Monday, January 29, 2007

Anger Management: Part II

By the influx of comments, emails and phone calls that I received today, I see that you all are on the edge of your seat waiting to see what happened next. The long awaited moment has arrived....brew some coffee, grab a snack and let's begin:

As we began to drive home, the realization of what happened sunk deeper into our thoughts. I looked over at my husband and what do you think I saw there? It wasn't that stressed, wrinkled spot between his eyebrows that our little Kara has just like her Father, it was anger seething in his cheeks and in the atmosphere circling around him. Have you ever been around someone who is about ready to explode with anger? You don't even have to look at them, you can just feel it. That is what I found there, in the seat next to me.

All of the sudden, I realized that he had whipped the car around and headed back to church. All I could think was..oh, gosh, oh, gosh...and as a anti-conflict type person that I am, began to feel a bit queasy. As he parked the car, and stomped angrily inside, I knew that he wasn't going to listen to my advice and not yell. People were waving at me as I sat in the parking lot with my family and as I waved back with a stressed smile on my face, all I could think was, I am glad you are currently not inside. And then it occurred to me that there were indeed people inside. Who was hearing all the commotion and what were they thinking? As I slid down deeper in my seat and refused to continue making eye contact with people, I thought for sure, people would find our family's name on the blacklisted forum momentarily.

After he returned to the car, he informed me that he did, in fact, yell. He informed the parents that this had been going on long enough and that in no way, shape or form was it acceptable for our son to come home with teeth marks on his arm from their eight year old nor was it acceptable for their oldest son, who was suppose to be in the kids class as a teen helper, to be verbally tormenting our son every week. He also informed them that they needed to get their kids under control. That this kind of behavior needed to stop now.

What do you suppose was their response? Well here it is: We are sorry you feel that way. (Things not to say to an irate father.) Obviously, they were not getting it. I am sure they thought we were over-reacting. But what would you do if this had been going on for three years and it kept continuing? Would you just let it go, if speaking nicely to them didn't work? My main goal for the past years, was to address issues in a kind manner, one that I thought would honor God but as one of my dear friends brought to my attention and reminded me, Jesus was a bold speaker. He wasn't one to beat around the bush. He also had the maturity to be able to turn the other cheek because He knew that he had the power to take them out right then and there. But He was there for a higher die so that we could live.

Later that afternoon, my husband received a phone call from the father of the biter. The conversation went nowhere. But what was revealed was that he had interviewed other children to find out if anyone saw anything which now means more people are involved and also the question was asked of my husband... would you be willing to accept the fact that your son might be lying? Now let me ask you this, if your son came home with a bite mark on his arm, would that be evidence enough to believe him? Or would you assume that he had bit himself just for the fun of it?

When it comes to our children being physically and verbally abused to the point that they feel helpless to do anything about except to just take it, us as parents, especially the father needs to step in to defend their boys.

On a positive note, later that day, I noticed a definite difference in our sons attitude. He was smiling and was acting like we all do when our love tanks are filled up. I think by standing up and defending our son, in some way spoke beyond what any hug between my husband and my son could have ever said. For that, I am thankful.

As far as the rest of the drama, it surely will be interesting to see what plays out as I am involved in several different ministries at church....the same ones the other families are. It could be a bit awkward for a while. If you think about it, I wouldn't mind if you prayed that I would have the grace to face each situation as it comes.

Thank you all for your advice and for your prayers, we are thinking on many options and are going to pray that God directs our footsteps as we move forward. Hopefully, our son will be bully-free for a long time to come.

1 comment:

HISchild said...

Should I pick up my teeth now or wait for the third installment?

Have you addressed the issue directly with the pastor?

You have already begun the process outlined in Matthew 18:15-17. You have addressed privately with the parents and it continued to be a problem. You have now made it public with all the witnesses from yesterday. If it persists, it is now time to take it before the body of Christ (church). If the biter's parents don't listen, do as the Lord said. It is written in red to "treat him as an heathen man and a publican".

It may sound harsh but some people are so stuck on their own agendas that they forget God's. They CANNOT be used because they are not open.

In order to remain open, your family must do as the Lord did, "Forgive them Father for they know not what they do." Forgive and let go, move on. . .

Even if moving on means leaving.
After the above process is complete, PRAY . . . and be still. Listen for what the Master says.