1st some background. My son has a friend, Arnold, who is often mean to him. He got in trouble last week because he told Arnold he was going to shoot him. This is after Arnold taunted him. The school counselor said this is the story according to everyone there and Arnold himself, who apologized and told my son he was sorry he got my son in trouble. My son felt terrible and he was horrified he got sent to the principal’s office. This was his only “punishment” along with being told to try to avoid Arnold.
Also, they go to after school daycare together and one of the teachers has warned me that Arnold is a bully and has been bullying my son. However, my son doesn’t want to stop being his friend.
Today, they turned physical. My son tackled Arnold and hurt him at recess at school. He now has to stay in the principals office for the next 3 recesses and if he assaults anyone again he’ll get an in-school suspension. I accepted this as appropriate. However, my husband feels my son needs more punishment at home because our disapproval needs to be “memorable”. I don’t even know how I feel about that.
On one hand I feel there are extenuating circumstances. He is being taunted and bullied. He also is very sensitive and does suffer from being sent to the principals office and missing recess. They are “memorable”. These are closer to natural consequences than anything we can do at home. On the other hand, I don’t want to be one of those parents that thinks their child can do no wrong and lets them “get away with” bad behavior. The truth is he made a bad mistake. He needs to find better ways to cope with such situations. I want to tell him he can’t socialize with Arnold (however, I don’t know how to enforce that because I am not there when they are together).
He wanted to take away all his video game and TV time until Monday night. (That is 7.5 hours worth, btw.) I would rather require him to do something than to take something away. My other thought is to make him do something proactive. But I don’t think my husband will be satisfied with a punishment unless my son “suffers”. Thoughts? I don’t know what to do.