Friday, November 19, 2010

It bothers him...

Before school yesterday, my little man said to me, "Mama, there's an older kid at school making fun of my ears and it's makin' me and H [his best friend] MAD!!" Now, luckily my small little child has HUGE friends. Not huge as in way too big, but in fourth grade, these boys are growing! So I can only imagine how big the older kid is who is teasing Gage about his little (adorable) ears.

I got fighting mad calmly asked him the usual questions to make sure he wasn't taking a common comment or question and getting upset about it. No, he wasn't. It was teasing, and sternly told my child, "You don't put up with that! You don't have to!" I told him if the kid didn't stop after they've let him know it's not slip by the counselor's office or let his teacher know because they all look out for Gage. His buddies look out for him. Some of the biggest boys in his class have always, since Kindergarten, looked out for him. I remember going into his K and 1st grade class and talking to all the kids about Gage, his surgeries, his ears, his deafness, his cochlear implants, and they have always been very interested, very understanding, yet treat him as their equal. They spend the night at our home, I am their substitute teacher from time to time, I know their parents, I love the kids in fourth grade!!

Back to the story...yes, I got a little heated, who wouldn't when you find out your smart, adorable, loving, kind to others child is being picked on at school. I sent the teacher and counselor an email. I even talked face to face with counselor who took it to the Principal and let's just say they are heated as well. Our next mission is to find out the boy's name since Gage don't know it. We are working on that. Meantime, I tell my child, "...and I'll tell you something else, if any of those older kids knew that you could make a remote controlled toy vehicle from scratch by yourself, they'd be jealous! You don't even need ears with a brain like that! And as a matter of fact, you are THE toughest kid I know. I don't know any other kid that is as brave as you are, walking into the hospital time after time after time, without complaint, for all your don't have to be big to be tough!!" After I realized my face was red and I was borderline ghetto and shaking my head, waving hands everywhere, I stepped back, calmed down..."You know, usually when people make fun of other people, it's because they need something. He likely needs attention, maybe he don't have any real friends, maybe no one plays with him at school, maybe his Mom and Dad talk like that, maybe people make fun of him a lot, but it's not your place to give him what he thinks he needs. You are not to be on the receiving end of his jokes. You don't think it's funny, your friends don't think it's funny. It's not funny, and it'll stop one way or another."
The End for a parent, you can only hope and pray that something you say will help.


ann said...

Let his Nanny know his name!!!!!!

Our Village is a Little Different said...

I have kids who are a little different, and they went through a rough bout of bullying for a while. I have to tell you.. there are very few things in this world that tore me up inside the way that did. I was so torn by fierce need to protect them,and the knowledge that they had to stand up and be strong. God bless you and Gage. He sounds like a great kid, and you are being an awesome mom.