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To be pissed off after neighbour's son called DD "a dirty bitch mongrel?"

(186 Posts)
user1482840083 Wed 28-Dec-16 07:36:14

My late father was Afro-Caribbean and my mother is a Latina originally from the Dominican Republic. DH is also mixed (half black/half Chinese), so my two children (DS is 24 – DD is 14) are made up of a diverse background. My daughter is good friends with the girl next door – she’s also 14. DD’s friend has as a 16 yr old brother. Yesterday she went over to the neighbour’s house. Like her older brother who is now works as a videogame programmer, DD loves videogames. She played her friend’s brother on “FIFA” and beat him. He called her a “dirty bitch mongrel” in response to the loss.

To DD’s credit, she told me she just laughed at the boy’s frustration (she’s that kind of girl – finds humour in the face of adversity). Fortunately, DD’s friend’s mother was within earshot and reprimanded the boy. And she forced him to come to our house and apologise. I and DH accepted the apology as we know children do silly and sometimes unthoughtful things. But when I woke up this morning I was absolutely seething – angrier than I first was when I heard what happened.

ConvincingLiar Wed 28-Dec-16 07:37:58

Not surprised you're pissed off. I'd steer clear of him from now on.

ofudginghell Wed 28-Dec-16 07:40:49

What a little shit confused
I would make snide comments at him each time I saw him if it were me but I can be harbouring of grudges like that.
At least his parents reprimanded him and sent him over to apologise.
I would be mortified if my child said anything like that to another.

SabineUndine Wed 28-Dec-16 07:40:59

That's not only appalling, I'd be wondering where he got that sort of language from. I'd steer clear of the whole family tbh.

BakeOffBiscuits Wed 28-Dec-16 07:42:06

I think you should go back round today and ask to speak to him and his parents.

Tell him how angry you still are that he said something so racist and sexist and that he's lucky you haven't reported his comment to the police.

pklme Wed 28-Dec-16 07:43:08

So, that is a vile insult.
However, some people do seem to use vile words without intending vileness. I had a dear friend at uni who thought it was ok to call me bitch. Presumably the behaviour in the household is not racist or misogynistic or your DD would not be comfortable, the DM would not have told him off etc...

So it's a disgusting and inappropriate but somewhat random insult to express his disappointment at not winning? Which seems to be done among that age groups these days...

cantpickusername Wed 28-Dec-16 07:43:56

A 16 year old does not necessarily get his language from his parents.

The parents came over to apologise, I think that shows they're decent parents. But yes, is still be pissed of with the 16 year old!

hesterton Wed 28-Dec-16 07:51:46

I think as it sinks in, the insult's deeper racist implications spread their evil little tenticles.

Childish name-calling is one thing. Racist name-calling digs at the very roots of who we are - as individuals, as families, as communities.

I am not at all surprised you are very angry. Perhaps you feel on some level that this young adult (he isn't a child really) doesn't realise what he does when he used that kind of language and thinks those kind of thoughts. And that he has apologised as directed but still without understanding quite what he has done.

Perhaps this has unravelled a feeling that he is saying something he has heard himself before? And uncovered your inner tiger with regards to your precious girl.

I guess you have to find a way to go forward so that you can express your feelings and talk to your family about how you deal with people like your neighbour's son. And hope that he matures to grow a creeping sense of horror at what he felt and said.

RoseGoldHippie Wed 28-Dec-16 07:54:19

I don't think race has anything to do with it, I've heard people call each other similar with no diverse background. It's probably the 'insult de jour' amoung his mates.

YANBU to be cross about it as he should know not the be horrible to young girls and call them names.

hesterton Wed 28-Dec-16 07:59:44

I don't think you should negate the vile racism in that insult. It is there, loud and clear. It is what makes that insult a huge step beyond childish name calling. It gets at the very roots of who she is, her identity, and that of her family. It was meant to do that!

Ditsy4 Wed 28-Dec-16 07:59:45

I would ask to speak to him again and explain the hurt then tell him how he can get into trouble with the law for saying things like that. Indicate that you will let it go this time but in the future if he repeated the incident you won't. I think it was decent of the parents to make him go around and apologise and they are probably mortified.
He had probably picked it up from kids at school or watching unsuitable films!

PoppyFleur Wed 28-Dec-16 08:02:13

Appalling language and you have every right to be angry. My child and I are also from mixed heritage and I grew up in the 70s, where racist name calling was pretty much my daily norm so I do understand where you are coming from.

However the boy's mum acted swiftly and appropriately, unfortunately at 16 years old the influences in his life extend beyond his parents so I wouldn't be blaming them. If your daughter enjoys the company of the girl next door I wouldn't punish her by not letting them play. The parents are now aware and will be vigilant.

It sounds as though your daughter is mature and clever enough to know the foul language insults descended from his utter embarrassment at being beaten at a game - and by a girl. 2016 and we are still battling racism and sexism, it's depressing but it sounds like you have raised a smart child who has the measure of him.

SoupDragon Wed 28-Dec-16 08:05:58

I'd be wondering where he got that sort of language from

Really?? It's quite simple - School.

OP I can see why you are angry. The boy has been reprimanded and sent to apologise and your DD does not seem to be hurt by it. It could well just be something they say at school with no actual racist hatred behind it - I've had conversations with my teen DSs about how things they might say to close friends as banter should not be used with other people (not racist stuff but stuff that could easily be misinterpreted).

NotYoda Wed 28-Dec-16 08:07:06

I think Ditsy is right

Ask to speak to him again, and tell him that what he said was racist and misogynistic. Satisfy yourself that he understands that and knows that you could have had him arrested for hate-speak, on the grounds of racism and misogyny.

