"Uh oh," I said. "What happened?"
"Well..." and then the tears started falling. During recess one of Kassidy's friends told her that she overheard some boys were saying that they saw a provocative picture of Kassidy in a bikini on her facebook page. And rumors were flying.
Problem 1: Kassidy doesn't have a facebook page.
Problem 2: She doesn't have a bikini.
Problem 3: Even if she did have a facebook page and a bikini, she sure as heck wouldn't be posting provocative pictures on it!
Still though, Kassidy was devastated that these boys - boys who she thought were her friends no less - were saying these things about her.
So we talked about it on the way home... we talked about how it was OK to be sad, but tomorrow she needs to not let them know it's getting to her. I told her if anyone said anything to her about it that she should just say, "That's funny, I don't have a facebook page OR a bikini, so I don't know how that's possible!" and walk away.
For dinner we went to the Chic-Fil-A fundraiser night for her school and I tried to get her mind off it, but she kept saying things like, "I don't understand... what did I do to them to make them talk about me?" Ahhh welcome to the lovely world of pre-teen drama, my dear. I wouldn't go back if you paid me.
Then, just a little while ago, her teacher called. (I love her teacher!) Kassidy had told her about all of this when it happened and she tried to look into it, but recess is literally right before school gets out so there wasn't much time. After school though, two of the boys in question were still at the school so she talked to them. Their response? "NO! We weren't talking about Kassidy! We were talking about CassIE!" Hmm... And she said they felt really bad that Kassidy thought they were talking about her... they went on to say that they weren't talking about Cassie badly either... it was more of an excited "I saw her on facebook in a bikini!" (Which is so ummm typical of a 5th grade boy???)
So, now Kassidy is breathing a sigh of relief. She is sitting here next to me talking out her feelings once again. "It feels good to not be mad at anybody." She even said she wants to apologize to the boys tomorrow for being angry with them... they didn't even know she was angry with them, but she said it would make her heart feel better. :) I have an awesome daughter.
There were lots of lessons learned today:
Even though I am sure Kassidy's friend thought she was doing the right thing by protecting her friend, even ONE syllable can make a world of difference when you overhear something. Make sure you have your facts straight or keep your mouth shut! You can cause someone a lot of hurt without meaning to. Rumors take on a life of their own... what started as possibly a boy saying a flirtatious thing about one girl, quickly turned into a hurtful thing about another.
Don't jump to conclusions. I know this is hard, especially when it's about you or someone you love. My mama bear claws came out right away today. I wasn't going to go in and beat down any 5th grade boys
Facebook has an age limit for a reason... maybe 5th graders shouldn't have facebook pages... and if they DO, be sure they have strict parental supervision. This has been a big topic in our household on several occasions as many of Kassidy's friends do have pages of their own. Frank and I have decided that for now we are just not ready for Kassidy to have her own page. Today's drama confirms that decision. How much harder would it have been if Kassidy DID have a page? She easily could have been accused of removing a picture or whatever. The internet is a tricky thing... at any age.
Forgiveness and not having anger in your heart is a beautiful thing.
The pre-teen years stink. And we're just starting out. Lord, help us!