As a parent the first thing you want to do when your child tells you something that happens at school the first thing want to do is jump on your child’s side and defend them. Cause you never want anything to happen to your child. You always want to be their protector and think that whatever they tell you is true. When I was a kid I always used to get mad when I would tell my parents something that happened at school and instead of taking my word for it they used to investigate. Especially when I was lying. The worst thing was getting caught in a lie. Sometimes it wouldn’t even be a lie it would be what I perceived happened. Like for example one time when I was in sixth grade I was absent from school because I missed the bus. We were a one car family then so if I missed the bus and my dad had already left for work I had no choice but to stay home. Well when I went to school the next day and presented my excuse note to my teacher Ms. Pinnachi ( I still remember her name to this day), she read it , then she looked at me, and said your mom should have made sure you got on the bus. To me it sounded like she was trying to be rude and it just rubbed me the wrong way so of course I went home and told my mom. So when I told her I expected her to be like oh heck nah!! and then go and call my teacher. Now one thing my mom never did was call my teachers in front of me. She would wait until the next day and then speak to the teacher I think it was so she could be calmer about the situation and because it was an adult conversation. Then I would get the results of the conversation when I got home. Well this time when I got home she told me that she had spoken with Ms. Pinnachi and that the way I took it was wrong and I wound up having to write a letter of apology to her. Since becoming a mom I have had to do the exact same thing. I have had to remember that the way my children resent a story is not always the exact truth. Yesterday was the perfect example for me.
So on Tuesday Private J told me a bit of shocking news that I wasn’t expecting. He told me that his gym coach had searched his book bag and then threw away his winter hat. Now being that I am his mom of course I was upset but I Also had presence of mind to ask him to tell me the story and to write it down. In his version of the story he said that he was walking into the gym and that his coach noticed a bulge in his book bag. He said that she asked him to open his bag so that she could see what it was. Private J keeps his gym clothes in his book bag along with his books and his winter hat that he has been wearing for a few days since it is cold in the morning now. He said that she saw the hat and then told him that she thought he had drugs such as cocaine or marijuana. I know that these drugs are actually quite easy to get hold of which is why so many use services like those found on enterhealth.com to get over their substance, but I was adamant that there’s no way I could have got hold of something like this. I Told him that, that was a bit odd that if he was carrying drugs that I AM certain they know he would more than likely not have drugs where they are easily found. So as I am getting angrier cause now I’m being told they thought my kid was a drug dealer. Why couldn’t they just use saliva drug tests? I’m also realizing that some of his story just doesn’t make sense so being the investigator that I am I start asking more questions. I asked him was he wearing the hat and he told me no. It began to sound odd to me that this coach for no reason decided to throw his hat away. I gave her, her suspicions cause it’s her job to protect the students. So I asked him I said well after she found out that the bulge was your hat what happened? He told me that she then handed the hat to another coach who then handed it to the janitor who threw it away. In my head I’m saying that doesn’t make sense but also I’m thinking well why in the heck would she throw it away after finding out what it was. So I was highly upset. Just thinking how dare she do that. Another thing that bothered me was when Private J told me this it was after 5. That meant the staff had more than likely already left for the day so I couldn’t jump on it right away so I had no choice but to wait until the next day. In the meantime I did research on school policy as to searches and then I would ask Private J questions. Like teachers are suppose to take them off to the side and they aren’t suppose to be alone. So I asked him if they took him off to the side and he said yes. I asked him if the coach was alone when she searched his book bag and he said yes but the door was open. I’m just getting angrier and angrier by the moment. Now my anger is in between the coach threw his hat away and to the fact that I think there is a possibility that my kid could be lying because his story is getting more elaborate as he goes. I mean this boy should write scripts for a living, is he actually a drug dealer? I didn’t think many young kids would try to do such a thing now considering you can now Visit website after website that will deliver cannabis to you. I still couldn’t prove either especially since he was sticking to his story he even wrote it down the way he was telling it and he was sticking to his story. I couldn’t really find any holes or maybe I just didn’t want to. The only thing I could do was wait until I could get the coaches side of the story. In this case I had to speak with 1 other person. So I was just anxious for the morning. In hindsight I could have taken him to a drug testing Tampa clinic, well, one like that as we would have to go to one nearer, or contact one nearer, and have him tested on the spot, but I guess at that moment I was too nervous and wasn’t thinking straight.
Yesterday morning I got up and after walking my kids to the bus stop I began to make my phone calls. I first I called the front office so that I could check the bell schedule because I was curious if my son was suppose to have his book bag in the gym at all. I was wondering if that was one of the issues. When I questioned my son about this as well and he told me that after 5th period they were allowed to get their book bags and bring them to class. So I asked to be sure. Then I left a message on the voicemail for the coaches in the gym. I asked for the voicemail of the coach that my son had said did the search but they sent me to the other coach that he had mentioned so I left a message on his voicemail as well and then later I left a message for the first coach he had mentioned. The second coach called me back first. I relayed the story that my son told me and he immediately came to the defense of the coach my son had mentioned. He said that this coach mainly deals with the girls in the gym since she is the only female coach and that he didn’t see her searching a boy’s book bag since she is half way across the gym dealing with the girls. He also said that he didn’t get anything from her or give anything to her to be thrown away and that they would never throw away anything that belong to a student. He said if they suspect anything is wrong that they always call in administrator for something like that for their protection and the child’s protection. So now I am getting upset because my suspicions of my son’s lying is being confirmed. Since I had him write down his story I was able to read exactly what he wrote to the coach. I was relieved that I wasn’t one of those parents who take their words for face value and immediately start cussing any and everyone out. After talking to the coach some more I thanked him for taking time out to speak with me and told him that I would still like to speak with the other coach. He informed me that it might be awhile because she was a proctor for a class that was doing ITBS testing. I told him I understood. I waited awhile and then left a message on her voicemail when she still hadn’t called by midday. It was still about an hour or two before she called me back. When she did I recounted my son’s story again and she said the same thing that the other coach said. Now I was positive that my kid was lying. I gave all three of them the benefit of doubt and two of the people told the exact same story. Still thinking that something happened to the hat. By the time he got home I come to the conclusion that he had lost his hat and that he lied so that he wouldn’t get into any trouble since he has a history of losing hats. So when he got home I asked him again what happened and told him what the coaches told me. He immediately told me that he got the names wrong and told me a totally different story. I told him that he should just admit that he just lost his hat. It took a couple of times but he finally admitted it. In the end he learned how telling stories such as this can get him into more trouble than he would have gotten in if he had simply just told the truth. He spent some time in his room yesterday and while in there he had to write a letter of apology to both coaches and then apologize verbally. I told him this situation could have turned out very differently.
I’m actually proud of myself for the way I handled this situation because as angry as I was the day before I managed to calm down and handle it properly. I don’t think if I would have tried to handle it the day before that I would have handled the way I did. We have had incidents in the past where Private J was searched for no reason before and then last year there was an incident wear my daughter had her belongings thrown away by one of the administrators so I think those incidents made me a little touchy but once I calmed down and got myself together I was able to do what I was suppose to do. How would you have handled this?