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11 Year Old - Friend's Comments - Should I Tell Parents?(6 Posts)
Advice please! My son has just started high school and is walking there with 3 others from his previous school. We're on day 3 and I have seen in their whatsapp group that the other boy (2 boys 2 girls in the group) has stated "X is a bitch", naming one of the girls. She has then left the group. Firstly, yes I do read my son's messages, with his knowledge, so I don't need comments on that please. I haven't spoken to my son yet (he's asleep). My thoughts are:
- if it was me I would want to know my son had said this. If I was the girl's mum I would also want to know but think this has to come second.
- my instinct is to speak to the boy's mum (I know her socially) - he has said a couple of things about people in his year 6 primary school whatsapp group previously which were inappropriate but not like this
- the boy is my son's friend and his only contact in his new form - he struggles to make new friends and I don't want the fact I know this to prejudice his friendship - at least until he's had a chance to settle in to high school and make some new friends.
- Right now I am feeling for the girl, they are only 11. I have no idea if she will have told her mum but suspect she hasn't (see later)
- They are due to all meet up tomorrow morning to walk to school and I am really concerned that the girl will be feeling, at best, pretty pissed off with him.
So, I have just offered (to the parents) to drive the kids tomorrow - I thought that would give the girl an 'out' - I am able to and it is due to rain so not too odd to ask (the girl's mum has replied and said yes but her tone suggests she doesn't know about the comment). Yet to hear from the other two.
- I will speak to my son about this at the weekend (I'm not worried about him - he has reported worrying behaviour to his teacher at primary himself before).
Q: Should I leave it at that? Should I speak to the boy's mum (my view at the moment is that I should)? Should I speak to the girl's mum? Both mum's are friends-through-school (if that makes sense).
I would tell the girl's Mother. AND I would tell your son he needs to NOT stand by when other boys do similar.
Perhaps the two girls might prefer to walk together and not with your son and the other boy? That would solve things in one way but they may come to that themselves.
Thanks, appreciate your comments. My son hasn't even read the message yet (I saw it as I was putting the phone on to charge) but will be speaking to him when he wakes up. And yes, I suspect the girls may well walk together, apparently they do walk ahead anyway (which may be the cause of all this).
Oh I see! I thought the boy had said this to the girl's face during their walk!
If it's a message on social media app then I would definitely speak to your son about the serious ramifications of online bullying which this is a sign of....something as simple as one name calling episode can result in serious trouble at school if the girl hears of it and tells her parents.
Make sure your son knows never to join in.
At this point I wouldn't do anything but I would tell your son that he is to let you know if anything else happens and then tell the school...not the parents...the school.
Thanks. Just to update.. Spoke to my son and he was horrified. He has sent a message to the girl to say he thought it was wrong and I gave all 4 a lift to school this morning.. And the two in question were absolutely fine with each other! So, I am going to speak to the boy's mum as I am not happy with the use of "bitch" and think about whether to speak to the girl's mum. I suspect the boy's mum will speak to her anyway (I think she will be as horrified as we are).
"Firstly, yes I do read my son's messages, with his knowledge, so I don't need comments on that please."
At 11, I actually consider it good parenting to read the messages!
As for the "bitch": I think it's hard to say without context. Kids often use harsher words than we'd like or that we used at their age and it's often not such a big deal for them. Your update that the two involved kids were fine with each other show that too.
I am not supportive of language like that and I wouldn't want my child to use it, but I wouldn't create a big drama about it either, unless the children can't resolve their differences by themselves.