Boys Will Be Boys, and Sometimes They’re Assholes.

Just to show y’all that Finn doesn’t have a monopoly on laying challenge and heartache at my feet, here’s an interesting development concerning my eldest:

I went into the boys’ room last night at bedtime, and Kevin was sitting there with no shirt on.   Right away I noticed two large purple-turning-to-green bruises on his upper arm.  I asked him how that happened, and he got that shifty-eyed look and the forced chuckle and he said, “What?  That?  I don’t know.  Don’t you ever get bruises that you don’t know how you got them?”  Well, yeah, I do, like on my legs – I mean, being a klutz and all, that’s where you’ll find bruises from accidentally bumping into things and such.  Upper arms though?  Hmmm.  I knew he was lying.

To make a long story short(er), I took him into my room to talk to him privately, and the truth came out – that some kid he sits next to in math class repeatedly punched him in the arm as part of some game.  Those are some bruises, so they must have been some punches.   The whole thing apparently happened last week.

While Kevin claims it was part of a “game” (the other kid would try to make Kevin flinch, and if he flinched, he got punched), he did admit that he wasn’t a willing participant and he did tell the kid to knock it off (and the kid didn’t).

This whole thing disturbs me on so many levels:

  • Kevin lied to me!  These little white lies are becoming something of a theme with him.
  • Some punk is inflicting bodily harm on my kid!  There is something about seeing ugly marks on your child’s flesh, inflicted by another person, that brings the mama bear out.
  • This happened during class!  This kid punched Kevin, and did whatever he was doing to get Kevin to flinch – in other words, created what one would think was a ruckus – repeatedly, and the teacher didn’t notice?  WTF?

My first inclination was to get in touch with the teacher.  I mean, really, what the hell is going on in her class that something like this can happen under her nose and she’s unaware?  Kevin was very upset at the thought of my possibly doing anything about the situation.  I still don’t know if he’s being bullied, or if this is some weird but typical rite of passage that boys of a certain age inflict on each other.  I don’t like it one bit.

In the end, Michael talked me out of doing anything, saying “boys will be boys,” and that at 14, Kevin is at an age where he needs to be given the opportunity to deal on his own, in his own way.  I guess the last thing he needs is his mommy running to school to stick up for him.


11 Comments on “Boys Will Be Boys, and Sometimes They’re Assholes.”

  1. Kara
    March 15, 2011 at 9:16 pm #

    He must have been involved in a “Two for Flinching” match. I totally remember those days. And yes, it’s a juvenile boys’ “game.” My brothers used come home with these bruises too. Sometimes I’m just so happy I have girls.

    For a popular culture reference, look up the Malcolm in the Middle episode about “The Circle Game.” Or the 1980’s movie Stand By Me. For as long as boys have had arms, they’ve been “playing” this “game.”

  2. Sarah
    March 15, 2011 at 9:16 pm #

    Oh Lisa, I would really struggle with that. The mama bear in me would want to do something!!! Good luck with the situation!

    Sarah (the down under one but not THE down under one!!)

  3. tiny
    March 16, 2011 at 3:49 am #

    I’d check if he’s been punching others… if not, sounds bully like… I only have girls too so the whole thing sounds weird. Boys are weird.. and I’d be pissed like you.

  4. Stacey
    March 16, 2011 at 7:30 pm #

    I agree with a PP that this is a normal “game” that boys play, but I disagree with Michael’s advice to not do anything. Large bruises aren’t normal, the other boy not stopping the “game” when asked to is not OK, and games of any sort should not be played during class. Kevin is a smart kid, so I’m sure he knows this was wrong; he is either protecting a friend who got carried away, or scared of a bully. I would take photos of his bruises, and tell him that I will give him a chance to talk with the puncher about (a) not playing games (at least with Kevin) in class, and (b) not continuing to hurt someone who says no. And I would take the photos to the principal (and possibly the police) if he doesn’t.

    Mama bears teach their cubs how to fight, but they’ll take down a predator if the cub can’t. 😉

  5. Stephanie
    March 17, 2011 at 2:31 am #

    oooh that is tough! Recently, a girl in my son’s class BIT him (in response to his belittling her) and left a huge mark. When I saw the telltale marks I totally freaked out and seriously wanted to go bite that little girl right back. I was seriously surprised at the anger I felt, but there IS something about seeing bruises on your baby and ones that were inflicted in violence. I was also torn about whether to contact the teacher, but turns out she found out about it and the little girl got suspended for a day bc they have a zero tolerance policy.

