Right now I’m supposed to be writing over on A Beautiful Bite. That will have to wait for a bit because I have something to say…
I’ve shared before that I have a child who is bullied. I’ve also shared with you that I have no easy answers on how to deal with it. But that doesn’t mean that I’m going to allow it to go on without a fight.
It’s hard to write this post because I have to be careful not to expose the child who is struggling with this issue. However, what I have to say is important and needs to be heard.
My chid has very low self esteem. As much as I’ve tried to build her up over the years, she has been torn down by the mean girls at school.
Here’s her list of violations:
She is stupid because it takes her time to read out loud and she has to sound out some words.
She is ugly.
She doesn’t fit in because she tries too hard to get the kids to like her.
The music she likes is for babies.
Her clothes aren’t “in” enough because she doesn’t wear clothes from the trendy tween stores.
The stuffed animals she takes to school are for babies.
Her hair is not pretty.
Her teeth aren’t straight.
She doesn’t run right. Walk right. Talk right.
Those are just a few of the things that the popular girls say about her.
What are the penalties for her civil infractions?
She has to struggle to find somewhere to sit at lunch.
Finding kids to play with at recess is nearly impossible.
Getting a seat on the bus? Good luck with that.
Birthday party invitations. Yeah, right.
Having one good day when she gets off the bus smiling? It doesn’t happen.
Now, to be honest, my child is in special ed. She struggles. Reading, writing and math do not come easy for my child. Passing grades in these courses were hard won accomplishments. And I am so incredibly proud of her.
I’m broken for her too.
Because she knows that she will never be quite enough. She knows this when she goes looking for that bus seat, that lunch chair, that one friend who will give her a push on the swing if she is lucky enough to get one on the playground.
Because there doesn’t seem to be anyone at her school that is strong enough to be her ally.
And this makes me feel a mix of angry-sad that I can’t even put into words. Rage comes close, but doesn’t really express how I’m feeling. Extreme sorrow is more accurate.
The key tormenter has “anger issues”. Well, forgive me for not giving a crap. Truly. And the other girl who is instrumental in the torture of my child is an elementary schooler going on sixteen. Too old for her age.
My daughter doesn’t have a chance. She just isn’t savvy/worldly/mean enough to cope with this.
And as pissed as I am with the mean girls, I’m equally furious with their parents because they are the reason why their girls are as out of control as they are. Period.
So, what can a child that’s bullied do? Nothing.
Other than “tattle” on the bully, which only leads to additional torture, the victim can do little else. They have to weather the storm. She comes home to me and I try to repair the damage, but frankly the damage has already been done.
Her self esteem is like a war torn flag. Full of holes and only still waving by the grace of God.
As her mother I feel helpless. I can pursue school administrative and legal channels, which I have and will continue to do so. But let me tell you, the damage is irreparable. My daughter isn’t even in the double digits yet and she feels like there’s no hope for her to have a friend.
Our society is failing our children. Every year we hear more and more about bullies and anti-bullying programs, but is it making a difference? I don’t believe so.
I truly believe that nothing will change until the parents are held responsible for their children’s behavior. The parents are the ones that are raising their kids. The ones who are supposed to be instilling values.
You can suspend, penalize, counsel the bullies until the cows come home, but it won’t make a damn bit of difference until the parents are called to the carpet for their crappy parenting.
Until then, I will stand by my child, fighting every step of the way because I will not let this child feel alone in this battle. If she is going to have one ally, then by God it will be me.