Motherhood

The Bully.

1st December 2014

We have all heard of them. We have probably all been the victim of one.  Today the term took on a completely different meaning for me, and for my special big boy.  Today Hayden was bullied beyond the definition of bullying.  He was singled out, for gosh knows what reason, and all I can do to stop myself from crying is try and work out the best way to move forward.

Hayden is 7.  Seven.  He is a bright kid, and tests at a reading level to that twice of his age.  He is kind, gentle and can not even hit his siblings when riled let alone another kid.  He is beautiful.  He is bright.  He is kind.  When anyone that knows him describes him, the first few words are always kind, funny, smart.  I know I am biased.  I am his mother.  Today I feel as though he has been fundamentally failed, by not just me, but his school.

Today he was at swimming – an event they seem to do last few weeks of term four as a bit of chaff, a filler basically.  All was going well.  He returned to change back into his uniform when some child, obviously a boy, had taken his and only his, uniform and undies, placed them into the urinal and urinated on them, and then dragged them through the urinal.  Not only is this disgusting, it is disturbing.  Just so you know, Hayden knows I am writing about this – his thoughts – “it’s ok Mum, it might help other people, and it might mean that some bullies stop”.  See what I mean.  This kid, amazing.

After he found this, he went out to his teacher.  He explained what had happened.  She proceeded to hand him a plastic bag and tell him to get them out.  He got them out, barehanded, without anything than water to wash his hand.  A kind teacher gave him some ‘wash and borrow’ clothes so he could wear something home.  At no point was I called.  I don’t want to focus on the situation, but rather the flow on effects.

Hayden is left wondering why they singled him out.  The kid shares everything, gives up his lunch if someone forgets theirs, and is kind to everyone.  He might talk to much in class some days, but he is 7 and he is not ‘naughty’.  Hayden is so upset.  So much so that he does not want to go to school tomorrow as he is so embarrassed by what happened.  We have been talking all afternoon about this.  And I have told him so many times how special, wonderful and amazing he is.  And how I am so sorry this happened.  And how it is not right, and not fair.  He is probably more ok about the situation than I am to be honest.

What sticks with me is, bullying is out there.  There are always ‘plans’ or methods to keep it at bay, or to try and deter it. But it always lingers, like a bad smell.  He has been bullied a few times this year, and it is so confronting the levels of violence and also the words kids use.  I doubt I am anywhere near effective enough as a parent trying to explain to Hayden why it happens.  He gets that people do it, and he often just tells them to go away.  He sticks up for his friends, and usually plays near a teacher if the bigger well known bullies are around.  He figures it is part of school.  It is just abhorrent.  I was bullied at school.  And right now, today particularly, I can feel that fear and sadness wash over me.  I was picked on for being tall, fat (despite being incredibly fit and playing basketball for QLD) and one of the few fist fights I have ever been in was for sticking up for a friend.   I was called all sorts of names and no matter what anyone says, you always remember it.  I don’t want Hayden to have to start from this age.  Seriously, what do bullies get out of degrading anyone continually?

The psychological warfare that is school is a playground of caustic comments, pushing, punching and verbal slaps is out there, and apparently from grade 2.   I would have thought grade 2 was a little too early, but judging from this year, it sadly is not.  How do you arm your child for a further 10 years of school and bullying?  How can an educational system be so inherently flawed that bullying to this level is accepted?

We have a national RUOK day – but we should *all* do more about bullying.  I bet almost everyone has a bullying story.  Before they were cool, before they lost 10kg.  All of those things.  Whatever.  It is time to stop!  If you are a parent, a sibling, an aunt, an uncle, anyone who knows anyone who is in school – take the time to ask them about their day.  Ask about their interactions, and friends.  Do they bully other kids?  STOP it now – because maybe you can, and maybe you can make a difference!  Talk about how their behaviour affects others.  Look at their actions.  Try and find resolutions, solutions, anything.  Talk about it full stop.  Right now, I am trying to talk sense about how things like this can happen.  And at the same time balance my discussion to be appropriate for a 7 year old.
The mother in me is beyond livid.  I am seething.  Beyond the ‘how could this happen’ to ‘why did this happen’.  I mean really – why?  What drives a child to urinate on another childs clothes.  Why would anyone think this was ok?  Why do people feel the need to behave like this?   In workplaces, schools, families, there is always a bully.  I cannot fight all of my kids battles for them – all I can do is what I am doing, teaching them to respect everyone, be kind and courteous.  I can’t teach them to fight.  I can teach them to verbally tell someone to go away.  But that all seems so pointless when things like this happen.  I feel like I am failing as a mother because I don’t know how to make kids stop doing stuff like this! So again, I implore you all, ask, question and find out about school life for anyone you know.  It might help someone who is being bullied or it might even show you that they are bullying.  Neither is a nice situation.  Having never sat on the bully side of the fence, I can offer no insight into what it is like to bully someone.  Having been bullied, and having a son that now is, I can tell you, it is far from pleasant and about a million times worse when it is your child.