  6. Wendy
    March 17, 2011 at 2:32 pm #


    This is my first time every responding to a blog. I read many DIY blogs. I love decorating and making things look nice for less. I also am in the Legal Field and have been for 18 years now. I am a 40 year old mom. I work full time and have two beautiful girls (Maranda is 9 and Brenna is 4). I will be celebrating 11 years of marriage toon and well life is crazy for parents. There are a few things I would like to comment about. First of all are you from New York? because you have that tell it like you see attitude which is ME.. yes, I am a Yankee. However, I have been told by many that my way of expressing myself comes across Rude and not very tactful…and all those other adjectives. I am going to say the cliche thing that you have commented on before.. yes you are a Superwomen.. 6 children.. it takes alot of patience.. and it is something I would not choose and could not do.. I know it.. I set out to have just 1 child and “well we hit the jackpot with 2” as my husband said. I do have a confession to make.. that is a Catholic Thing.. :O).. When I was pregnant for Brenna, I took a genetic test because I was over 35. Not expecting anything would come of it. Well, the percentage of her having DS was high and rocked my world. My doctor indicated that there was another test that would let us know 100% whether or not she had DS, but there was a Risk of Miscarriage. My husband didn’t take the news well of having a child that had DS. His thought process was, if we know this child has a disability (one that would most likely not allow them to live independently and have to climb mountains instead of hills).. why would you want to bring him/her into this world. The world is hard enough for children without a disability. I have to tell you at first I agreed and then I wondered….with my faith and how strong it is, how could I abort this child. I asked questions, as to why is this happening to us. We took the test and Brenna was born a healthy little girl. Whether your child has a disability or not there is always a worry amongst parents of whether or not they will fit in, will they make it through life without being damaged at the hands of others.. For me the hard part would be thinking about who would of taken care of my child if she had a disability. I don’t feel that my other daugther should feel obligated to be the care taker of her sibling. She would have her own life and what a big obligation that would of been. However, I wouldn’t want to of known that my child was in a institution either. What I am trying to say is my heart goes out to all parents that have a child with a disabilty whatever it may be. Putting your life out there for people to see and judge you is something I wouldn’t do, but I applaud you for that. I look forward to reading your blog in the future.

  7. christina
    March 17, 2011 at 4:57 pm #

    oh man, I really want to comment on Wendy’s post but I don’t want to be rude. On another note, pertaining to your post, I am going through the very same thing but with an almost 13 year old and it all seems to be starting now. The white lies, the length of time spent in the br, the interaction with girls, the attitude. God how I hate this attitude. I wish he could stay about 9 years old forever. This growing up stuff really sucks. And the transition is so hard. Hang in there, I try to remind myself that this too will pass. It’s just so hard when the light at the end of the tunnel is so far away.

  8. Wendy
    March 18, 2011 at 3:11 pm #

    Christina. be my guest comment on my post.. nothing you say is going to harm me. I have thick skin my friend and the only person who’s judgement is going to count in my lifetime is the heavenly father.. Write away.

    • Lisa
      March 18, 2011 at 4:47 pm #

      Let’s keep comments on topic, please. Also, I do not want my blog to be a forum for anyone to (a) bash each other, or (b) spout their religious beliefs, unless such beliefs are relevant to the subject matter. Thank you.

      • Wendy
        March 18, 2011 at 6:44 pm #

        Not to be hypicritical… but I read your post about Kelle Hampton’s Blog and if that isn’t bashing I don’t know what is… It may have been your opinion or betrayel of someone you don’t even know.. but it was still bashing….just as no one will ever know what you are dealing with because they don’t walk in your shoes.. there is a tactful way of saying what you need to say.. or saying the truth.. we all try to deal the cards a different way and hope that everyone understands why we do what we do. Your blog is real.. but a little to hard for me.. I am not looking for the unicorn or rainbows.. but I would much rather see the glass 1/2 full rather then 1/2 empty.. and that may be why Kelle’s blog is World wide.

        Best of luck in your life.

      • Lisa
        March 18, 2011 at 7:39 pm #

        Wendy, you may call my post about her blog “bashing.” I don’t, but that’s your right, to think what you think. However, this is my blog, which means it’s MY forum, to write about the things I choose to write about in the manner I choose. I will not allow my blog to be a forum for commenters to bash each other or to promote their own agendas. If you want to do that, you should do so on your own blog. In all honesty, every one of your comments thus far has been veiled and not-so-veiled criticism. You seem to be itching to start something, and I’m not interested. I am perfectly willing to engage in constructive discussion, and I certainly don’t expect everyone to agree with me. I do think, however, that you might be better served by moving on to blogs that appeal to you more. I’m not going to publish any more of your comments that come across as combative and/or that are not relevant to the post to which you are responding. Thanks.

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