‘Hey, you shouldn’t talk like that.’ Another student was saying rude things about kids in the lunch line.’: Woman shares proud mom moment, ‘I’m raising a leader who stands up to bullies’

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“On the third day of kindergarten, Harlow was in the lunch line and overheard another student saying rude things about other kids. Harlow turned around and said, ‘Hey, you shouldn’t talk like that,’ so the kid punched her in the arm. She immediately went and told the teacher what happened.

The school called us. I ended up missing the call because I was in a meeting, so when my husband was finally able to reach me, he told me what happened. ‘The school just called. Another kid hit Harlow when she was in the lunch line today,’ he said.

‘HIT her?! Like, physically?!’ I responded. Well…I may have yelled. My stomach dropped. She’d been so excited about school and so nervous whether the other kids would like her. All summer she’d been expressing anxiety about making friends. This had the potential to be exactly the thing that would crush her confidence.

‘Yes. Sounds like they’re talking to that kid’s parents about it. They said she’s fine and they’re handling it.’

When I picked her up, she was totally happy and at ease. I was not nearly as relaxed as she was. My internal Mama Bear was still growling. She told me about what happened very matter-of-factly. She overheard the student being rude and stood up to him. Then he hit her. She said she cried a little bit because she was so mad. But she told me she was totally fine now.

I was stewing about it into the evening. I ended up emailing her teacher, just to gain some perspective. Her teacher responded almost immediately and was incredibly reassuring. Apparently, Harlow has been a great leader and helper at school.

On this day, I initially felt rage. But then, when the dust settled, I felt a warm rush of pride. I’m raising a leader who stands up to bullies, seeks reinforcement, and moves on.

I am very proud.”

Mom and daughter make kissy faces at each other while taking photos together before school
Courtesy of Mandy Bechtold

This story was submitted to Love What Matters by Mandy Bechtold. You can follow her journey on Instagram. Submit your own story here. Be sure to subscribe to our free email newsletter for our best stories, and YouTube for our best videos.

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