From previous blog posts, you may know that my oldest has trichotillomania. Trich is an impulse control disorder (ICD) where an individual pulls out her hair, most of the time without even realizing she is doing it.
Both girls and boys suffer from this ICD, but it is more often found in girls.
If you'd like to learn more about Trich, go to The Trichotillomania Learning Center; you'll find great resources for sufferers, parents, educators and therapists there.
Many kids with trich get bullied by people that don't understand why they're bald, or have no eyelashes or eyebrows.
My girl is no exception.
Today, my girl and I were sharing about our days - mine at work, hers at school.
She told me that some kids at another table in the lunch room were throwing food at her, hitting her in the face with it and laughing about it.
My "momma bear" instincts immediately went to DEFCON 5, but I quickly reigned them in.
I asked her lots of questions:
- How long had this been going on? 3 times in the last week. It started with Cheetos and graduated to slimy celery today.
- Did she know who was doing it? She didn't actually see anyone throwing the food, but it was coming from the table she faced. When she looked at the kids at that table, they'd laugh, shrug and mouth, "What?"
(Can you picture it - Oh my word, it makes my blood boil).
- What are they're names? I won't share that here, because they're minors and I want the school to handle it for now.
- Have you told an adult at school about this? No. I was the first person she told.
We've had to deal with kids bullying her in the past, so I immediately wrote an email to her school asking for their assistance. Since it was after regular school hours, I didn't expect to hear anything before tomorrow.
Then, I did this:
I posted this on Facebook, and within a matter of minutes I had multiple people respond with love and compassion.
"She's such a sweet girl," and "We're praying a hedge of protection around her," and so many other expressions of support came bursting onto this thread.
Our closest friends and neighbors started popping up with "I'll have my (son,daughter) watch for this and have them stand up for her."
Next thing I knew, there was a loud knock on the front door. It was two of the kids on our block, both good friends to my girl, asking how they could help.
I was almost in tears with the overwhelming love and support. Then, my sweet friend messaged me, saying her son would take some of his friends and go sit with my girl and her friends during lunch.
Thank you doesn't even begin to cover how grateful I am to all of these compassionate friends.
I have a feeling that the school administration won't even need to step in. Positive peer pressure is an amazingly powerful tool.
I've also decided that if the inappropriate behavior continues, I'll head over to the school during lunchtime.
I'll give my girl a hug hello, then take my sack lunch over to the bully's table, quietly sit down and eat my lunch with them. I wouldn't have to say a word. What do you think?
What these bullies meant for harm, God turned into an enormous blessing for my girl. Now she knows how many people really love her and care about her.
The Dean of Students at my girl's middle school just called. The situation has been handled swiftly and appropriately.
There are some very remorseful kids that will be apologizing to my girl, so now we continue this life lesson by offering grace and forgiveness to those that hurt her.
Romans 8:28 (CEB)
28 We know that God works all things together for good for the ones who love God, for those who are called according to his purpose.
Genesis 50:19-20 (CEB)
19 But Joseph said to them, “Don’t be afraid. Am I God? 20 You planned something bad for me, but God produced something good from it, in order to save the lives of many people, just as he’s doing today.
Matthew 6:14-15 (CEB)
14 “If you forgive others their sins, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.15 But if you don’t forgive others, neither will your Father forgive your sins. (added with the update)
Were you ever bullied? Do you have a child that has been bullied? How did you handle it?
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