Thursday, November 10, 2011

Crying at School

Reuben complained about someone being mean to him at school. Saying mean things, like they weren't friends. Reuben was very matter of fact about it, so I assumed it wasn't a huge deal, that it wasn't hurting his feeling terribly.

Then yesterday, I stuck around and watched him play before school. He went up to a group of three boys, two are the same boys I have seen him play with every morning, and one the one he had told me about. I couldn't hear was what said, but it seemed pretty normal. Then the boys started running together, I figured it was part of the game. They ran to the play structure, and up the stairs, Reuben pulling up the rear. Then the boy Reuben told me about turned around and yelled, "WE ARE NOT PLAYING WITH YOU REUBEN!"

Reuben stopped, dumb struck. Stood there for a while, and then came up to me and started crying. Almost immediately the bell rang. I hugged Reuben until the crying was just sniffles, and then he ran to get in line.

I found out later, that Reuben wasn't done crying from his teacher. The rule is, "We don't hurt bodies, and we don't hurt feelings." We had a nice talk with Reuben's teacher about it.

Last night decided what to do if it happened again. Reuben decided he would say, "That hurts me feelings" instead of "you are being mean" because then he won't perpetuate the meanness. We practiced saying, "that hurt my feelings." He told me he would tell his teacher if the boy didn't stop saying mean things after Reuben told him it was hurting his feelings.

So, I observed this morning. Same thing, Reuben went up to the three boys. The boy said something mean. Reuben said, "That hurt's my feelings." They all started running Reuben included, they stopped, and the boy said something mean again. Before Reuben came too, one of the boys that has been playing with Reuben from the beginning of the school year kicked the boy.The kicker, is learning English as a second language, and communicates physically.

The rational mommy in me says that kicking is wrong, no matter how mean someone is being. The only time you should kick is if you are in physical danger and you are protecting yourself. The momma bear in me holds a special place in my heart for that little boys who defended Reuben.

I want to hang back and let the boys work it out. All I can do is coach my boy in the things to say, and how to respond. I just hope Reuben can restrain himself and remain innocent in the whole thing, but I'm having a hard time doing that, so I can't imagine it's any easier for Reuben.


Becki said...

I hate when kids are mean...and good job to that boy who defended Reuben!!! He's such a cute, sweet could kids not want to play with him!?!? Good job coaching him through things...and I hope it gets easier for him!!! You're a good, loving Mom...and he's lucky to learn from you!!!

Kay Jones said...

I'm really proud of you for sticking around, talking to your son, finding ways to talk to his friends, and having him talk to his teacher. Good going Mom!

Rachel said...

Go, little kicker!! Hugs to you! I would've kicked "the boy" too. Rotten child.