I’ve had a hard time writing lately. Because of the coronavirus situation both of my kids are home for who knows how long. It’s completely throwing me off. Adjusting to them home all the time. Learning how to homeschool for the time being. My brain is completely scrambled.
Yesterday a situation happened that no parent is really prepared for. We had some fundraiser stuff come in that needed to be delivered, so another parent and I met at the school with our kids to wait for people to pick their stuff up. The kids played while we waited. At one point a few other kids showed up and played too. They were teenage boys the same age as my son. We didn’t know they were there as we were busy. After we were done for the day and all packed up we picked up our kids from the playground and headed out. The other parent and her daughter headed home while I headed to make a few deliveries for parents that weren’t able to pick up their stuff.
Along the way to make deliveries my daughter told me the teen boys that were there were using bad words and weren’t being very nice. She then told me they were saying they wanted to kiss them and one boy told her he wanted to milk her. These boys are 14 and the girls that were there are 8 and 9 years old. Regardless of anyone’s age, this should have NEVER happened! I was absolutely fuming. Why didn’t my son pull the girls from the situation? Why didn’t he call me? Why did those boys think that was okay? So many things were going through my mind. I talked to both of my kids about how inappropriate and unacceptable that was. I talked with my son about how he should’ve grabbed the girls and left. Anything he could’ve done to stop or prevent this. He knew those boys from school and didn’t want to start any problems. Understandable. I don’t blame him for anything that happened.
While continuing to make our deliveries, my daughter spotted them and yelled that’s them. Without even thinking I stopped in the middle of the road as the rage filled me even more and began to yell at them. I used a few choice words I’m not particularly proud of, but I’m only human. They tried to deny it until they realized who my son was in the seat next to me. The look on their faces were full of regret and fear. They knew what they did and that it was wrong. I was fuming, shaking with rage about to get out of the car and beat them into oblivion. I had to get out of there.
When we arrived home I was still shaking. Still fuming. I couldn’t believe this happened. I couldn’t believe that I now had to talk to my 8 year old child about sexual harassment. A conversation she was not ready for and only confused her further. We talked about what sexual harassment is and what it means. We talked about what types of things were not appropriate. What to do when it happens. I began to cry as I apologized that she had to go through that. My heart was absolutely broken by this situation and the fact that these boys thought those were okay things to say to girls. Sweet innocent 8 and 9 year old girls. I felt so many emotions. Rage, sadness, fear, disgust.
As parents we spend a majority of our time raising our kids to go out into the world and conquer anything thrown at them. Trying to protect them from everything we can. Then something unexpected happens that forces them to grow up and take on things no one is ready for. As a parent you boss up and handle it to the best of your abilities, then you walk away and cry because you can’t protect them from everything. That’s a terrible feeling. I am absolutely disgusted and heart broken at the world we live in. A world where people think that behavior is okay or they don’t know the difference. A world where women and young girls are subjected to this everyday. We need a change. We need to be teaching our kids this is NOT okay ever. The way to change starts at home with recognizing and educating our youth on sexual harassment. It’s not just about my daughter, it’s about your sister, mother, grandma, best friend, aunt, or anyone else you can think of that deals with this kind of stuff. Be the change for a better tomorrow. We need it.