Saturday, June 12, 2010

It Happened Today

I knew it would happen eventually & I prayed I would handle it well. Today was our first time & I think I did OK. I'm just still processing it though.

It was the first racial slur against one of my children & it felt like a cruel attack on our whole family & a painful jolt to my heart.

We were at the pool when the boys came to me & said a boy had called Nathan a bad word that started with "n". They weren't sure what the word was or what it meant but another child had informed them that it was mean. I remained calm & stone faced even though my heart must have been racing. I found out the boy's name & located his parents. I breathed a quick prayer for wisdom & then went over to introduce myself to them. I didn't attack. I explained to them what had happened & that I thought they would want to know their son had said such hurtful words. They were apologetic, embarassed. I felt bad for them. I assured them that I wasn't irrate, just wanted them to know. They gathered their kids & left right away. I felt sad.

I am one of those people who takes awhile to process, so I have no profound words to share about this yet. It was just my first time & it feels bizarre, unfair, and wrong.

My kids still don't know what exactly was said to them. Mark said he thought it might have been "nit wit" which made me smile. I LOVE that innocence but wonder when & how we should approach this issue. Seems to me that it will have to be soon whether I like it or not.


Shaun and Holly said...

I think that you handled it well.

Jensboys said...

I did start talking about this with my sons very young. They need that power to deal with it - -its NOT pleasant its not what we would hope to deal with but it happens. I explained that sometimes people are mean - and sometimes that mean people use words that are meant to hurt people because of many different things. one of those things is skin color. I explained it in terms of being a bully and that it means the person saying the words isnt very smart. I explained it completely it a way that when my boys have been called those words they NEVER internalize it but rather think its a reflection of the person SAYING the words.

It will happen - they need to know it is NEVER acceptable and it is NEVER their fault if they address it. Its not tattling, its not being mean - its fighting against bullying and that is always right.

Wait until you have to explain to your 8 year old why he is being followed in a store by security when his cc brother is not. THAT conversation also sucks.