Tuesday, February 12, 2008

I hate the freakin school bus


I'm having deja vu and experiencing some motherly tendencies once again. Remember when I told you guys about the boys on Jake's bus being ugly to him? Well, since then his bus got too crowded so they split the bus and made two. Jake ended up on a different bus than the bullies which was nice, but the drama has begun again.

Jake has been telling Austin and me about these two boys on the bus that keep bugging him, calling him names, poking him, throwing things at him, etc. It makes my blood boil, LITERALLY, to hear this. I've never felt like committing a felony more than I do when I hear things like this. So anyway, Austin has this long talk with Jake about standing up for yourself. He told Jake that the next time these two boys start bugging you; you need to stand up, get right in their face and say, "CUT IT OUT!" Or something to that sort. If they don't stop after you warn them, then it's fair game and you can punch them. Austin says this will not only teach THESE boys, but other bullies not to mess with you again. Ugh...I don't like this philosophy, but I do agree that he can't let these guys get away with this. I got a little irritated that Austin told Jake it was okay to hit someone if you're mad at them or mad at what they are doing. Is that really a good lesson to be teaching your children? Especially just after telling your son that he needs to cut back on his violent video games to only twice a week for a couple hours total, AND telling him that we as a family are no longer going to watch anything with unnecessary violence in it. Isn't that a little contradictory? When I tried to voice my opinion and say that I think you should talk to the bus driver or the school teacher or principal, I was shut down. This is what I was told, "Why would you want to send a message that Jake is weak so other kids will pick on him?" Whatever...you know, sometimes when you're the mom you just have to shut up and let the chips fall where they may to prove your point and THIS was one of those situations. I bit my tongue and left the conversation.

The next day on the bus, the bullies continued to irritate Jake. So what did he do? Exactly what his father taught him. First he stood in their face and warned them, but when that didn't work he punched them in the face. He came home to tell Austin about this but he still seemed discouraged. He said the first boy backed away, but the second boy just laughed at him and kept bugging him. That's never good. As much as I wanted to step in, I still remained silent, just listening to the events that took place and again, the advice that was reiterated to Jake.

Today, my Jake gets off the bus with this horrible look on his face, his eyes full of tears, and his cheek as red as an apple. I knew what had happened before he even said a word. Apparently, the two boys were at it again. Sitting behind Jake, they were hitting him in the head with their fists over and over and laughing. (I know, I'm steaming, I wanna kill someone). So Jake, being told exactly how to handle the situation, turns around and says, "STOP IT RIGHT NOW!" Well, to his surprise, one of the boys decided he wasn't going to wait for Jake to hit HIM, he was going to hit JAKE this time. So he slugs my sweet baby boy across the face. UGH, I wanna scream!!!

SO here's my problem, what IS the right thing to do? I don't want my sons to grow up being weaklings and always running off to tattle, but where do you draw the line? I feel like defending himself would be the right thing to do in a situation where he had no one else to turn to. BUT, in THIS situation he has the bus driver, his school teacher and the principal ALL there to help stop this. I want him to be tough, but I don't want him to feel like he has to take care of this issue alone as a second grader who has no fighting skills. I could use some advice! I know many of you have young children yourselves and may have not come across this type of experience yet, but I know some of you readers have older sons (Vicki, I'm talking about you!) who may know how to handle something like this or things similar to this in the future. I just want to make sure I know how to handle it so I can give the right advice to Jakob and feel confident that everything will be okay. So my question is: When is it okay to fight back and when is it not?

It's so hard being a mom. I love my Jake so much and it kills me to know that people are being ugly to him. He is seriously the sweetest and most caring kid in the world and I know that's why people seek him out as someone to pick on. I hate that. I'm glad the bus driver is keeping her eyes on the road, but doesn't she need to occasionaly look up and check on the kids to make sure they aren't killing each other? What the heck is she doing? I want to take him off the bus and hide him from the world but I know that's not the answer and I, WE, need to face this head on.

11 comments:

Lindsay said...