Bullying is not cool.  Not ever.

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51 Comments

  • Reply Lauren 1st December 2014 at 17:39

    Ali, this is just dreadful. No child deserves to be treated that way. Hayden is an amazing young man who is strong, resilient and brave (just like his mum) but he didn’t deserve this. No way. No how. I am so worried for the boy that did this to Hayden – what is happening in his head, in his home, in his life. What disappoints me more than words is the response of the teach and the lack of resolution/discipline/support. I hope that you take this further with the school. I am sure that the QLD government would have a set of bullying prevention guidelines that clearly have been overlooked by the school. Sending you and H lots and lots of love and light. Lauren, xxx

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 09:32

      Hey Lovely 🙂 Thank you so much for your very apt insight. It is horrible but you have made a great point – what is happening to that child to do this? I am going up today to sort this out with the Principal hopefully. They are in meetings currently. There are bullying prevention guidelines but sadly they have not been stuck too here. Thank you again mate – you rock xx

      • Reply Tomlef 1st August 2017 at 20:10

        I go to school with Hayden and I will ask him if he wants to hang

        • Reply TOMLEF 2nd August 2017 at 20:41

          Hayden if you want to hang out when I’m not at. School get ark on your PCI and I can friend you and play

          • Ali 3rd August 2017 at 08:43

            Hey Tom, this is Hayden’s mum, I will let him know 🙂 Thanks for your awesome comments!

    • Reply TOMLEF 2nd August 2017 at 20:42

      Hayden get ark and you and me can hang out with each other and be buds, ohh and sorry about the hard stuff you’ve been throw.

  • Reply Beth 1st December 2014 at 17:46

    Gee Ali that’s awful. I have no words of wisdom though of what to do. Hayden is probably today’s target in the mind of the bully if for no other reason than he felt like it. Very disturbing that a 7 year old bully urinates on someone’s clothes. That is going a step further. Hang in there Ali. Hayden is a smart boy and has a great mind and soul. He also has you xoxox

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 09:33

      Thanks gorgeous 🙂 Wonderful people like you leaving comments like this; and more importantly there for me mean the world. Thanks mate xxoo

  • Reply Lisa Marie 1st December 2014 at 19:19

    Oh Ali,

    I’m so sorry your little boy has been bullied. It is just awful. It is saddening and it is sickening.
    I have a close friend who tells me this starts in kindy – She has experienced it with her own little one. She says that the parents of the bullies are just as bad and no nothing to pick up their disgusting behaviour.

    Parents have a lot to answer for if their child is the Bully –

    My little guy is only 3 but has already experienced name calling from the big boys and has even been spat on. It is absolutely appalling and I have had words with the teachers who also need to be on top of it.

    I wish there was a way to stop this, to shield the pain. But having been bullied- you are best equipped to help him deal with this. ( i was also bullied – for no reason!!)

    wishing you all the best x

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 09:35

      Hey Lisa Marie. Thanks so much for your comment. I am shocked that it is happening in Kindy. Wow. That blows my mind. I have to agree that the parents of the bullies I have encountered have been not at all interested or concerned and probably were bullies themselves. Which is sad. I am so sorry about your little guy. That is appalling. What do they get out of name calling? Spitting? That is just filthy. Sounds like this happens to so many people and for no reason. It is insane. I hope things look up for your little fella.

  • Reply Kim 1st December 2014 at 19:49

    Ali,
    Let he livid mother go to the Principal father school, even their boss if no satisfactory answers, and ask those unanswered questions. Just the fact that he had to get his own clothes out without gloves etc is not on. He was not supported and you need to know why.
    I would be livid too.
    You have one beautiful boy there.

