My Inspiration

My Inspiration

Tuesday, 15 January 2013

A Bully Or Two...

I haven't been here in a while. 

I have a couple excuses though. I'm pregnant and running after a toddler, my computer is still broken (it's not the power cord like we thought. It's something much more expensive to fix and basically it will be cheaper to buy a new computer), and the biggest reason is because I have been so mad that I was scared to come on here and blog and rant and say things I would regret.

But, I've had time to think, and this is my blog. This is my journal. Yep, it's online for all the world (and my 31 followers) to read, but this is my "therapy". It helps me to write it out.

Today, we're gonna talk about bullying.

It's recently come to my attention that there is another mom who bullies my kid. Now, first of all I need to say that I have no disillusions about my child. I know that sometimes she doesn't listen. I know that sometimes sharing is an issue. I know that she is much more vocal about her emotions than some other children. But, guess what, she's not even 2. And most of those things that are "wrong" with her, are the same "issues" that any other mother of a toddler has to deal with.

Does that mean it's ok for Aislynn to take a toy from someone else? Absolutely not. 

Is it ok though, for another mother to say that my daughter has a "nasty habit of stealing toys" from another child all the time? No. In fact, what's worse than my daughter acting like a child is the fact that the grown adult singled my child out to be the "bad child."

And that kind of bullying is the worst.

It is not fair to my kid that this other mom makes me feel like I can't take Aislynn to certain play groups because her daughter might be there. It's not fair to Aislynn that this other mom follows Aislynn around to "make sure" she is "behaving". It's not fair that this mom takes toys from Aislynn because she had "probably stolen from her daughter in the first place."

I will not apologize for my daughter's spirit. I am proud to be raising a little girl who has spunk. Of course I will redirect my daughter when she does do something inappropriate like taking a toy. BUT, I'm not going to punish her for something that she may or may not do. Do you get written up at work because you were late one time and will probably be late again? No, you get written up AFTER you have broken the rules. Take that same route with the kids then.

What is with moms that think their kids are perfect? Does this other mom think I don't see her daughter quietly taking toys from my own kid? It's a two way street, lady, and although my child is a lot louder when taking a toy by yelling, "MINE!" don't you dare assume that your daughter doesn't take things from Aislynn. She's just, obviously, better at it because she does it quietly. You are teaching your daughter, and mine, that the quieter you are at misbehaving, the more you can get away with.

I could sit here and write a whole list of things that I've seen your child do that was inappropriate. How is that productive though? I know that your daughter is 2, so when she does something silly I respond appropriately. Because I am the grown up. I am the one who needs to be setting an example.

I have a friend who has a daughter just like mine who has been going through the same issue as me. We've talked at length about what's going on and how much it hurts to see our daughter's being bullied in this way. My friend told me, "Doing what's right for your girl is never wrong, it may be awkward but it's never wrong." I have been saying that over and over again to myself. Because right now I want to call this other mom and punch her in the nose for treating my daughter like she's a bad kid. What's that going to teach my daughter though? I should talk to her rationally about it. Tell her I don't appreciate that she is singling my daughter out in this way, gently remind her that Aislynn is only 2, and her daughter behaves in the same way. 

Instead, I'm just burying my head in the sand and not talking to her. Not explaining why I'm hurt. Not explaining why I don't go to some of my mommy groups anymore. Just not standing up for myself. I want to protect my little girl from the cruelty of life. So instead of calling this mom out, I have just been hiding her away from the bully. I don't want her to grow up feeling like her personality is wrong. I LOVE that she is my spunky girl. She feels her emotions so extremely. She will tell you how she is feeling and you will know when she is mad/sad/happy/amused. And that's ok. She also is a really caring little girl who gives hugs and kisses to her friends. She does actually share toys with a lot of kids. She loves to glue pieces of yarn onto paper. She loves little babies and shows that by getting on her tummy and laying with them. She likes to help mummy cook and bake and she likes to help daddy unload the dishwasher. She loves to dance when music comes on. Especially when daddy picks her up and slow dances with her. She loves to cuddle on the couch with cucumbers while watching Shrek. My daughter is an amazing kid. I'm proud to be her mum.  

So, here I am, on my blog sharing how I'm feeling. I'm also looking for advice from you guys. Have you ever dealt with a situation like this before? What did you do? What do you think I should do? 

Other moms, just please remember this. Your kid isn't perfect. So don't expect mine to be either. And if you are having an issue with a behavior, then speak to me about it. Don't tell other moms about my child's "nasty habits" if you don't have the courage to come to me and try to work something out. We live in a tiny town. Word gets around.


susanne said...

That was an awesome read btw :)

Firstly, good on you for believing in your sweet girl!

As hard and uncomfortable as it may be, you need to just try to put it out there and tell her how you are feeling. Its sad and pathetic that she is treating a 2 year old this way. She's 2!!! Some 40 year olds don't know how to share for crying out loud! This is the age where kids are learning all this..and as much as we all want our child to be ahead of the game, polite, sharing, and willing to just hand over a toy, or not long for one someone else has, its not going to happen!

Whatever is right for YOUR child is know her better than anyone else..dont let this woman have the power over you to doubt yourself or your daughter. I would just remind her that they are toddlers, are learning..I think it may not really even be so much about your daughter..she may have an issue with you...women can be catty..and she may be taking it out on your baby girl :(. Sad, but true, that an adult would bully a baby like that. Stick up for yourself and your sweet girl, it can only get better from here! :)

Anonymous said...

You are a wonderful mom and Aislynn is a wonderful child. And bc you and Cuinn are such awesome parents, she's going to grow up to be herself and that is amazing. Don't worry about other moms! Xoxo

Jenn N said...

I know how hard it is to confront someone in a situation like this. It's hard to say what you are feeling (especially when you are in protection mode for your baby!) and come across as being straight forward and non-emotional. Of course we are emotional.

From my experience, I can't live with the anger, so I finally build up the courage to just talk to the person, but it takes me time. Maybe this will be the same for you. In your play groups, perhaps you can watch like an eagle this mom and the other little girl and point out to the mom when the other girl is stealing toys from Aislynn (young kids are great at taking turns stealing stuff). Maybe that is enough to use as a starting point for conversation with her.

You'll remember my issue I had at the EYC, and I finally addressed it, and I feel so much better for having done it. I hope you can find the same relief I did.

Long and short of it - and I've said this to you before - please don't fault me for standing up for/doing the best I can for my kid. You would do the same. So go do what you need to in order to protect your babe. Also, have a candy cane to feel better.

Miss you guys.

pippasmum said...

It is horrible that you have to go through this. Even if Aislynn didn't share and took things from other children, she's 2 and she's just figuring out the world. Who among us is perfect when we start out at something new? At these playgroups, is there a leader or someone in charge? I'm just wondering whether you might be able to talk to someone confidentially who might be able to intervene in the situation so that you don't have to. As far as I am concerned, we are all responsible for our own children and other parents should not be policing our children.
I am just sorry you are having to go through this. It makes you fear for high school, doesn't it? You just want to shut them away from the world to protect them from the mean girls (and mean mommies!)