Crying Girl Stuck On Climbing Wall While Instructor Texts And Mom Films Instructor Texting

by Jerriann Sullivan
Originally Published: 
A crying girl stuck on a climbing wall and her instructor texting and not responding to her crying.

The instructor was fired after leaving the crying girl stuck on a climbing wall

A video that perfectly captures our addiction to all things digital surfaced this week showing a crying girl stuck on a rock climbing wall while the instructor texted and the child’s mom recorded the incident.

Neither helped the girl for at least a minute. The child is seen sobbing, frantically looking at both adults in charge of watching her while probably thinking, “will one of you get off your damn phone?” Right before the video ends the little girls rests her head on the climbing wall and looks utterly disappointed.

The incident happened at Funtopia Surrey in British Columbia, and the video was posted to Facebook on Wednesday. It has since been taken off of the social media website likely from the harsh criticism the mother, Happy Lani, received from strangers for not immediately helping her child. “But the mother just sits there and video tapes the whole thing? Even though she can see her kid in distress?” one commenter wrote online about the situation. Comments like this one were all over the video Lani published and media reports on the incident.

Has our need to film everything overridden our instincts as parents? Perhaps. But Lani defended her decision online. “It broke my heart not to run and help my daughter right away,” the mom wrote online, according to the Huffington Post. “But I needed to capture this as evidence.” It seems like the mom was worried that if she didn’t have proof the gym wouldn’t believe her.

Another person who commented on the CBC News story raised an excellent point as well which was that the mother might not have known how to safely get her little girl off the wall. Using the climbing equipment isn’t rocket science but most gyms make you take a few classes before letting you climb without an instructor. Which brings us back to the too busy to stop texting teacher who is seen in the video ignoring a small child who is clearly in distress.

The unnamed woman was fired Thursday after the video surfaced. “Obviously, that’s not acceptable. It shouldn’t have happened at all,” Funtopia Surrey’s general manager Yasen Nikolov said. “This particular employee has broke at least three internal rules, starting with no phones outside of the employees room.”

The teacher had been at the rock climbing gym for less than six months but had received training that probably included basic instructions like pay attention to the small children in your care. And while it probably wasn’t the best decision to literally leave her child hanging, at least the mom’s video will prevent this now unemployed instructor from doing the same thing to another child.

Watch the full video below.

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