his second birthday. Completely out of the blue he threw his toy car straight through the screen of our 50" flat screen plasma HD ready Sony T.V. “Bad boy!” Stefan scolded him so Josh punched him in the face with the sharp edge of an old teething rattle. “Go to bed!” I ordered, reluctantly he went to his room, smashing up everything he could find en route. “What are we going to do with him?” I asked Stefan close to tears. “Don’t worry honey, it’s just a faze he is going through” I reluctantly agreed with him. How very wrong we were…..

Days turned into weeks, weeks turned into months, months turned into years but aged seven years old, Josh’s behavior had got steadily worse. His father and I had to wear home made armour around the house (colanders, bin lids, bubble wrap) to protect ourselves from the missiles and coshes Josh had collected, whilst all the while his weapons were getting more and more creative. Sharpened pencils, poison tipped cotton buds, powdered glass, bleach in the milk bottles – we were constantly kept on our toes. We thought we could cope and adapt with the situation but how very wrong we were.

It was a Sunday morning, we had just got back from church and I had left the turkey and vegetables for lunch to slow cook whilst we were out. It was about quarter past eleven and I was in the back garden putting the washing out on the line. There was a lot of washing that week as Josh had poured eight litres of paint into all the drawers in our bedroom containing our clothes and passports etc. I was only out there for about half an hour, I had no reason to think that in that half an hour our lives would change for ever but how very wrong I was.

I walked in through the back door and straight into the kitchen and found on the floor Stefan with a roasting hot turkey over his head, carrots and parsnips coming out of his ears, his trousers pulled down with what looked like the last quarter of a giant Yorkshire pudding protruding from bottom. He was not moving. I screamed and thought he was dead, gone for ever but how very wrong I was.

Once doctors had fully evaluated Stefan, they calculated, according to his body weight, he was over sixty four per cent roast dinner, or as the doctor put it: “More dinner than man”. It turned out that the hot fat of the turkey had effectively welded itself to Stefan’s head and neck, he also had eleven carrots all cut into strips inserted into his left ear and six whole honey glazed parsnips into his right. Up his bottom doctors had found four giant Yorkshire puddings that having eventually soaked up enough anal moisture to go soft and drop out of their own accord. Down his throat and in his windpipe was an entire savoy cabbage, some black pepper and a quarter pound of butter. Hot gravy, evidence of which was beneath the turkey, had been poured into his nose left him with third degree burns to his nostrils and according to the doctors, enough gravy in his lungs to drown three men. How very wrong they were.

After seven months in hospital and thirty eight long operations, the food was all removed from Stefan’s body and having spent another year battling M.R.S.A, a flesh eating bug and a broken back falling out of bed he was back home and we were a family again. But we thought we were out of ideas with what to do with Josh, that there was nothing we could do, but we read about an American child psychologist who would have undoubtedly told us how very wrong we were.

Dr Elvin MacDaddy suggested that by administering punches to Joshua every day we would remind him of the frailty and vulnerability of the human condition and how it applies to him as well as others around him. It also gives him a taster of what he can expect more of if he “rocks the boat”. So now he has punch after breakfast, a punch just before lunch and punch during his dinner, some days we have to punch him more than others but I count my blessings every day that Stefan is still here with me to help me punch our child together. We thought we were beyond help; but how very wrong we were.

As told my Alicia Gussett to Matt Upchuck September 2010

That's Good Living! Magazine. "I Punch My Child Every Day Because I Love Him".


Brighton, United Kingdom

  • Artist

Artist's Description

A satirical take on any of the hundreds of women’s magazines full of depressing, tragic and revolting tales of the “life experiences” of idiots.

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