Jun 29, 2007

The Big Bad World

Yesterday after dinner, as is customary in my life, I started inquiring my kids about the day's happenings. My younger one suddenly became morose and tense. I could sense something was amiss. On further prodding I came to know that she had came back home from school in tears. She would not tell anyone what the reason was. Nevertheless, the stream of tears wouldnt stop. After a lot of cajoling, she finally came out with the reason.

It seems that a girl in her class is a big bully and has suddenly decided that my D would be her target for all ragging experiences. She would hit her without any reasons or some miniscule one, pull her hair, tease her for some or the other reason. It seems my daughter is not the only one, there is one more tortured soul with her. It had been happening for sometime now.

On hearing this, I started fuming inside. The mother in me could not bear to see my poor child be a subject of such a treatment. My first instinct was to somehow catch hold of the girl the next day and give her a whacking. But then the child isnt mine and neither is corporal punishment a good idea. I thought of going to the school and atleast threaten the child. I thought of complaining to the teacher. I thought of taking it up with the childs parents.

But then after cooling down I realised that I should not interfere. My hubby voiced his opinion that the parents should not interfere and the children should learn to deal all this among themselves. I am all for this ... as long as it is within limits. Physical abuse is certainly beyond that limit. And yet, I know he is right. How long will I go on protecting my child? She should learn to stand up against such treatment. She should learn to fight back. Its not without a reason that they say that experience is the best teacher.

So, I have advised her to voice her feelings to that girl strongly. If she still wont listen, I have asked her to complain to the teacher and if things dont improve, I might come into the picture.

So, here I sit hoping she comes back home with a smile! How tough parenting is! Sigh!


Just like that June 29, 2007 at 4:56 PM  

WIN- physical abuse is indeed worrying.I think if it has been going on for sometime, you should speak to the other abused kid and if needed get the teacher to reprimand the Bully.
However, now that your D knows she has her Mom's support, she may tackle the Bully herself. Keeping my fingers crossed too.

Usha June 30, 2007 at 8:24 AM  

When I see such things happening, I sometimes wonder if we are making our kids unfit to cope with the bad world outside. But it is important that they know what is right.
Parenting is a constant struggle between protecting them just enough and allowing them to be self sufficient at the same time. Sigh....
I hope your girl learns to give it back to this bully. But if it gets beyond a certain point I think you should complain to the teacher.

~nm July 3, 2007 at 12:15 PM  

Hi, I'm not sure if what I'm going to suggest will work out for you too! It worked for my younger sister and for my son too!

I remember my younger sister when was going to class 1, someone used to bully her and hit her. After this had happened a few times, my Ma told her that if that person hits you once, you hit back twice. I remmber beign shocked when I heard Ma say that. The next day, when my sister came back home, she was all happy and that person was totally shocked and went away after my sister hit that person twice in return of the attack and never bothered her again.

So I tried to use the same method when my son used to complain about a boy hitting him at his play school. It took time but then those complaints stopped coming. told him if that boy hits you, you hit him twice and then you complain to the Ma'm. And when I would askh im if he hit you again, he would say yes and I hit him back and I told ma'm. And ma'm ne usko datti kari! (Ma'm scolded that boy!)

WhatsInAName July 5, 2007 at 10:26 PM  


Apparently my D did manage to threaten the girl and it seems she is quiet now :)

Usha :
In my heart of hearts, I wanted to run and hug my baby and run away to some nice world but I was afraid I am turning her into a coward! I just hope they grow up strong to deal with everything!

NM :
I have given the same advice and feel so bad about it. Is it good to teach our kids to hit back?
Well... we dont have a choice, do we?

Swati July 6, 2007 at 4:37 PM  

Hey WIN..Parenting is indeed tough ...but ur hubby is correct..she has to learn to handle all and trust that she can. BTW ..do update us ..how did it go ?

Saw you on JLT and so I just peeped in ..and I guess you will see me here often !

Gauri July 6, 2007 at 7:12 PM  

I hear you loud and clear on this one.
Been through this fairly recently too - with my younger child.
Very right you are in saying that we cannot stand up for them for ever.
But then, sometimes, in teaching our children the "right" way of doing things - for instance - telling them that hitting people is a no no, shouting at people is bad manners etc - are we, ourselves, putting them at a disadvantage when it comes to dealing with the outside world.
Just one of those questions I'll be asking myself for a long long time to come.

WhatsInAName July 9, 2007 at 3:19 PM  

Swati :
Thanks for stopping by :) Apparently, my D gathered courage to threaten the girl that she would complain to the teacher. The girl has promised to behave herself. I just hope they are friends now!

Gouri :
Dont know..I guess the key lies in observing them. As long as they are not physically affected, as long as their self esteem isnt affected, I think we can stay away. I just hope I am going in the right direction!

Twisted DNA July 13, 2007 at 4:00 AM  

Did she come back with a smile? I agree with you and your husband that for small things like occasional pulling hair or hitting, you should let her deal with it. But I am sure you both will be watching like hawks from now on, asking your daughter what the status is every day to make sure that this abuse is not continuing. It is so hard to see our kids gets hurt and not being about do much about it :(

WhatsInAName July 13, 2007 at 11:03 AM  

Hawk is the word. And yes, its so heart-wrenching when i realise I should not be over protective which is my first maternal instinct :(

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