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 09:37

      Thanks Kim. I am trying to keep it cool and not yell at the Principal as it is not her fault entirely. It is so difficult when they are busy all the time and don’t give you the time (still waiting…). I just feel terrible – Hayden was sitting at breakfast this morning and said “do you think they picked me because I like dinosaurs and noone else does?”. That broke my heart 🙁

  • Reply Kim 1st December 2014 at 19:50

    Father?? Meant of the

  • Reply Mel Darcy 1st December 2014 at 19:57

    Ali, I have no words of advice and nothing to say to make you or Hayden feel any better about the situation. All I can do is send you both the biggest hugs that I can!!!!!

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 09:38

      Thanks Mel – means heaps! Much love x

  • Reply Kellie Winnell 1st December 2014 at 19:59

    Ali I first of all want to come and give you a big hug and let you know that you are an amazing person and more than that, a wonderful mother. I read your blog, sometimes I read a blog post twice. Your love for your children shines through in every blog post. So don’t you for one second longer beat yourself up.

    Hayden sounds like the most caring and strapping young lad. I’ve read about him here and you are going to have one heck of a young man on your hands, his wife I’m sure will one day thank you.

    I’m really concerned about the teachers reactions, or lack of.

    Something happened at my girls school with one of my girls, and the principal rang me to let me know that while she was ok this and this happened and she’d rang the other kids parents as well, so they could discuss his actions. THAT is what the school should had done for you, and I honestly don’t understand why they hadn’t. You could had bought his clothes for him, taken him home if he wanted? Maybe you should bring this to their attention?

    The boy, god knows why he did this? Maybe tomorrow it will be someone else? I think for him to think it’s something you do, there is something just not right? At home maybe, school? Sometimes a bully is someone that also gets picked on. STILL absolutely NO excuse for his behavior.

    You let Hayden know that this lady right here, thinks he’s an amazing kid!

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 09:39

      Thanks Kellie. Your lovely kind words mean so much mate – I hope to sort it out so that no other child has to have this happen to them, it is horrible! I don’t know why the school didn’t just ring me – hopefully I will find this out today.
      He is pretty darn awesome – and I will tell him you said so as well! Thanks mate, love and sunshine A x

  • Reply Gordy's sister 1st December 2014 at 21:23

    Oh Al. I’m so sorry this has happened. I hate to say it but right at this moment I am very ashamed to be in the same profession as someone who has just brushed this off so lightly. I hope more action is being taken. I would want to find out if the other boy’s parents have been notified. That seriously is shocking. Is there anything I can do or anyone you would like me to contact on your behalf. For this behaviour there are steps that need to be taken immediately and definitely straight from the top. Malicious behaviour at school is a definite reason for further action. This is that time. I talk to my boys everyday about how their days are and I find out loads. I also have a lot of background information that is confidential that gives many teachers heads up about children. A good support staff and behaviour team at school should have addressed this boy’s actions with Hayden, the other boy and both parents immediately. Hayden is a beautiful boy and he would already know that the other child’s behaviour is not acceptable. He is bright enough to see it is a reflection of the other child’s character. I just feel gutted for you both that it has hurt you and just want to come and give you a big hug. Tell him that I think he is a Rock Star. Hugs my beautiful friend.

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 09:42

      Oh Tina – don’t feel bad – or ashamed. You are and AMAZING teacher and every child that is lucky enough to have you as a teacher is set for the world with a little sparkle and shine – because of YOU! To my knowledge, the boy has not been identified, and neither myself or any other parents have been notified – I notified the school as his teacher did not contact me or report it. I am waiting now to go up and speak with the Principal or Deputy – they are both in meetings so I am hoping it is not long.
      I have told him you said he was a rock star – that got a big smile (and “like the Fooey’s mum?”) Thanks gorgeous – really. Much love x

  • Reply Sue Lindwall 1st December 2014 at 23:33

    Ali.Im very upset about the teacher telling him to get his clothes out himself.That is absolutely appaulling.Very sad that the school didn’t follow through with a phone all to you.Thankfully there was one kinder teacher but no phone call is not good enough.ID be livid too.A message to Hayden:We have all watched you grow through your mums chats online.You are an amazing little man and you should never have to have these things happen to you.It happened because the person who did this to you is not clever,kind,and funny.It happened not because of something you did.It happened because THEY are not nice people?Your mum was picked on for being tall.I was picked on for being too short.This doesn’t make it right Hayden but I want you to know you are not alone……We all think you are a star……Sue

