Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Problems with Bullies

My husband is coming home tomorrow! I've missed him! Doesn't help that he is visiting where I would love to visit, too, and I miss him and being with him there!

But, I am home, and we've got problems at home today.

A look back - two years ago, my middle son had problems in school. He was being picked on by some kids, teased mercilessly, and was angry. He is the quiet explosive type of angry child who prefers not to talk about what is going on. It was difficult to help him without knowing what was happening. It was so severe that he even soiled himself at night at times. His teacher that year was new and already overwhelmed with teaching a split class.

We made it through that year, and the next one was better as the boys who gave him trouble were now in fifth grade and had moved out of the grade three/four split. This year, though, they are back together in the fifth/sixth split. The first half of the year went relatively well. There were a few minor bumps and the teacher was very good at helping and sorting through the mess.

Recently, though, he has begun to show stress again, not liking school, and writing in his journal about being teased and mocked by these two boys, and once by his brother with whom I will have a very serious chat this very night! The principal pulled me aside to talk to me today, and I shared what I knew. We don't know exactly all that is happening. On the outside, my son still looks relatively happy and excited about school, but his journal writings are more and more stressed about these two boys.

Can I ask you to pray for him? And pray for wisdom for me and for his teachers and principal. I have a good relationship with them and am often in the school, so we can work together as a team to help in this situation.

I am hurt and disappointed today. I was so hoping that we were making it through. He had healed and improved so much in fourth grade without these boys and this year he seemed to be weathering it ok, but now this. I'm concerned about seventh grade then, when he will be back with these boys. Do I put him through it one more time? Or what?

Just pray. And anyone with experience with this, please write. I'm a bit lost here. I was hurt as a kid, but not by bullies. I did have one year as a fresh back home MK that I was in a position to be teased, but I had a great teacher who not only cared for me but also got the class to accept me as much as they could and even invite me to their houses for sleepovers and parties. Mr. Fox - thank-you.

But dealing with a whole class's attitudes is different than dealing with two boys who have their own emotional problems and whose defense is to pick on my son. One of these boys is fat (truth, not being politically correct or mean.) and doesn't do well in school - not because he isn't smart, but because he gets more attention that way. Both come from broken homes. The other had a cleft palate and has scarring on his face. His mother left them without any explanation about three years ago, and he has huge emotional scarring from that. I understand that these are hurting kids who need us, and I try. But I also need to be able to protect and care for my own child who is bearing the brunt of their pain. They call him, always when the teacher can't hear, short, fat, and dumb. I'll own up to the short part - he is, probably always will be, but he is neither fat nor dumb.

Just cover #2 in prayer. He's going to need it. I need it to as I struggle to find out how to help him.

4 comments:

Alan & Beth McManus said...

I'm praying for you. As a teacher I've had to deal with bullies several times, but I'm not a very gentle person so I'll refrain from any advice.

Cindy said...

praying Ellie...

hugs to all...

Shan in Japan said...

I'll be praying for you, your son, the teacher, the principal, the class, and the two boys. Ah, what a difficult place to be. Prayers...

E. T. Tenna said...

Hi, Ellie, I am coming here after too much time away from reading the blogs I follow...though it's now 2.5 weeks after you posted...I am praying for son#2 today...trusting God to guide you as you coach him through this unfamiliar jungle.