Friday, April 4, 2008

Bullies are Everywhere

April 4, 2008

This morning when dropping Lola off at school she got out of the car and loudly stated “Brrrrr! Oh, my GOSH!! I’m not cold, I’m FREEZING!” One of the carpool attendants heard her and said “Wow, Lola, did you learn to speak English overnight? That was fantastic!”

It amazes me at how the school faculty and students don’t think she can speak much English at all, yet at home she talks a blue streak. Every day I hear a new word she has discovered in one of her classes, as well as other words she may have learned at home from me. I chuckle to think that one day she will be in class, and blurt out (in perfect English) the answer to a question the teacher asks. Won’t they all be surprised?~! I wonder how many jaws will have to be prodded up from the floor!

Lola has been having occasional ‘bully’ issues with a girl in her homeroom. It seems this girl could not keep her hands and feet to herself and Lola seemed to be on the receiving end more than once. After I was certain not to be an over-reactive mother I finally addressed the situation with Lola’s teacher yesterday. The negative behavior and hitting stopped immediately. When I went to pick Lola up from school yesterday she said “Mama, ‘Bad Girl’ (I won’t use names in this case in order to protect the guilty) today stand by teacher, sit by teacher and no talk.” I told her it was because I told the teacher about ‘Bad Girl’ being mean to her and it should not happen anymore. Wow, the smile of relief that came over Lola’s face was amazing. I reminded Lola that teachers here in America are there to help her and if she has any problem and I’m not there she should always tell her teacher. I realized that was a pretty foreign concept to her. I figure in the orphanage the children don’t really have anyone to go to if they are victims of bullying. The teachers are much too busy or discouraged from helping and there are no moms to report the problem to. So, I imagine in many cases these orphan children must learn to deal with the bullies the best way they know how, or in some cases become a bully themselves simply for the purpose of self-preservation. At any rate, Lola was quite happy the problem was addressed by her teacher and now hopefully she can stop being bothered by this girl.

Of course, after much pondering prior to my reporting all this to Lola’s teacher I thought maybe this ‘Bad Girl’ may actually want to be Lola’s friend but perhaps lacked the social skills to deal with a student who is different that she is. I thought maybe we could invite this girl over to the house for a play date and see how it goes. I want so much to take the Christian stand on things and give this child the benefit of the doubt, but since I don’t know her or her parents I feel inclined to be somewhat cautious. The teacher did tell me this girl has always been a bit of a problem and abusive to other students and the next thought in my mind was - - - is this little girl the victim of abuse at home?

For now the ‘Bad Girl’ is under a tight rein. All I can do at this point is pray for this girl and her family…

1 comment:

Elizabeth said...

At least Lolita didn't bully back. One of my Russian sisters punched a girl at school who was harrassing her! And she's from Lolita's orphanage, I might add. I'm sure a lot of misunderstanding can happen: jokes that don't translate well across cultures, that kind of thing.