I don't often post about my kids. When I do its usually because I have good reason.
Over the weekend we held a birthday party for my daughter where they made bracelets, necklaces, and jewelry boxes. My boys were there too and didn't hesitate to jump right in and make some too. What I didn't realize at the time was that my oldest had made a necklace, bracelet, and jewelry box for a girl at school that he just so happens to have HAD a crush on. It was seriously the sweetest thing, the bracelet and necklace spelled her name in beads and the top of the jewelry box had her initials. It was thoughtful.
Now knowing the problems my son has had in school with being bullied this year alone, I had my reservations. I was worried he would get teased about giving this girl his sweet gift, but I've raised my kids to be who they are despite what others have to say about it. So I said nothing, knowing my son is strong, and he would ignore these things.
But when he came home and told me that he had a partly bad day I instantly thought of the box. He pulled it out of his pocket... what was left of it.
He gave this sweet gift to her, and later on he found it smashed with the jewelry discarded beside it.
My heart broke for him. Broke into a thousand pieces. And then I got mad. Really mad.
I immediately went to all three of my kids and sat them down and said to my them, "If any boy (or girl) ever goes through the effort and trouble of giving you a gift you had better accept it, and thank them because that is what a good person does, even if it comes from a kid that you do not like, even if it comes from a kid that may not be someone you hang out with, and even if you get teased about it. You accept that gift because it was generous, and sweet and kind and our world needs more of that."
My daughter immediately replied with she would never do what this girl did, and she said it was mean.
Now let me tell you, if you have a daughter or a son, please have a talk with them about this. Why anyone would think that smashing a gift is a good thing to do? I just cant fathom what might have been going through her mind. And I have to believe that her parents would be appalled at her behavior as I would be if my child had acted that way. I have to believe that she wasn't brave enough to stand up to the bullies and be grateful for that gift. I just have to.
I wanted to tell his story in the hopes that maybe it will save even one kid from having to go through it.
Make your children brave. Make them see how their actions affect other people. Teach them to be gracious for everything they are given. Teach them to be the person that be-friend the bullied kid. Because chances are that kid is pretty dang cool.