We've had a tough week this week, and it's been especially difficult for the kiddo. Alexander's terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day doesn't hold a candle to what Eric's been through this week. Some of the "in crowd" kids took one of his shoes after gym class the other day, he turned in the wrong homework, had a surprise quiz, and was laughed out of a school sponsored Manga club because the other boys didn't like his choices of reading material. Everyone has bad days, and being a middle schooler is always a difficult time, but I feel like he took more than his share of lumps this week. It is especially irritating because the school is in the throws of an anti-bullying campaign.
I also feel like I'm not really helping him. My first reaction is to call the school, but Eric won't give me the names of the boys who are giving him a bad time. I think he is probably worried that they'll bother him even more if they get in trouble. Jeremy and I keep trying to tell him that this is a difficult time for everyone, but I remember feeling so awkward at that age, I don't think that we'll be able to convince him of that until he's 25. I'm also a very over protective mom, so part of me wants to go over to the school and talk to those kids myself, but that would probably be the nail in Eric's social coffin.
I wish that there was some way we could convince him that being popular in school doesn't mean anything in the whole rest of your life, that people who are mean are usually insecure about something, and that all of this emotion, angst, and awkwardness will pass but every time I try I just hear my mom's voice trying to tell me the same things, and I remember how I didn't believe her anymore than Eric's going to believe us.
So this morning, as Eric was leaving for school I gave him a hug. I told him that being popular in school doesn't mean anything in the whole rest of your life. I told him that the people who have been mean to him are probably having some kind of situation of their own and lashing out is the way they are trying to deal with it. I told him that being a teenager is a short time in life and it will pass and I told him that we love him, because I think that's really the only thing we can do right now.