|source RJD Posters|
Lately we have had a few things happen that just make me so sad!
Firstly, there is the bullying of my son. He is in year 6 and 11 years old. He is currently being bullied by a year 8 boy (approx 14yrs old) about being fat. Let me start off firstly by saying I think NOBODY has the right to pass judgment or say anything on anyone else's physical being and I am absolutely livid that this child does this. It started last year when my son was in year 5 and the other boy was in year 7. M didn't tell me it was happening or how bad it was because he was scared the boy was going to physically assault him. It wasn't till the end of the year that he fully opened up to me and begged me not to go back to the school.
At the start of the school year on the first day I went to see the Principal with M and we told her what happened, she guaranteed me this wouldn't happen this year and that if it did that M must tell her and his teachers so it can be handled. For the first few weeks to a month in the first term I asked him every few days if he had seen the boy and had any trouble with him? He kept telling me no and I started to ask less and less because I didn't want to make the issue any bigger. I was gutted again when during the school holidays M admitted to me that the boy had been bullying him again. It always happens when he is getting changed for PE or Sport and both M and this other boy are in the change rooms at the same time. I don't know why on earth they put year 6 boys and year 8 boys in the change room at the same time? I told M once we go back I would make an appointment with his class teacher, the year adviser and also the principal so we can get this sorted out. I don't want to stand by and watch M deal with this again this year. Last year he became increasing agitated and also lost weight, at first I thought it was a growth spurt and maybe the start of puberty but now I think it has more to do with the bullying. I won't stand by and let another kid treat my child this way.
So this Thursday we have our appointment booked before our parent teacher interviews and I am going to get this kid to stop this bullying some way or another. I am going to ask the teachers why they put kids in a change room together when physically they are so much going on with their bodies and that maybe the school should considering changing this. I also want M to feel comfortable telling both me and the teachers who this child is so he can be dealt with and stops. I am sure if he is doing this to my son then he is probably doing it to others too. I know people mistreat others when they fell horrible about themselves but that isn't good enough! Work out your issues and leave others alone! If this kid isn't stopped he will be the douche bag we all have to put up with later in life because no one did anything about it when he was younger. Also just a side not to all parents in fact to everyone! : If you are an adult and think it is okay to make comments about other people's bodies just sit back and think about who is listening to you! I don't think you should do it in the first place for starters but just think what your kids or other people are hearing you say! They are going to do just what you are doing and it hurts so grow up and stop it!
I went to school yesterday and we were rushed through some lame excuse for a meeting because parent teacher interviews were after us. I am really annoyed about this because I rang and made a special request for a meeting last week and also asked for a suitable time so my husband could come too. I was told then that this was a suitable time for them and if we needed to have another meeting with my husband then we could discuss that later. The meeting I feel did not really accomplish much and was a total waste of time. We met with the class teacher and the year adviser but no principal as I requested. I feel as if the year adviser has made up her own mind about this and isn't really up for doing anything about it. She came right out and said in front of my son that some kids have problems with having others see their bodies in change rooms etc and that it sounds like this is something my son is worried about. Yet when she asked him does he go swimming and not have a problem with not wearing a shirt or changing he said no he didn't have a problem with that but she just fobbed that comment off.
Until yesterday I didn't understand that this child who is 2 years old then my son comes into the change rooms to use the toilets during their PE or sport time, during this time my son is getting changed and this is when the comments have been made. The year adviser came to her own conclusion as to how this was not happening and my son didn't feel comfortable in setting her straight either. He is scared to tell who this child is because he's worried he will be physically assaulted. After meeting with the staff yesterday I don't blame him for not wanting to tell them either because they didn't exactly make either of us feel like they were there to help. Many times during the interview I felt like I was being made a fool of and it didn't seem to make any difference what I said to them. It was also brought to my attention that the school knew about some form of bullying by this older child last year and the year adviser swore she called me about it. I told her I was never phone by her about this and now I am quite annoyed about that too.
Now we need to work out what the next step for us should be? Should I ask for another meeting, knowing quite well now what they think on the subject? Should I take it directly to the principal or just walk away?
This is bullshit and not good enough when schools claim they have anti-bullying policies, yet I am not seeing much of a policy right now! I am considering finding new schools for the kids if it doesn't improve because I don't feel comfortable with my child going here if he can't get support and understanding when he needs it most.