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 09:43

      Thanks mate – I hope to get some answers today. It is appalling. Poor kid was sitting at breakfast and said ‘do you think they picked me because I am the only one that likes dinosaurs?” That broke my heart! Hope you are well mate 🙂

  • Reply Kate 2nd December 2014 at 10:57

    Oh Ali, This is really distressing. I’d suggest setting up a time to meet with his teacher to have a chat about what happened, what the impact has been and to see if there have been other episodes. At the very least they can then keep an eye out both on your son and on the boy who did it to him to see if there are problems. I’ve been in both situations, my son is 4 and for a while I was really distressed that he was being a bully as he was acting out, hitting kids at childcare and biting despite everything we could do. We subsequently found out that he couldn’t hear speech with any background noise so was not responding to normal social cues / commands and was exceptionally frustrated (none of which was evident at home where the noise was less) and things have since improved, although socially he is still catching up so sometimes there may be something going on in that child’s life that the teachers need to be looking out for as well. In my son’s kinder class, I have witnessed him being punched really hard in the stomach, and kicked by another child, completely unprovoked and unwitnessed by the teacher (with a ratio of about 1:10 and I know ratios are a lot higher in school classes), so there is potentially more happening that isn’t seen, which is why it is so key to let the teachers know as your son did so they can keep an eye out, and keeping that open dialogue that it isn’t “telling tales” when you let teachers or parents know what has happened to you. Tell Hayden that dinosaurs are cool, and he will find his tribe of people that appreciate him – he sounds like a lovely child and you are doing a great job. There are some good resources for parents and teachers at http://www.bullyingnoway.gov.au/teachers/supporting-students/index.html if the teacher isn’t experienced in managing the situation or things keep happening. Best of luck!

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 15:34

      Hi Kate – thank you for your comment 🙂
      Wow, your poor little fella – must of been such a relief to see that there was a reason! Wow, punching at KINDER! That is insane. I have come to realise in the last day that bullying is so incredibly common. That saddens me. The extent and stories I have heard have been so sad. I will tell Hayden dinosaurs are cool from you 🙂 I hope that he will have a lovely tribe of mates that will be his friend for who he is 🙂 Thanks for the website – I will be checking it out again now! Again – thank you so very much for your kind words, advice and help, I appreciate it, and I know Hayden will also 🙂

  • Reply Tamileigh Chirgwin 2nd December 2014 at 18:35

    I read this today and thought why and how does this happen to one child and not another? I have two boys aged 10 and 7. The 10 year old is very smart, confident and social – at times I believe he is part of the bullying group at school. (Believe having a kid this nature can be very hard at times too). My 7 year old struggles at school, tries desperately to make friends and fit in although he is not a shy boy. Only recently he came home and told me he had something very important to say, he had been bullied. A story that just wanted to make you cry and wrap him up like a baby… but you can’t.
    This evening after tea I told them Hayden’s story. They both felt so bad for Hayden and had looks of sorrow. I told them I felt for Hayden as well, but I especially felt for his Mum because as Mums we have no idea why children do this to each other. I ask them could they help me understand. My 10 year old’s reply was popularity. He is not popular. I asked how does he become popular. He said hang around the popular kid. My 7 year olds reply was that is why he is bullied. He just doesn’t like the popular kids. After this conversation it made me wonder who is the leader and confident one out of my 10 and 7 year old. I felt although the 7 year is suffering now, he knows who he is and where he wants to be. He also knows how to work extremely hard for results. The 10 year old is the one who I now worry about… so confident yet it seems following a group with a ring leader. What baffles me is how they define popularity. Lets hope our Cherubs grow from boys to fine men knowing they can always talk to us.

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 20:37

      Hi Tamileigh. WOW. Thank you for your kind comments. I am blown away by your summation – you are right – the 7 year old is having it rough but knows where he should be. I think Hayden is exactly the same as your boy in that he would rather not be popular but be ‘a good kid’. I hope things get better for your little fella. Bullying is horrible – but you got it in one when you said it is even more difficult for Mums! I feel helpless and powerless at times.
      Thank you for taking the time to leave this comment. I am really appreciative of your comment. It makes me realise that we are all probably fighting the same battles every day.
      I hope your boys grow and learn together – the ideal is probably in the middle ground of what they both ‘do’.