First off... What a bunch of BULL. I wanna freakin' punch those kids myself!!!... on the more rational side. I don't think jake should ever think it's okay to hit people... UNLESS.. he gets hit first. As self defense i think it's okay but don't initiate it... he could get in a lot of unnessary trouble down the road for this. Sorry Austin...i don't want Jake to be a movie theater hooligan and make his girlfriend or wife feel like white trash. That's all. I guess i'm the least qualified to answer this since i don't have children but that's my two cents.

Amanda said...
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Amanda said...
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Anonymous said...

What's lost in translation is that I never told Jake to hit first. I instructed Jake to tell the kids to stoping hitting him after they intialy hit him awhile back. If the kids do not take heed to his demands, Jake has all rights to send a message to protect his person. Unfortunately, bus drivers and teachers will do nothing to solve this problem. Bullies and punk kids only pick on those that don't fight back. "The threat of violence perserves peace." Not only does that truth exist on the global scale, it exists on the playground. Why do we act so cowardly when we should and must confront others that wrong us or hurt us. I don think violence sovles every problem. Violence, however, has its place in resolving conflict. In general, when a person knows that there will be severe and immediate consequences to their actions they will behave differently. Regardles how big and strong one may be, they do not like to be hit. No one likes to be hit. When the punk kid realizes he will receive immediate retaliation, he will reconsider his future actions. This is basic human nature. I want Jake to learn how to resolve conflict peacefully. I also want him to learn how to resolve conflict in a nonpeaceful manner. When someone touches you or physicaly harms you, there needs to be a severe and quick response. It’s one thing if the kids were making fun of Jake. Just ignore them. You can’t ignore them if they hit you. I could go on forever on the topic of resolving conflict with violence and nonviolence.
-Austin

Amanda said...

Austin--thanks for explaining:) I was just giving my opinion of which I have one on every subject---which is not always good! YOu are his Father and I am sure you know what is best for Jake to do and understand the situation way better than I do:)

Janae said...

Okay, now I really don't want Raymond to grow up.

I'm so sorry and equally clueless as to what to do. The bus seemed nicer in my day.

Anonymous said...

Amanda – I loved your comments and I love criticism. It makes me critically think about the situation and reevaluate my thinking. Jessica firmly believes I’m wrong on how I handled the situation. I think the way one would handle this type of situation is determined by gender. Each gender seems to have a particular way of thinking. The male wants to beat his chest and roar to preserve his pride. When someone beats or roars louder it’s time to fight. It’s immature but necessary at times. It makes us feel better. The female is more sensible and cunning in the way they handle their business. I need to take notes. I severely lack sensitivity. Forgive me for coming across as defensive. I truly believe we are all responsible for raising civil, respectful children. You, Lindsay, and Jess have altered my thinking a bit. Primarily because Jessica scolded me for my way of thinking. The point is; this blog is for open honest communication. Our family is very open and we welcome everyone’s point view. Finally, Jessica has officially banned me from posting anymore comments.
Austin

The Lowes said...

i just don't want you to run off my sweet bloggers....ur not banned u dork, u know that. i love you no matter how serious and long ur comments are :)

The Lowes said...

Here's an update that I sent to a friend of mine through email but I also wanted to share with you guys too!

i actually called the school and the transportation dept. yesterday and already told them about it all. they are going to pull all 3 boys out of class today to talk to them. i told jake to be honest about everything he did as well even if he gets in trouble. i think this will be a good lesson for him overall about how he will want to handle sitatuations like this in the future. he doesn't like getting in trouble so maybe he'll only resort to fighting back after he's tried everything ELSE before that (talking to the kids, then the teacher, principal, bus driver, etc.). It sucks to have to let go of a little bit of him each day and watch him make these choices that I want to make for him, but he's a good kid and I know he'll be okay and learn from this.

Amanda said...

Austin --I was not offended:) Sometimes I am too opinionated and I didn't want to step on any toes! Yes--Men are very different from women! LOL! Don't worry I won't ever be run off your blog:) Keep us updated.......

David & Teresa George said...

Ok, I say "beat the .... out of those boys, Jake" They are brats and need a punch in the nose. You are the sweetest boy and i am so sad that this is happening to my Jake.

Love you dearly,
Mawmaw