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Did I make things worse? I hope not.(7 Posts)
Long background condensed. DS (9) has ASD, Dyspraxia and Dyslexia. He struggles at school to put it mildly. We have neighbours with a 12 yr old who sometimes walks home with DS and they get on well outside of school. He has no diagnosis but presents extremely similarly to DS. This lad has had trouble with bullies and doesn't really want DS to hang around him at school.
Today was absolutely pelting down and DS was part of a group presentation at assembly so I attended. During assembly a certificate was called out for a child with a similar name to neighbours boy and he stood up and started to go to front before realising it wasn't him. There was the usual sniggering and I could see he was upset at his embarrassment. When assembly was over I got a text from his mum asking could I give her boy a lift home. When I walked over to him I could hear 3 boys still giving him a hard time so I barrelled them out "Oi you three, leave him alone" and they took off. We walked to the car and the whole way he said to anyone who even remotely knew him "these are just my neighbours" (I am pretty sure he didn't want people to think he hung around with my ds who as I say struggles on all fronts at school) then on the way home lad said "It's not as bad as it used to be, I used to think of killing myself when it was really bad" I text his mum to call me and let her know what he had said but now I am stewing about whether I made it worse for him by yelling at the kids and by making our friendship with him "known" and also not sure if I handled telling his mum right as I didn't tell him I was going to but felt I couldn't not tell her. Arggh I would hate, hate, hate it to get worse for him.
BTW please don't read into this stuff about him being embarrassed by ds as that is not what this is actually about.
Tbh, I would have intervened even if I hadn't known the boy (and have done so on occasion), as would a lot of adults I know, so I doubt there's an issue there really. You'll be just a random grown up to them.
And if he was my son, I'd appreciate you letting me know he'd opened up to you like that. Poor kid . Your boy sounds like he's having a difficult time too... Are the school onto it (in both cases?)
Poor boy. You absolutely did the right thing by telling his mother, she needs to know.
As for intervening, you acted on instinct and I would have done the same.
I hope the school are involved
School are resoundingly useless at support for my ds but he is happy for now which is our priority. As for other lad I'm not sure about school support (but I wouldn't hold out too much hope with our experience with them dealing anything outside the box), so worried about the lad next door and feeling so helpless.
I would have done the same. In fact I think I would have gone further. I would have reported the boys to the head. This is an ongoing issue and the school have responsibilities. Even if they are useless.
You had to tell his mum. Maybe he told you in the hope you would tell her? That would be a difficult conversation for a kid to have with their mum.
Think about it this way. If you hadn't done anything and things escalated for that poor boy, he may follow through with his threat.
I think that boy is probably more grateful to you and your son for company and support than he lets on. I can see why he doesn't want people thinking he hangs out with much younger children, but I think you're right by not taking offence - he's probably secretly glad you and your son are around.
I think you did the right thing - kids picking on someone who they know has some differences/difficulties is clearly wrong and they need calling on it.
I think it's good for that boy to know that people are around to be there for him. Away from what you asked, I wonder whether an assessment/diagnosis might help him? It might be worth talking to his mother about your experiences? It might provide the boy (and school?) with a better understanding of himself.
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