  • Reply Ant 2nd December 2014 at 19:59

    Dear Hayden,

    Mum told us about the crap happening at swimming, and I can feel it from here.

    I don’t know much about bullying, but I know a bit about people. And I remember what it was like to be a kid. And be on the receiving end of some of the crap kids can dish out.

    Truth be told, I can also remember about dishing out crap to other kids myself.

    So I only have a little bit to say.

    I’m sorry you went through that. It happens a lot, more than it should.

    Here is what I think.

    It helps to know why people do horrible things to other people. I think it is because they are driven by thoughts and emotions they haven’t mastered in themselves. They are driven by ‘demons’ and the demons’ names are doubt, fear and ignorance.

    People hurt others because they doubt themselves. They don’t know who they really are and they try and make themselves into something powerful and big. They try and become a monster, because they believe in monsters.

    People hurt others because they fear. They are scared. Scared of what people think of them. Scared of looking small. Scared of being invisible. Scared of people seeing them as weak. Scared of people seeing how scared they really are. And so they choose a really crap way of fighting fear – they pretend to be something they are not. They think that making someone else fear, they won’t be so afraid themselves.

    And really, people try and hurt people because they are ignorant. They don’t know who they are. They don’t know how the world actually is. They think that by pushing someone down it lifts themselves up.

    The really sad thing is, they are so wrong. The monster they are building isn’t a real thing, it is just a shadow. The shadow is acting big and scary, but all a shadow is a bit of darkness. It isn’t real. They are believing in something that is just pretend.

    But my dear Hayden, you are really lucky. Coz you know more than them. You are smart, strong and loved. You know that shadows are not real. You know that monsters are just confused little boys who are trying to be something that doesn’t even exist – shadow monsters. You know that the shadow monster is just full of doubt and fear. And when you know someone is driven by fear, they can’t beat you. Because courage always beats shadows.

    Be strong and happy, because you are an amazing guy whose intelligence and courage is a billion times brighter than shadows.

    Heaps of love

    Uncle Ant

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 20:25

      Thanks uncle ant for that from hayden. Your theory is actually probably true. It was a pretty long theory but i understood what you meant.
      Love from hayden

      • Reply Ant 2nd December 2014 at 20:27

        Well ask your Dad – I could have a short theory!

    • Reply Ali 2nd December 2014 at 20:29

      Oh Ant! I was too busy crying. Thank you. Thank you so very much. Hayden responded above. He thinks the world of you and this ‘theory’ left him with a great deal of understanding and insight.
      You’ve summed it up beautifully. It got Hayden back onto his theory on dementors from Harry Potter – its not their fault they take away all the happiness, they were probably happy before they got made into dementors. He reckons you can’t not like something that doesn’t know any better.
      He sees the world in a different way. Thankyou for this Oracle. Love you x

  • Reply Amanda W 2nd December 2014 at 21:54

    Oh Ali, this is terrible, sad, makes me angry etc etc. Everything you say is correct except for one thing. In NO WAY are you failing as a mother. The fact that you have spoken to your beautiful boy and tried to explain things instead of going and finding this kid and retaliating shows what a wonderful, caring mother you are.
    And you have written this brilliantly. You should consider sending it into a website like mammamia as I think it will help a LOT of other mums out there facing, unfortunately, similar situations.
    Sending you cyber hugs for you and Hayden.
    Amanda

    • Reply Ali 3rd December 2014 at 09:46

      Hi Amanda 🙂 Thank you – I really appreciate your comments and lovely words. I guess it is always nice to hear I am not failing! I am actually really overwhelmed by how many people have had bullying occur so frequently and so early in kids lives. I had not thought of submitting my writing anywhere to be honest – I might try! If it helps anyone else I would be happy and I know Hayden would also.

