One fine evening I get a call from my wife who informs me that the mother of my son’s bus mate had called politely accusing our son of shoving her kids finger in the fan in the bus.
While thankfully there was no real damage which had been done the mother had continued to berate the seriousness of what my son had done and how she and her husband had discussed it at length and since we were friends they were just highlighting it to us. We absolutely agreed with her what had happened should not have happened if it really was the case.
While we were obviously worried post the call. Our first reaction was wow was this our son she was talking about can’t be right. We know our baby and the level of mischief he can engage in my wife duly apologized to the mother and assured her that we would take it up with our son.
Our approach with him was not a confrontational approach but rather a casual conversation on the dinner table about his day and the journey back home in the bus. Luckily for us not sensing any danger he didn’t clamp up but happily told us the entire incident which had transpired in the bus. His friend on his own had decided to put his finger in the fan and test the results luckily for him the blades were of plastic and that too were running at a slow speed so not much damage was done
We double checked in a roundabout manner that could someone have put his finger in the fan but the story did not change. In fact on being questioned whether he unknowingly would have done such a think pat came the response why would he do such a silly and dangerous thing.
Convinced of his innocence we decided to investigate on our own on what had happened this was an obvious reaction to deal with the unnecessary accusation being levied against my son. So the approach decided upon was to check with the conductor and or with the maid in the bus, who would be privy to the shenanigans the boys did in the bus.
So I decided to go to bus stop next afternoon which also meant that I too would get a low down from the mother on the perceived actions of my son. I did apologize on his behalf but also hinted that the accusation could be wrong.
Sorry if I am boring you but too cut a long story short we stood vindicated in our belief the conductor and the maid both confirmed that the boy, on his own, had put his finger in the fan none of the other kids in the bus had encouraged or instigated him to do so. In fact they also said that he was one of the naughty ones in the bus etc.
Now I was smiling as the tables were turned and the flow of apologies had changed.
The point in all this being how do we tackle such situations without getting defensive. The boy obviously scared of the consequences of his actions decided to pass the buck on to the others in the bus but ended up being in the wrong. Similar fights / issue will continue to be a part of his growing up what is important is how do we deal with it?
Well it is not a panic situation yet but definitely has the making of a possible crisis.
Third year into primary school and I find an marked increase in the frequency and kind of pranks which go on in school class I and limited to boys in my case.
It started with one kid in class holding my sons neck from behind and kicking him in the back with his knee. Reminiscent of wrestling or cartoons? Thankfully this incident did not do serious damage but it did warrant a note and a call to the class teacher, the custodian and guardian of our inexperienced, dependent and vulnerable little ones in school.
Well a follow up discussion during the parents teachers meeting was met with a little bit of reluctance and by the way approach where- in we were told that these things happen. I agree that they will happen as the kids grow up nevertheless we were appraised off a new mechanism which was being tried out in class to curb such incidents.
Two weeks later a destroyed water bottle, followed by a broken school bag and an attempt to break the pencil box in two only set the alarm bells ringing.
Don’t get me wrong I want my son to be tough but I am just amazed at the number of incidents which keep happening in school and that too with an increasing frequency.
While I have counseled my little one what I am getting concerned about is the obvious inability of the class teacher in reigning in the young ones possibly because of lack of experience or maybe an approach that boys will be boys and this is part of growing up.
So while I do take up the matter with the class teacher once again the bigger question is what does one do in such situations how many incidents become a trend meriting an escalation or before serious damage is done. Will escalating the issue lead to consequences for both the teacher and my son maybe not immediately but eventually?
Advances in medical science means that today our kids have protection or immunity from a lot of diseases which also means a lot many more vaccinations and injections than what we got while growing up.
I am all in for giving the best (even if it means a little bit of temporary pain) to my young one but at times I am forced to evaluate the necessity of all the vaccines which are pouring into our country.
Case in point – the polio vaccination, while we have all grown up on drops and the government too is propagating drops, probably on account of the prohibitive cost of the vaccine – so is it necessary? I spoke to a number of moms and got a mixed response -those going to the hospital chains were oblivious of the number and kind of vaccines the kids were getting or at least were not questioning the need for some of the vaccines while those going to pediatricians had not necessarily heard about the vaccine.
Some of the parents I spoke with don’t even think twice or ask when we take the kids for vaccination but are in for a rude shock when the bill is generated so what does one do? I don’t know am not a Doctor all I am asking is for correct assistance and guidance from the specialist it’s not about the money or the pain just correct guidance.
Many kids are change resistant. If there is anyone in the www who has an answer to this humungous issue please share. It is a challenge which confronts us across all age groups and in some cases goes into adulthood as well J
Though usually after a certain age it always boils down to the freedom of choice and hence a closed chapter for most of us.
But for growing up adolescent children how do we imbibe the spirit of adventure and a willingness to try new things, be it food, reading, new sports, board games or making new friends.
Walking the talk and setting example works very effectively to a large extend…seeing me experiment with new cuisines usually results in my son trying them as well…this approach may not work across activities and will usually get stone walled for some attempts say reading books in my case.
Pundits would say that learning begins very early in life, in fact, in the womb. But practically, there is only that much one can do, isn’t it.
We faced the biggest challenge when my son started school. Most schools today have cafeterias that offer breakfast and lunch and so does my son’s.
However my wife’s victory dance on learning that there would be no more lunch boxes to pack was very short indeed as most of the items on the menu were those he refused eat L
So the routine which got set was that each month’s menu would be printed and post discussing the likes and dislikes the breakfast and lunch box was accordingly prepared on days when the menu was not to my son’s liking.
Year two was a lot better. I guess seeing his peers eat in school had a rub off effect. This year the number of instances of sending tiffin has drastically reduced but not without its challenges. He now prefers eating rice in school (as opposed to Indian bread) I guess it is easier for him to manage. In the interim we’ll keep trying to encourage him to try new things! Guess so J