When do we stop mourning the death of Teoh Beng Hock

For some strange reasons, I didn’t shed tears for Teoh Beng Hock. Kugan’s death made me cried. But Beng Hock’s death, I didn’t. Why? Because I feel jaded. I felt more anger, frustration, disillusion, confusion than sadness. Moreover, there is this feeling of ‘oh, everyone is already doing it’.

Frankly speaking, I find the over dramatic events after the death of Beng Hock a bit over the top and repulsive. I had been through the death of my own son. I was there to comfort my relative when her perfectly fine, wonderful daughter committed suicide in UPM. I have been in communication with a lot of mothers who lost their grown children. (to a bereaved mother, the age doesn’t go with the amount of grief, we feel just as bad) I know we will go through the same cycle of denial, disbelief, anger, looking for things and people to blame, self blame and many more before we finally come to the admission that ‘Yeah, our child is dead’. Then, the real pain sets in. And we have to go through that somehow. Some recover, some became a bit disorientated. Some never overcome it. Some become dependent on medication for the mental problems.

I hate that I am not able to share the pain with Beng Hock’s mother. I feel helpless that I am not able to be there to whisper some things into the fiancee’s ear. I know I have the most level headed mind and I have the right words to whisper with them. Things that only we women to women can understand.

The crazy idea did cross my mind. I could easily asked LKS or LGE to arrange and I could easily travel to their home. You know why? Because I personally think we are all not doing any service to the family. I hate reading news like, “Fiancee wants to ‘marry’ Beng Hock.” I hate reading these sensationalised news because we are making use of their grief for our own selfish purpose.

Yesterday, I couldn’t bear watching the video of Beng Hock’s mother sobbing. It was so excruciating painful and yet, disgusting. Disgusting because we are all mere spectators. Yes, DAP/PR’s aim is to make the public feel compassion, stir a bit of anger, create the need to demand for change, make them angry enough to pressure the BN’s government and more. But I wonder how many actually put aside all ambitious plans, demand for RCI, demand for this, for that and just be there for the family without any expectations or strings attached. Without all the giant banners and badges.

So, dear DAP folks, please stop encroaching into the family’s privacy now. Tell the media to stop haunting them. Give them space. Do them a favour by finding someone who is familiar with grief counselling. Tell Beng Hock’s fiancee that whatever she thinks she want to do now, hang on. She has a whole life ahead of her. Find someone willing to just listen to Beng Hock’s mother’s murmurs. She will talk and talk and ask and ask. She may be a bit ‘out of her mind’. Thoughts of suicide do cross bereaved mothers’ mind and the fiancee’s mind. I had gone through many nights hoping I never wake up in the morning. It is all ‘normal’ and part of the package of losing a child.

Please do not feed their initial bereavement feelings with all sorts of promises. Please do not pour more kerosene. When I say leave them alone to grief, I am not saying, let’s leave the party who are guilty. We have to pursue the culprits. But we cannot use the family as pawns.

I wish there is a more intimate video of who Beng Hock is. I wish someone will spend time with his friends, his families and colleagues to just hear what the ‘alive’ Beng Hock is. I have seen enough of his dead body and that too, is a very tasteless way of making people compassionate. I tell you, the next time someone died, we will be so jaded.

When do we stop mourning for Beng Hock? Now. But when do the family stop? Never.

5 thoughts on “When do we stop mourning the death of Teoh Beng Hock

  1. Though he could not be undefeated, he remained undaunted till the end giving his life for something bigger than himself! Truly a hero that deserves my respect!

  2. Thank you for verbalizing my thoughts on the event as a whole.
    I can understand the need to drum up support to rally around his unfortunate demise but… what about Kugan? Why is he less of a tragedy just because he is indian, and lower economic strata? Does that make him a pariah compared to Beng Hock?
    Like someone who wrote in Theresa Kok’s FB, I am tired to be a Malaysian… I feel like that because I know of many friends (chinese in particular) who are not willing to do anything but expects the same results as those who attend vigils, or dare to step up to do something at all.
    I just want to say pordah to them, pengecut. BUT I cannot, simply because I too cannot be there to step up and make the difference … 🙁

  3. Dominic – You should hear the Chinese kopitiam talk. The other day, I innocently talked to a bunch of ah peks lah. I told them I met Kugan’s mom and how sad their situation is because until today, half a year later, the family has no proof whatsoever why Kugan was detained and the family cannot get any justice because no post mortem report as the police has taken the blood samples. I thought they will be sympathetic. But instead, they tok 3 tok 4 things that made me so sad being a Chinese too. It is sad but racism exists and a lot of people cannot see beyond skin colour. And yes, Chinese mostly do not like to get involve. They just love a melodrama and get fired up at ceramah talks. However, I am still thankful that we Penangites are rather involved and the spirit to make the changes, instead of waiting for changes are in most of us. Maybe we are lucky we have Lim Guan Eng and his two multi-racial deputy CMs.

    9pek9bo – Ya, but I hope the family is not being stalked just for sensational news without sympathy. One of the thing we were taught by the veteran journalist, Abang Nash is to feel for our subjects and not just use them for stories.

  4. I skip all video, photos and news that show Teoh family grief. For god sake reason, my mind boggling since I read the news, it took a good 7 days to settle my mind.

    You are right, media, including those alternate media, should give some space for Teoh family.

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