Maraea is being bullied at school.
There are three different girls that are targeting her.
Really, ladies? It starts this early? I figured I'd be dealing with this at some point in her life but not in pre-K for goodness sake.
Girl #1 - let's call her Zeze - has actually gotten physical with my daughter. She's punched her in the arm, tugged at her shirt and her hair, they get into screaming and pushing matches. Clearly two personalities that clash. The teachers are thankfully all over the situation and manage to keep them separated for the most part. To cover all our bases, we talked to the center director about it, who assured us that she was aware of it at her level as well, and that "the process" (of documenting behavioral incidents and issues) was already well underway. Unfortunately, it turns out that Zeze has something going on at home. The director was obviously not at liberty to elaborate, but it sounds like some drastic change and now Zeze is acting out at school. It's very sad and Zeze I'm so sorry but could you keep your paws off my kid please?
Girl #2 - let's call her Nene - has also gotten physical. The most recent incident happened yesterday. Maraea is the line leader this week, and apparently when you're standing in line you're not allowed to talk. So Nene was standing behind Maraea and was trying to tell her something, and Maraea was not responding (because she's not allowed to talk). Nene kept bothering Maraea, so Maraea covered her ears, which prompted lovely little Nene to punch Maraea in the throat. WTF IS WITH THESE GIRLS AND THEIR PUNCHING. FOR FUCK'S SAKE, I DON'T EVEN KNOW HOW TO PUNCH. Anyway. The teacher asked Maraea why she didn't just tell her that Nene was bothering her, and Maraea said "I'm not allowed to talk in line". My kid, following instructions. Grrr. There have been other physical incidents in the past too.
Girl #3 - let's call her Lele - has not gotten physical but is highly manipulative. Maybe she's not really bullying Maraea. But it's one of those - "Hey Maraea, I really like your ____________ maybe you should let me have it." And then Maraea comes home telling me that Lele now has all her stuffed animals at nap time and she needs to bring in more, and that Lele is stealing food from her lunch, and when Maraea tries to tell the teacher, Lele covers Maraea's mouth and holds her in her seat so she can't tell.
Real gems, all three of them.
I'm shocked that this started so early. And what's really frustrating is that I can't tell my daughter how to fight back against these little shits. She's not old enough to understand when it's ok to fight back and when it's not.
I tried telling her - with Zeze - to look her straight in the eye, and be very brave and strong, and say "Zeze, LEAVE ME ALONE." Loud enough so her teachers could hear. Sadly that turned into her taking that stance with me sometimes. She'll get an attitude with me, because she doesn't know that it's ok to stand up to Zeze but not to mommy like that.
She's been throwing ridiculous temper tantrums since this all started about 3-4 months ago. RI-DIC-U-LOUS. Like, thrashing around kicking and screaming, hitting and kicking me and Aaron, hyperventilating and throwing things. All over the smallest things - she doesn't want me to brush her hair. She doesn't want to go potty before bed. Last night, it was because she asked me "Mommy, was I on punishment last night?" and I answered her "Yes". She flew off the handle. And for what? The day was already over. It was in the past. She wasn't on punishment anymore. WTF?
Awesomely enough for me, so many of these tantrums have happened in my presence only. In the mornings, trying to get her out of the house for school. In the car on our way home. One day she sat in the backseat kicking and screaming at the top of her lungs for about 40 minutes straight - threw things at me from the backseat, reached up and around and smacked me on my chest. Such a treat. An awesome treat.
We're supposed to be past the temper tantrum stage.
We are trying to talk it out with her as much as we can. When we see her starting to head down that path, we try very gently to get her to talk about what might really be upsetting her. Sometimes she bites, sometimes she will furrow her brows at us and stomp her foot and be defiant.
If you ask me, it all ties back to this bullying shit.
You ever want to scare another kid that's fucking with your kid? Sometimes I daydream about going into that classroom and twisting Zeze's or Nene's or Lele's ears and getting on their level real close to their face and telling them to leave my kid the fuck alone. Haha. We all know that won't solve anything though.
When it first started we tried being very diplomatic about it. "If so-and-so doesn't play nice with you, maybe you should play with some other kids." Because you know how kids can take something you say and completely misinterpret it and then go into school and spit it back out. By now, I'm straight up telling her to stay away from those 3 girls. Don't play with them. They're not nice girls. The sad thing? She still thinks they are her friends. After Lele stole her Doritos from her lunch one day, Maraea said "Lele is still my best friend though." And I had to get real with her. I said "You think Lele is your best friend? Do friends steal from each other? Would you steal anything from Toni (her BFF that lives next door)? Friends don't hurt each other and friends don't steal from each other. Lele is not your friend at all."
I'm kind of at the point now where I'm ready to move her to a new school. There's a place by me that's much cheaper, it's closer, they have longer hours, Aaron could pick her up if needed, I would get my car rides to and from work back to myself again. Sure, she may run into some shit kids there too. But maybe not. I suppose you never know. I'm just tired of paying $285 a week and my kid is coming home and telling me about all these kids that pick on her and punch her and are mean to her.
Nothing makes me want to move to the middle of Oklahoma and homeschool her more than this.