I was having a conversation with a friend last week, we were talking about bullying at school. It has happened to H a few times, and now my anger has gone and it has been dealt with, I have a different perspective.
See, I was bullied at school. I don’t remember what happened exactly, it was a long time ago. I’m pretty sure my parents didn’t get involved and left me to sort it out. It might have worked, who can say? There are no Sliding Doors in real life, it is what it is. My sister was bullied too and my parents got involved. Again, I’ve no idea if it helped. I don’t remember being bullied until I hit big school at 11. In fact, it didn’t happen for a few years. I had no idea what to do. So I just learned to talk quickly and run faster and keep my head down which seemed to help.
But it’s happened a few times to H at the tender age of 5. It seems like it’s something which is more ‘normal’ these days. But in some ways, I think it’s a good thing it’s happening now, as long as it isn’t affecting her time at school. If it gets to the ‘I don’t want to go to school’ phase, then I’ve missed the signs. But it hasn’t.
Instead we’ve made sure she knows she isn’t in the wrong (once she has explained the whole situation and how it happened). We’ve made sure she knows what the correct thing to do is (tell a teacher or someone in charge). We’ve also made sure she knows to not be upset by it – easier said than done, but she can be quite tough when she wants to be.
Don’t get me wrong. I hate that she’s learning about these things at such a young age, but at the same time I’m glad she’s learning to deal with them, if that makes any sense? If it ever gets worse she’ll be better equipped to deal with it. People can be evil. Children can be evil.
Nobody has hurt her though she has been spat on more than once. She knows what to do. It’s disgusting, and it’s dealt with. She has been shoved by other kids in the playground into areas she isn’t meant to play in, and was upset by it, but “didn’t let them see” – just had a little cry and cuddle with me at home. Is it fair? No – but we can’t change other people. You can only make sure those in charge are aware.
Has anything been done? Probably. They can’t talk about the other children to you, but they can reassure you things have been changed. You have to trust them. We’ve had nothing reported back to us lately by H.
I do wonder if the bullying at school made me into who I am today. It didn’t define me, but I was too scared to stand up to them. I hid. So it has definitely shaped me. I don’t want bullying to shape H. I want her to grow up with the confidence to tell them to bog off and leave her alone, and keep out of trouble. I want it to be something she forgets about when she gets older. After all, we only ever bring up our children and change it if we didn’t like how our parents did it, right?