Tuesday, October 27, 2009
I'LL PLAY WITH YOU
Whelp, my little brush with internet fame is over - for now. (GRAND PLANS, PEEPS! GRAND PLANS! And by that I mean that I have no plans.)
It was fun while it lasted, though. Well, it was mostly fun. Comment boards really bring out the wingnuts. I didn't have it too bad (it's not like I was writing about circumcision*) but a few people took my article way, way too much to heart. I thought I was writing a heartfelt-but-comedic piece about playground politics but some parents weren't seeing the funny.
I've decided that anonymity and the internet don't mix. There's something about not having to publish your real name that turns people into bullies. And I don't even think that it makes people more honest - it's like it triggers some deep, primal aggression. I understand the critical comments I received from those raising autistic/developmentally disabled kids. Valid, all. But I'm pretty sure some of the other ones were written by bored, lonely folks who needed something to complain about and their neighbors/delivery people/kickable pets weren't around. I actually found myself feeling sorry for Paris Hilton. Being disliked, even by people who don't know you, feels rotten.
Speaking of not letting small people hurt your feelings, today after nap time my todder - my sweet, angel boy - told me, in no uncertain terms, to go away.
Go away? Where did he learn that batch of awfulness? I blame those little bastards at the playground. The obnoxious "big" kids (usually Kindergarteners) who take over the toddler boat and declare it off-limits to boys or babies or kids they don't know. As a mother who's prone to hovering, I constantly struggle with letting Owen claim independence, and part of being independent is learning how to handle some inevitable rejection. But when I hear those little jerks tell at my boy to leave them alone I want to do unspeakable violence. He's a baby! He shouldn't have to feel rejection yet! I know that innocence has to wear off and that it's totally normal for kids at this age to start losing their purity and gentleness, but he's a BAAAABY! And even though he doesn't understand exactly what they're saying, he understands enough. (Apparently he understands what "go away" means now too, which breaks my heart.)
Anybody got tips for what to tell a toddler when kids are mean? I usually do some variation on "that child doesn't want to play right now" but that's not dulling the hurt these days. What can I tell this little guy?
*All the circumcision articles - pro and con - in this week's NY Mag were fascinating, by the way.