Monday, March 19, 2007

Bullies are Mean People

I saw that on a t-shirt once. Well, duh! Unfortunately, Son #1 - who as I mentioned before, might be considered an easy target - seems to have attracted a bully. This kid has been in his class since the 4th grade (they're in 6th now). All through 4th and 5th grade, this kid would tease Son #1 - name calling, mimicry, etc.

Last summer Son #1 told me that he hoped Bully wouldn't be in his class again this year. Since they're both in the inclusion program, I told him that in all likelihood they would be in the same class again but to keep an open mind because people sometimes mature over the summer.

And that seemed to be the case. Son #1 and Former Bully actually became friends. Son #1 was invited to Former Bully's birthday party last fall (click here to read about it).

Last Thursday, I get a call from Bully's mom (he's no longer "former" - read on) asking whether Son #1 mentioned what happened at school that day. Um, no. It seem's Bully's mom received a note from the principal regarding an incident between Bully and Son #1. Bully wasn't forthcoming with info, however. Neither was my kid, apparently.

I asked Son #1 about it and he explained that out of the blue three weeks ago, Bully starts slapping my son when no adult is looking. Does Son #1 speak out? No. Why not, I asked? He was hoping Bully would stop. Not a great strategy, I remind him. Anyway, it seems that Son #1 finally had enough and started hitting back whenever Bully would hit him. Gym teacher sent them to the office. Fortunately Son #1 didn't get in trouble for his role and we talked - again - about the difference between defending oneself from harm and retaliating. We had this conversation a couple of months ago. Click here to learn more about that.

I sent a note to the teacher asking that Son #1 and Bully be separated - alphabetically, Bully comes right before Son #1. That could be a problem.

Sigh. Just (sigh....).


Nadine said...

I'm so sorry for your pain. I know that when someone is hurting my kid it just kills me inside. I will pray that this situation will get resolved and that the bully would stop his behavior.

Sue said...

I hope the situation gets better for Son #1 and your family. Is the bully's mom aware that her child's behavior is less than perfect, or is she one that doesn't believe her "perfect" kid could do such things?

Elle*Bee said...

nadine, we were cautiously optimistic this year when the kid quit teasing Son #1 and they actually became friendly at school. But right now, I think Son #1 has decided that 7 months of friendship can't erase 2.5 years of harassment, especially since he's now hitting my son. We'll see though...

sue, actually his mother is not like that at all, thank goodness. She knew there was a problem but when her son wouldn't discuss it, she called me. After I talked to Son #1, I called her back and she seemed to accept Son #1's version of events. Apparently she's been struggling with her son's behavior for a couple of months now. So I say a prayer, b/c it's tough to see your kid acting in a way that's contrary to how you're trying to raise him (or so I'm told).

Lala's world said...

oh so sorry to hear this! you know that I have gone through a fair share of all this myself. it seems with all the education they are trying to push about bullying that the schools/teachers would be more accomidating! I hope it works out that he can be moved!

Elle*Bee said...

lala, It's tough b/c this other kid is sneaky. The teacher can't watch every kid at all times, and if Son #1 doesn't speak up.... *that* still boggles my mind (why he did say something sooner). Son #1 is trying to keep his distance but it's tough b/c they have a common friend they'd hang out with at recess. Son #1 ends up stepping away when the other kid comes along and I don't think that's entirely fair.