  • Reply Arjuna 3rd December 2014 at 00:08

    Dear Hayden Moloney.
    You do not know me well but I have watched you grow up since you were a speck! And I know just how cool your mum and dad are because I am an excellent judge of characters 😉
    Let me use a dinosaur metaphor because dinosaurs are seriously cool! Youre just ine of the few people smart enough to realise this fact. Apologies that some of the names of the dinosaurs come from my memory and it has been about 3 x your age in years since I learned about them .. Also I apologise if I go on and on and on. I tend to talk a lot 😉
    Ok so a small Apatosaurus who gets teased about being small (or teased just because someone was bored who knows), is feeling low and worthless. Along comes a Stegasaurus with cool spikes and plates and popularity because he is smart and funny and knows a lot of stuff. Now the Apatosaurus thinks, ‘if i tease that guy who is cool then maybe that makes me even cooler right?’
    (This is of course seriously not true but I never said he was a very smart Apatosaurus did I ? ). So he waits till the stegasaurus takes off his shirt and throws it in a pile of poop that some passing Ankylosaurus had just dropped right nearby. ‘ha ha! – look how cool I am because I made that guy all embaressed’.
    And yes the Stegasaurus felt very embaressed because he was shocked at what happened to his shirt. The Apatosaurus felt good for a little while but on the way home he thought about what he had done. He stopped smiling and started to feel embaressed. ‘People do bad things to me so its ok…. But that guy never hurt me’.
    He could not say sorry and was not even sure what he could say to the Stegasaurus.
    The Stegasaurus was so sad. He did not know why it happened.
    The Stegasaurus’ mum (whom everybody loved because well, she was terrific, who we will refer to as Mrs Bob), was horrified! How could this happen to my son who is like ridiculously cool and also friendly. But there was no real answer . Sometimes dinosaurs do stupid stuff to each other and its not always for a reason. Stegaraurus Jnr eventually realised he could not please everyone. He was at least happy that of the 100 dinosaurs he knew 99 of them knew he was pretty awesome. He decided that that other guy, the Apatosaurus must just have a lot of problems. ‘Maybe he will realise how cool I am one day’
    ‘Well until he does I will just keep doing things the same because That is the real me and I know I am as cool as … Something really really cool even!’ .

    Eek!
    I told you I talk a lot buddy!
    Sometimes it takes a strong cool dinosaur to not lash out with his spikey Stegasaurus tail, but to just shake it off and keep on being legendary. Its a tough job Hayden Moloney but I reckon if anyone can do it , the son of Ali Ruiz and Jason Moloney totally can.
    I miss your parents and cannot wait to see you all soon.
    Good luck.
    I never bullied kids but because one teacher was very nasty to me I bullied some other teachers. Eventually I bullied a really good teacher and when he was still nice to me eventually became his friend and he inspired me to try every day to make every person i meet feel a little better and never feel worse because of me. It was a very important lesson and I am forever sorry I was nasty to some teachers back then.
    Ok i better stop – see lots of words!
    Take care young man. You are awesome , I just hope that Apatosaurus one day realises it. He might not – who knows humans are weirder than dinosaurs!

    Sincerely
    Arjuna ;). Oox

    • Reply Ali 3rd December 2014 at 09:40

      Dear Uncle Arj, Thank you for posting that letter about the bully that did that to me. I like how you based your letter on two dinosaurs species – apatosauras and stegosaurus. Thank you very much. Love from Hayden.

    • Reply Ali 3rd December 2014 at 09:41

      Lady – you can stay. Love you so much – miss you too. Thank you, now this was altruistic x

  • Reply Marissa crompton 3rd December 2014 at 07:18

    hi Ali
    I saw this post through a mutual Facebook friend and it made me feel so sad. Your little man sounds like such a sweety and to be made to get his own clothes out of the urinal after this horrible act is do disgusting. As a mum it breaks your heart that these things happen and were not there to protect our little ones. Hope the school handle it better so your little man knows the behaviour is soooo not acceptable

    • Reply Ali 3rd December 2014 at 09:42

      Hi Marissa – thank you for your kind words. It is really hard knowing that I could not protect him! The school is still ‘handling’ it, I am not sure that Hayden is going to feel any better about it though. Thanks again – I appreciate your lovely thoughts 🙂