His mum did do the right thing

user1482840083 Wed 28-Dec-16 08:10:07

Hesterton - No I don't think he quite understands the racial and sexist implications of what he said. And perhaps I'm being biased, but looking back, the apology was dry. No feeling behind it, just necessity.

PoppyFleur - I was fortunate enough as a child not to be bombarded with racial insults due to my heritage (it did happen once or twice but was very infrequent) but DH - my God, the things he had to put up with frequently at school as a child actually made me cry. And it's something that we've always wanted to protect our kids from, so I guess that's where a lot of the anger comes from.

As for comments about such language being the norm in the boy's household . . . of course you can never rule anything out entirely but I think it's highly unlikely. The mother works at a centre for underprivileged teenage children and a lot of the kids there are minorities. When I was a child I picked up curse words not from home but just from socialising with others my age.

ChocChocPorridge Wed 28-Dec-16 08:16:44

I describe myself as a mongrel when I can't be bothered to explain the various origins, but that's in a self-deprecating, humourous way.

Using it as an insult, which this boy clearly did is terrible, and to me, suggests that your daughter might have been on the receiving end of it before - who thinks of that insult otherwise? It's pretty damn unusual, so I find it hard to believe he thought of it for the first time off the cuff in the middle of a computer game. Would she tell you if she was? She sounds confident, so perhaps has been brushing it off or not noticing?

Notmyname123 Wed 28-Dec-16 08:24:52

Don't go round again and revive the whole issue, it will only cause bad feeling with his parents who have probably already had the discussion with him about how appalling his conduct is. I'd suggest a conversation with them at a later stage about what you can all do to combat the racist attitudes he and others like him are learning in schools; perhaps you and his mother can go in to see the head about doing some serious work on that issue?

msrisotto Wed 28-Dec-16 08:26:03

Eugh that is a disgusting, awful insult and YANBU to be fuming. But it has been dealt with, he has beenforcedto apologised so do you want to bring it up again?

OzzieFem Wed 28-Dec-16 08:28:16

It's well known that boys can be sore losers at other gamers beating them, but especially girls. Despite having aliases when playing computer games online, once boys/males find out they have lost to a female some (not all) will start to commence trolling them, calling them vile names and telling them they wish they would die etc. It has nothing to do with colour in that situation as they cannot actually see the person, and only find out through other means that their opponent is/was female.

This in no way excuses the neighbours son. If this was my daughter I would be absolutely livid as well. If they go to the same school I would be mentioning this to the teachers.

lovelearning Wed 28-Dec-16 08:30:11

do you want to bring it up again?

OP, take inspiration from the words of Nelson Mandela:

No one is born hating another person because of the colour of his skin, or his background, or his religion. People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite.

Devilishpyjamas Wed 28-Dec-16 08:33:23

Gaming boys say horrible things to each other. It seems to be part of what they see as the banter. My son knows that if I hear him calling any of his friends any words that mock people with learning disabilities I will hit the roof & if I hear his friends via Skype using something like retard they will get a dressing down from me as well (followed by an explanation from ds2 of why I don't like it). I'd obviously pick him or them up on any racist terms as well. I also lecture ds2 about how to speak to girls (although actually he seems to lay off the boy type banter then)

His mother sounds good - she has picked him up on it. If your dd does a lot of gaming with boys she's probably used to being at the receiving end of insults - so that may be why she's not bothered. The boys my son plays with are all nice boys, perfectly polite when off the computer or talking to me & seem to work hard at school/college judging by their exam results & what they're up to. Insulting others seems part of the gaming culture.

I don't think there's anything wrong with having a word with him yourself about why that insult stepped over a line (honestly I am always having conversations with ds2 about insults & lines & what is banter & what is going too far) - but if she does do a lot of gaming with boys she will get called names - so it might also be worth talking to her about how to respond when someone goes too far as well.

user1482840083 Wed 28-Dec-16 08:52:55

Devilish - The gaming culture of online games is exactly why we don't allow DD to play online multiplayer games on the PlayStation. She mostly prefers playing offline, single player games anyway, so it works out. If she's playing against a human opponent then it's someone in the flesh, not online.

Choc - DD has thick skin. It's incredible how composed she is for her age. She gets it from her dad. There's a running joke in our family that if DD and DH were antelope being threatened by lions, they'd simply turn and stroll while their friends run away at full speed.

As for the comments regarding going round again - the boy's mother said she wants to talk to me extensively later today. Yesterday she was very busy so she didn't have the time. But she'll come around in the evening today and we'll talk properly.

areyoubeingserviced Wed 28-Dec-16 08:54:22

OP, I can understand how awful you must feel. However, i am not sure that you should bring it up with the boy again. The mother did the right thing and acted quickly.
However, I wouldn't want my daughter to play games with him again. He has to realise that there are consequences for his action.
Another thing OP as much as we try we cannot completely protect our children from the ignorance of others. All we can do is give them a sense of self worth.
On a purely superficial note, I bet your daughter is stunning.

Devilishpyjamas Wed 28-Dec-16 09:04:33

Ds2 only plays with people he knows - they're still pretty rude to each other. God knows what they'd be like if strangers.

1horatio Wed 28-Dec-16 09:06:59

YANBU.

I suspect he either heard that at school or maybe when playing video games online? If the mother called him out immediately and made him apologise I highly doubt that's an attitude present in their house.

Gaming is quite... well, vile. It is a possibility hat he simply said something offensive thing he could think of at that time.

But your anger makes sense and is justified imo. Especially if he didn't know exactly why what he said was so offensive. In this case he apologised for something despite understanding the whole impact of his insults...

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