Friday, October 3, 2008

The Loser

Daughter lost her bid for president of the student council in her elementary school. I talked about what happened on election day. I didn't know then that it would get worse.

Ten students, all fifth graders, ran for president. Three boys and seven girls were the candidates. Elementary school being elementary school, it's no surprise that a boy won. He's a good kid. I like him. I like his parents. I'm glad for him. But kids that age vote along gender lines, so I had warned Daughter that it was unlikely a girl would win.

Today, at recess, one of the other girl candidates told the girl candidate who is Daughter's "friend" that Daughter received only four votes. That would be four votes out of a possible 260. She said she knew because her mother had counted the votes and had told her. We will call this girl Ass Hole. We will call this girl The Loser.

It spread like wildfire, as rumors often do, with the girl Ass Hole told telling another "friend" of Daughter's. The two then told two other people. And then another person. And then another person, the boy "friend" of Daughter. He told Daughter. And Daughter cried. And she cried even more when all these "friends" who were surrounding her, anticipating her reaction, admitted to not voting for her. Not the boy. He voted for her. But those others, eager to see how sad Daughter would be to hear she only got four votes, had not.

It is a lie, of course. Although I don't know who counted the votes, the school's policy has always been that no parents who have children running for office are allowed to tally the votes. So I have to believe that Ass Hole's mother did not count them.

What's in it for Ass Hole? I'm not lying when I say Daughter is about the sweetest kid you could find. She has never had a run-in with Ass Hole. I can't even recall them being in the same class. They do not have a bad relationship. They have no relationship. Until now.

I discovered this all while picking up Daughter at school. I took her with me and tracked down the principal. Daughter explained what happened. The principal was angry. She coached Daughter on what to say when she confronted Ass Hole. She offered to have Daughter come to her Monday morning to practice what she would say.

Daughter doesn't get that the rumor has probably been repeated to most everyone in fifth grade, and likely to those in other grades. I'm not telling her that. Daughter is an innocent. Daughter is different in that she doesn't get many societal relationship bullshit. She is nice to everyone. She tells the truth. She does not pass on rumors. She expects others do the same.

So she's recovered fully, really. In this case, perhaps ignorance really is bliss. Because this knowledge I have about all this? It's ugly and it's painful and it's nearly unbearable.

I talked to the "friend" Ass Hole talked to. I talked to the "friend" that it was repeated to. I talked to the boy "friend". I also spoke to each of their parents. What I've described is pretty much the story these kids are sticking to. I have not spoken to Ass Hole. I have not spoken to Ass Hole's mother. This is the email I sent the principal earlier this evening:

I'd like to talk with you about this as soon as possible on Monday. (Hell, I'll talk over the phone about it if you want to call over the weekend.) I cannot tell you how distressed I am about this. I can't even articulate it. My inclination is to call Ass Hole's Mother right freakin' now. But, instead, I'm going to breathe in and out and in and out and in and out.

All right. I took three breaths. That girl has got to be disciplined mightily. I know of at least eight kids who "know" this. I suspect there are far more than that. This is a poor loser of a kid who for some inexplicable reason needs to make my daughter feel like a loser. And I want blood.

But I'm going to wait to talk to you. I promise.

So, yeah, I will wait. Until Monday morning. And then I want major league satisfaction. I'm not talking about some lame-ass apology from Ass Hole. Big f$#kin' deal. [Yeah, I curse. A lot. Sue me.] I want this rectified. I want the principal to talk about it to the entire grade, if not the school. She doesn't have to name names.

This is fifth grade, people. Fifth grade. Ass Hole is a loser who thinks she can make herself look better by making other people look bad. That's what I told Daughter. I also told Daughter we need to find her some different people to hang out with. Friends don't pull this shit. Not in fifth grade.


Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, "friends" (and this can be a real grey area in grade school) DO treat other friends this way-- especially when they believe they can get away with it and round up a few other "friends" to stand with them while it goes down. Bullying is starting earlier and earlier in schools -- second or third grade is not unheard of. My daughter was a victim of bullying by 4 other "friends" for the last two years of high school. This was something that she was dealing with for all of her junior year and most of her senior year -- she didn't want to involve me and make me think that she couldn't handle it herself. Depending on the day and the whim of the ring leader, she could either be in high spirits or sobbing uncontrollably in her locked room. The principal's advice was for my daughter to "develop a hard outer shell, because that's just the way life is." Well, that didn't go over well with me. I am not proud to say that I confronted the ring leader and 2 of her flunkies, but I did do just that with her mother present -- and I told her and her loser friends that if she did it again, that I would be back to give her more grief about it. Which I had to do once more before it finally died and went away. So I say congratulations to you -- standing down and letting your child flounder is not the way to go. You are doing the right thing. And I don't care if you swear. If your children being picked on doesn't make a person swear, I don't know what will. Sorry this is so windy, but it struck very close to my heart. Okay, I'm getting down off my soapbox now.......

CelloBella said...

What a nasty! I hate that.

You are right about the boy thing though. Lets face it at that age it is gender first... then who is most known second.

And because there were so many girls their vote was probably divided seven ways...

Your daughter sounds like the sort of girl I'd like to see in politics though - I hope she is not put off by the experience.


Giggles said...

You GO GIRL!!! Be that mother lion, nip it in the bud before this continues into high school when you have little to no control of it there!That little liar needs to be addressed reprimanded and warned! I think they need to teach more compassion in schools anyway. It's the only place some kids learn it. I think a green eyed monster reared it's ugly head. Thankfully Daughter is a bit naive....hopefully this will smooth over before grade eight! The unfortunate part is we friggin feel it in ours guts and carry it around until it's resolved....I can't even tell you how many sleepless nights I've had worrying about my daughters heavy heart! Wait until grade eleven ....oh that's fun....all the girls try to really bring each other down then! Hope you find some peace over this!

Hugs Giggles

Jillie Bean (AKA Bubba's Sis) said...

I hate, hate, hate Mean Girls. Why do there have to be Mean Girls? My daughter is like yours - sweet, honest, sincere. We haven't run into too many incidents like this - yet - and hopefully we won't. But oh, those girls can be so mean. You're doing exactly what you should do. Cussin' and all!

D... said...

Oh wow. This is horrible. I don't understand why girls have to act that way. Why their insecurities make them feel better by tearing down someone else. It's a plague.

My daughter is like yours. She's sweet and unaware. Things bother her for a minute and then she bounces back. But me? The things that happen to her stay with me. I love that you are taking charge and getting this taken care of. These Mean Girls Have.Got.To.Get.It. They Can.Not treat others in that manner.

Rumors are ugly, vile, and stick. I am so mad on ya'll's behalf. All of us with daughters will experience this at some point. I hate that.

I am so sorry. Stinks.

CP said...

Wow- I'm so glad Daughter has yet to realize the extent that this rumous has been circulated. Ass Hole is a mighty sophisticated mean girl, isn't she? I'm so sorry, Daughter!

Kelly O said...

*sputter sputter sputter* THE FREAKING NERVE!!! Mean girls suck. But how lucky your daughter is that you're on her side.


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