Tonight we took Naief to a park w/ slides, swings... you name it, they had it. He loves the place, and it exhausts him, so mommy and daddy love it! ;)
We go probably a few times a week, sometimes more, depending on schedules, but tonight was the first time for Naief to encounter a bully...
I've been wanting to write a post for a few days now on the differences between children from different cultures. Now... I'm no expert on the raising of children, that's a given, but I do believe you have to have discipline, teach a child right from wrong and such... as you all know.
Tonight Naief ran over to this one particular area that has a slide, a tunnel that you crawl through at the top w/ a slide at the other end that's enclosed ... and fun stuff like that. It's a favorite for him. As he started up the stairs, there was a little boy (Arab) at the top that first tried to push him off the stairs. This isn't a first... since some kids don't want other children in their 'play' space, so I figured he'd give up when Naief didn't, and go off to do his own thing. But... when that didn't work, he then waited for Naief to get to the top and proceeded to tackle him.... down to the floor/bottom of this thing! When he got 'em down, the kid got on top of him and wouldn't let him up.... even putting his arm around his neck and keeping it to the floor! Such a mean little boy!! He looked mean... isn't it sad that a child that young is so mean?! Makes me wonder what's happening at home.
Needless to say, Naief started to cry, and then I got worried that the child either took a bite or was trying to take a bite....
Hashim had to get Naief (I think hubby was in a coma or something... or just letting them fight it out or wanting to see what would happen because he just stood there for what seemed to be ages... I have no idea, but I was having none of it!!) and he literally had to pull the child off of him... while the father stood over to the side and said nothing. Only until we got the boy off, did his father come over and say that this child is trouble (all in Arabic to Hashim) and told the boy to get down, to which the boy got smart, refused and went on his merry little way. This kid was smaller than Naief... so I have no idea how old he was... maybe the same age... maybe younger.
With hesitation, Naief went back up the stairs and once he got to the top, all he could do was look behind himself to make sure the kid wasn't there and do this little whimpering thing. After some encouragement, he decided to go down the slide on our side, but didn't want to go back up after.....
Even after going over into the other areas w/ other slides and things, I noticed that he'd get sorta fearful when encountering other kids... altho, he did warm up to this cute little girl (who was Jordanian, come to find out) that was the same height and had light hair. She was also the same age as Naief. Her brother was there playing and became very protective of his sister when Naief got close. It was sweet. The brother was probably 7 or so. After obviously forgetting his worry, he eased up and started kicking the ball to Naief, which Naief loved. He'd run around kicking and trying to get the ball while squealing w/ glee! :)
Hashim thinks that Naief will probably be bullied in school. This makes me a bit sad to even think about, and you guys may be thinking "yeah, but that's a few yrs from now and you're right, but, lemme tell ya, that's all mothers talk about!!! "What school will you send Naief to?" "Have you thought about schools?" "Don't put him there, he'll be picked on" "I have a friend whose child was bullied in every school... his mother is an American."
Plus, all the good schools have waiting lists that can take yrs, so you have to plan ahead... (btw, the really good private schools are VERY, very expensive. you have your choice from a ton of others that are private, but they have their own pros and cons, w/ many being racist (from what I hear) , towards those that aren't pure Bahraini).
So... as you can see, one tends to think about these things quite a bit... and his being bullied for whatever reason, has concerned me and something I'd prefer not to happen... but I know that's not life. It will happen, at some point... maybe many times.
Anyway, after tonight's little reminder... I told Hashim that it would be good to get him into karate lessons (when he's old enough, of course) or something so he'd learn how to protect himself in case that ever happened. Plus, it'll give him a boost, if he were afraid, that he could possibly, hopefully, kick some major butt if it came down to it. And I like the thought of that!
Originally, my post was going to be about the way I see Arab kids behaving compared to Indian kids, especially the way they are w/ Naief... but tonight pretty much proved my point to be false (with the Jordanian kids and an Indian girl), so I'll wrap up w/ this point. I think bullying is derived from other underlying issues (sees same at home, not given enough love, attention, and/or ignored... causing the child to act out). It's sad to see so many parents not caring about their children. Not enough to discipline, give guidance, lead by example.... while giving the love and attention your child so desperately needs.