  • Reply Sim 3rd December 2014 at 22:09

    Hi Ali, also saw your post via a fb friend. Just wanted to send love and support to you and your boy. He sounds amazingly mature and I hope he realises this is a problem with the bully and not with him.
    It’s so hard to understand someone of any age, let alone one so young, doing such a horrendous act. It’s frightening. The behaviour suggests something seriously damaging is going on in the mind of the perpetrator and you can only hope it will be investigated and help provided quickly. Otherwise things could progress further down the road to violence and someone else will get hurt, perhaps physically next time, perhaps someone not as strong as your son or someone without the support he has from those around him.
    I hope there will be a whole of school response to this for your sake and the sakes of other students too. The kids need to be given tools to be clear on what’s ok and what’s not and to not just keep themselves safe, but to be able to challenge the behaviour when they see it and support one another without being afraid to rock the boat.
    Bullying is a current, priority issue in the workplace and businesses are recommended to implement policies around this. It sounds like the same prioritising needs to be rolled out in our schools. Too much talk, not enough real action.
    And also seems teachers may need some information on hygiene and health and safety practices for their students!
    Lots of hugs to Hayden and as a mum to a7 yr old boy myself lots of hugs to you too and while my kids and I have talked about bullying lots before, I will raise the points you made with my kids in the morning. A timely reminder that we should start with our own kids and make sure they don’t become the bullies themselves.

    • Reply Ali 4th December 2014 at 06:01

      Hi Sim 🙂 Thank you so much for your kind comments – I really appreciate them.
      You have raised such pertinent and insightful comments – you are right about how much bullying occurs and how often, we don’t do much about it – or there is not much awareness. I look at workplaces I have been in and see how much, in some cases, even I was bullied – or other members of staff for one reason or another. I don’t think I did much either as it was not worth it.
      You have said it perfectly – bullying is a current priority issue! And we do need to take action – for everyone not just ourselves.
      I still don’t know what would bring a child to do something like this – and even if I did I don’t think it would be overly helpful. Hayden is sad, and understandably. It has been so reassuring for him seeing the responses here that he has done nothing wrong – he feels as though sometimes he has which is saddening 🙁
      Thank you again so very much Sim, I really appreciate your comments – and I know Hayden does also.

  • Reply テレビ レコーダー プロジェクター 4th December 2014 at 01:30

    Way cool! Some very valid points! I appreciate you writing this write-up plus
    the rest of the website is also very good.

    • Reply Ali 10th December 2014 at 16:07

      Thank you so much 🙂

  • Reply Sim 4th December 2014 at 06:58

    Hi Ali, my hubby gave me a different perspective on this this morning and I wanted to share. He said as parents we leap on the urine part as the big issue and like I did worry it’s a psychological issue with the child. He reminded me that boys brains don’t work like adults, we associated urinating on something or someone with denigration, with acts we’ve seen in the news. He said boys do stupid things without thinking of the consequences and the more concerning element is the fact that one child’s clothes were targeted and that’s the Main thing to be addressed. He was concerned about what happened next (what did the school do?) and felt that (having been a boy who did stupid, not bullying, things but stupid – I’ve heard some) what needs to happen is for the child or children who did this to feel a sense of shame, to help them realise the consequences of their actions – something some young boys just don’t do automatically. He suggested a public apology initiated by the school, perhaps just in front of the class. He suggested the parents need to enforce their own punishments at home. Also as a way to help the child/children feel remorse and encourage healing I guess, a good idea may be to have the boys as work partners in class – carefully monitored of course – and perhaps encourage play dates outside of school with feedback to the school – as a kind of required remedial action. This may not work in every situation but it was interesting to hear his thoughts as a boy who was into crazy stupid things and is the father of boys thinking about how he would deal with it if our 7 year old was the bully. Hope the school gets on top of this quickly. All the best.

    • Reply Ali 4th December 2014 at 16:40

      What a great comment to read – thank you and thank your hubby! I never actually looked at it like that and you are right. We are back at the school tomorrow (Hayden’s first day back) so we will see what happens and how it is handled for him in class. We have not really had an apology as such, more a ‘how can we make you happy’ approach for Hayden, which does not make much sense to me. Thank you so very much Simone – I really appreciate it.