If anyone has had any experience or general suggestions to deal with this I am looking for any help I can get. Has anyone had success with moving their children to another school out of zone because of a reason like this and had success? The zones in the area we live in seem to be so strict and without a very good reason people don't seem to be allowed to go to other schools unless they pay to go to private or religious schools. There is a new school being built in the area but this won't be open until next year and it also is only P-6 so won't be suitable for my son as he will be going in to year 7.
Thanks for you comments on this post and your support, I really appreciate it.
My second gripe with those who show a lack of common courtesy and respect is thanks to the real estate agent and the owner of the property we currently live in. We've lived in this house for 3 years and we have treated it like it was our own. Sadly the house has just been put on the market. I know it is the owners property and they have every right to sell, what I don't agree to is being treated like dirt in the process. Out of the blue 2 real estate agents did appraisals on the property and then we heard nothing for weeks from either them or the owner. We were then informed by a gardener that the property was put on the market because he came to do a quote to re-mulch the garden beds to spruce the garden up for the sale of the house. What The? nice to be told about this! He was one of four gardeners who came to our house, but the only one who called in advance to make an appointment. The other 3 had no appointments and expected to be let in, me being me I let them in to do it, but I was annoyed because who knows who these people could have been? People go around saying they are from a wide number of places these days when they actually aren't! I have 3 kids and I need to be safe. The worst thing was our real estate agent of 3 years didn't even bother to call us and we called them they made excuses! We also had to have our personal possessions photographed and put on a sales board and on the internet for the sale of the house which I felt like we had no choice but to agree too.
After I made it quite clear to the agent I didn't think there was much common courtesy being displayed by them or the owner they promised it wouldn't happen again and that they would be more mindful. I was hopeful but sadly it didn't get any better. Just a day later I received a text message yes a text message! that there would be an open house inspection that coming Saturday and that they wanted to hold one thereafter for as many foreseeable Saturdays until the house sold! When I called back the agent he was rude and I felt like I was being bullied into doing the open too.This was the straw the broke the camels back and this was when we decided to seriously think about moving. We didn't want to go through this every weekend then only to be possibly kicked out when a new owner brought and they weren't an investor.
So we started looking around and met 2 fantastic real estate agents who were both very helpful. I explained to them the situation and what had been happening and they were both disgusted that we were being treated that way. One of the agents even told us that we were able to ask for a rent reduction if we wanted to stay when a property goes on the market and you are renting. I didn't know that and the agents we rent through sure as heck weren't going to share that information. So with 2 properties in mind and really lots to choose from as we live in the fastest growing suburb in Australia we gave notice last Friday. I felt sick doing that because we hadn't found a house to move into yet, but my husband was right in saying our current property owners and real estate agents don't deserve our money when they treat us this way either! Lots of people were telling us just to move out or to fight them and not allow them to do things unless it was formally written in letters etc, but to be honest I don't have the energy. I think it takes far my energy to be nasty then what it does to be nice and I don't plan on becoming a nasty person just because others do it. I would also prefer to walk away with my head held high knowing I did the right thing too because this is worth far more to me in the long run.
We put an application in late on Friday afternoon and found out Monday afternoon it was processed and successful!! So looks like it does pay to do the right thing and to treat people with respect. Our new real estate agent said she wished she had more tenants like us and even convinced the new landlords to wait an extra week so we didn't have to pay rent in two properties for two weeks. Thank goodness because I was really starting to question living in the city and have considered moving back to NSW or into QLD so we were closer to family. Our current but soon to be old landlords and real estate agents are now going to have to worry about finding new tenants or have no one living in the house until it sells. Things would have been much different had they treated us with a bit of respect and practiced some common courtesy. I'm not a hard person to get along with and I always try to do the right thing.
So now we have to pack up the house and beg our friends to help us move in a few weeks time. Good news is the property is in an estate that has the use of a pool, gym and tennis court facilities plus it is cheaper then where we rent now!
Being nice doesn't always mean you have to finish last, it just means that sometimes it might take a little big longer to get where you are going. I found the picture below that reminded me of how to react when bad things happen in the world.
If you think you need to find out more about your rights when it comes to renting and or when the property you rent goes on the market check out this Tenant Union Victoria which has details of where to look within Australia and also international sites on your rights. You can also Google tenant rights and your state to find other information that maybe relevant too.