Monday, June 02, 2008

Ah, Monday. Two weeks of school remain and then we’re in for a whopping eleven week summer vacation.

Hold me.

Okay, well don’t because I’d be all stiff and awkward. But come on over, have a drink with me and we’ll watch the kids swim and laugh while we commiserate a bit, would you?

Yesterday I found out that my boy? My super-cute little hockey playing straight A student. Apparently, he’s found himself to be the target of a schoolyard bully.

Of course, naturally he’s not the type of bully that all of the other kids rally against, making him powerless. This one is the head of the popular, football playing clique. (Already with this football/jock shit, it’s fifth grade for crying out loud.) The one that no one dares to speak against, lest they be blacklisted too.

He’s from one of those families. Well known in town because the mom is involved in everything, the family owns a local business, and they’re super into the sports, the whole family. Mostly no one ever says a word against them and maybe they’re not even a bad sort, I don’t run in those circles so I only know what I hear from others.

I do know, however, that he’s making my boy pretty damn miserable. There’s a big group of boys in their class. They all hung out together for most of this year, my boy and a few others being a bit on the outside of it all - which I felt was fine, these aren’t the type of kids that I really want my son hanging with anyway…in class, forced comradeship? Okay. Sleeping over and hanging out on a rainy Saturday? Nah.

Well, this kid has decided to ostracize my boy from the group. Now, I’m sure all the other ‘on the fringe’ kids are thanking god that he didn’t choose them to pick on but that’s not making things too much easier for us.

And today, all of my son’s friend’s classes are fieldtripping – leaving my boy on his own at recess and lunch. He was kind of freaked out about what he was supposed to do all by himself and worried about not being able to fall under this kid’s radar the entire time. So I told him I’d pick him up early.

Mistake? I don’t freaking know. I’d like to think it’s not, there’s ten days of school left, a long summer break, where hopefully this kid will outgrow his meatheaded behavior. (“Only a 66.6 % chance we’ll be in the same group next year” is what my son said to me last night at bedtime).

We talked about confronting him, different things he could say – he wasn’t really having any of it. He was worried that if he says something and tries to walk away that this kid will follow him. My husband told him to stand his ground, then. Which made me cringe a little bit, even though I tend to agree. Lord knows my son can hold his own, just ask my nephew.

If it were September, the beginning of the school year, I wouldn’t have even entertained this half day thing. The whole bully thing would have to be dealt with. But now, with summer so close…I feel like, maybe it would be best just to let it all play out quietly until the end of the year. I know that’s what my son wants, he told me that he doesn’t want me talking to his teacher and that he can handle it, which of course, remains to be seen.

What do you think?


Mig said...

I think ...

I will never hear you say that I treat my children with kid gloves ....

And ... there's nothing wrong with what you did. School is a tough environment. These kids all have to gel together and it just isn't easy any way you cut it.

I wish I were in 5th grade though, so I could kick his sorry ass.

My bad.

jenny said...

Well, kicking his sorry ass is pretty much what my husband suggested if the boy were to even lay a finger on him.

You know I'm a big fan of the suck it up and deal school of thought, which is why I'm wondering what made me go this route.

I think it's the lure of summer and school free days beckoning me...

blackbird said...


I can't type it fast enough.

I've done this kind of thing - it's not worth dealing with the teacher at this stage of the game...and the summer WILL change everything.

mainelife said...

go with your maternal instincts on this. HALF DAY seems like a perfect solution at this stage of the school year.

If the summer isn't enough to fix the solution, don't ignore it. Bullying can take a terrible toll if it's not dealt with but it sounds like you're doing a great job of parenting on this.

Jennifer said...

I think you did just fine :) I really admire your parenting skillz ;)

catsteevens said...

This is something I'm glad I read. Having never dealt with bullying myself, I would not know how to handle it. You are brave and I, too, admire your parental skills.

Amy said...

I agree that at this point, it's probably pointless to talk to his teacher or to make a big fuss. However, just asking the teaching for some advice might not be a bad plan. Get her take on it before you don't have another perspective. She might have heard other such rumblings or have watched the bully in action and can tell you a little more about what the problem is.

And while I'm all in favor of the deal with it later, I would deal with it now if I thought my son were going to stress about it for the summer.

Jennifer said...

Hey you... how are ya??

BabelBabe said...

I will have the little rat knee-capped.

meanwhile, you did exactly the right thing. school year is over, for all intents and purposes.