  • Reply Billie-Jean Beveridge 5th December 2014 at 07:01

    Oh such a horrible thing to have done, I had tears in my eyes as I read it. Bullying is such an awful thing to have anyone subjected to and believe me it starts earlier than year 2. The things I have seen and heard leave you gobsmacked and I don’t know how it happens. Schools seem to always take a back seat and it gets me wondering why more is not done. We are leaving our beautiful little wonders in the hands of these people and yet they do not protect. I have even had one principle discuss bullying as although not accepted but one that teaches resilience. How about we single out these evil little trolls and get behind the route of it before it leads to something far worse than anyone wants to imagine. Anyway I could go on and on about bullying and how we all need to take a stand!! I pray your little man and you and your family are okay. Sending positive good vibes your way. Take care xx

    • Reply Ali 5th December 2014 at 09:39

      Thanks Billy-Jean I really appreciate your comments 🙂 It is sad to read that you have also witnessed things that are happening. These poor kids. It does not teach resilience it teaches apathy if no one intervenes and helps, or even listens. There is sadly not many lessons that are worth teaching Hayden in this case – other than he has done NOTHING wrong. I applaud your passion about anti-bullying – I share it, and I hope that we can all take little steps to make change!

  • Reply Rachael Linedale 5th December 2014 at 08:30

    Oh Ali, I am sorry you’re all going through this. Yes its pretty common but always shocking. My husband was systematically bullied for years and it has left an indelible mark. What he remembers most is that his parents did not intervene. Now this was 50 years ago and you’d think we’d all have evolved a bit by now but from this anecdote it doesn’t appear so. From all the reflection you’re doing and help you’re seeking it seems you’ll have it nailed soon. I would suggest to make it personal …for the principal; the teacher (who sounds like she/he blew it off!!!!) the parents of the kid and the perpetrator of the violence. Wouldn’t it be great if you could get some alone time with the boy? Not to rough him up ….just to meet him properly and make a connection. He may not even remember the incident but its not unreasonable for him to be made aware (gently) of the ramifications. This could be the beginning of making an accountable citizen of him. Its not too late for this boy but if this nasty transaction is not treated as the serious rights infringement that it is, then it will recur. It will recur and others will copy. I am really sorry you’re dealing with this, but Heyden will feel loved and IMPORTANT because you are (dealing with it). He can reflect on this when he delivers his first speech as Prime Minister. Go well, Sister, Rach x

    • Reply Ali 5th December 2014 at 09:44

      Hey Rach! Thanks lovely 🙂 I am sorry your husband got bullied – it is so incredibly unnecessary – and sadly we have not evolved much at all.
      I would love time alone with the boy – not to yell but to let him know exactly what the outcomes for Hayden were from his actions. You have aptly described it – connecting and holding accountable is the way to move forward here. I agree whole-heartedly with this!
      Hayden went back to school today – so I am proud of his courage and his ability to stand tall. I don’t know what the future holds for him – but I hope that he can feel safe and be able to spread his own unique wings!

  • Reply Jane Allen 8th December 2014 at 10:12

    Hi Ali,
    Wow, your story took me back to when my girls were at school and what they endured.
    What I would love to know is did the school actually speak with the bully and more importantly to his parents? I do hope so.
    Hayden will be fine, thanks to the love and support of his family.

    • Reply Ali 8th December 2014 at 16:46

      Thanks Jane. I don’t think the kid/s have been spoken to as yet as they have not found out which one did it. Hayden went back to school and has done an amazing job through it all. I am so sorry your girls had to go through horrible situations as well. It is heartbreaking as mum!

  • Reply Jodie | Polka Dot Creative 8th December 2014 at 10:37

    Oh my goodness. Your poor baby. I too had tears reading this. I was bullied for being small. Physically picked up and carried around, tickled, called names. My self confidence wasn’t great as a result. It took so much away from my school years and I beg every day that my children are not subjected to the same horror. So far so good. But as you say it can happen anywhere at anytime. We shelter our babies with a love filled home and restrict what they see and hear. All to protect them. As parents we try so hard to be vigilant and to make sure we know what is going on. But we can’t be with them all the time, i.e. when they are at school. Thank you for sharing yet another one of your stories that make us all feel like we are not alone. The world can be a tough place but spreading the word and experiences in our own lives might make is a little smaller and a little easier to change/help/live. Love you. xxx

    • Reply Ali 8th December 2014 at 16:48

      Oh Jodie! I look at you and am amazed with all that you do. I am so sorry you were picked on. Mongrels.
      You have it in one – we do try and be vigilant about protecting them and making sure they are not seeing things they shouldn’t. Hardest part of being a mum is not being able to take all the hurt away no matter how many bandaids or hugs you give. Thanks for your lovely comment. Love you too x o

  • Reply 5 Favourite Blog Posts – 2014 – Moloney Mayhem 31st December 2014 at 09:17

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