In the last week of school I took my kids to the playground. My ten year old was moping and chose to sit with me rather than enjoy the equipment. I noticed his “girlfriend” (he was actually told he isn’t old enough to have a girlfriend, but it was a label they used anyway) and pointed her out to him, and then I realized the problem. He had the saddest eyes as he told me that she passed a note around the class and wouldn’t let him read it, but one of his friends showed him that it said “I don’t like Kellen”. He was heartbroken and didn’t want to be at the same playground with her, and I didn’t blame him one bit.
On the last day of school I asked Kellen if he had spoken to her yet, and he told me that he had mentioned he hurt his foot and she told him she didn’t care. Why are children so cruel to one another? He has known this girl since kindergarten. She knows our whole family and has even spent some time in our home. I can’t help but think Kellen’s sudden weight gain (medication induced) and change in appearance is the reason for her behaviour, and that makes me mad!
We all know that children need to experience the ups and downs of life in order to learn how to cope and become productive members of society. They will have many broken hearts that they need to deal with and they will probably break a few hearts themselves.
Blah. Blah. Blah.
The truth of the matter is, when my child hurts I want to fix it, and when someone hurts my child … well, I may want to return the favour. The Mama Bear inside of me wanted to march right over to that girl on the playground and give her a piece of my mind. How dare she treat my son like that when he’s had such a difficult year! Instead, I glared at her while she played nearby and she wisely moved to another part of the playground. Then I got wise and removed myself from the situation. Sometimes you need to tame the Mama Bear and a time out was definitely in order.
A couple of days ago my daughter and I were out for a jog when we crossed paths with the little heart breaker. She saw us coming and stared down at her feet. She’s a smart kid and we know each other fairly well, so she obviously knew that she had behaved poorly and that Kellen had told me about it. Mama Bear could have her moment now … but instead I muttered a hello and kept running. I have to remember that she’s ten years old and probably cares about things like cooties and the cheese touch. So I kept the Mama Bear in check for another day.
How do you tame the Mama Bear when one of your children has been hurt?