I am a bit riled this afternoon after having an encounter with a young girl, about 9, in the playground of Rocky's school.
When growing up, I was taught to respect ALL adults and do what they say when they asked. I was taught that other people's parents MUST be respected at all times, you'd call them Mr and Mrs and show them gratitude and smile. If told off by an adult for something you would say sorry and do what they say or at least genuinely mean sorry. Even as a teen, as gobby as I was, if a friend's parent told me off I was mortified (you know who you are).
So when did that not become the norm? I am only 30 FFS, it wasn't that long ago that I was that kid scared to disappoint or upset the adults around me. Don't get me wrong there were always kids that didn't care about that stuff but everyone was shocked by them, now kids are shocked by people who do respect adults.
"You can't tell me what to do, you aren't my mum" seems to be the new "sorry Mrs Pattison".
So back to this young girl. A boy dropped his chocolate wrapper on the floor right in front of me whilst on the climbing frame in the playground. I asked him to pick it up, twice. I then said "excuse me mate, can you pick up your litter or I can go and get your headmaster if you like". "yeah OK" the boy said sheepishly as he walked towards the rubbish. His mum wasn't too far away, nothing from her, that is a different story. The girls he was playing on the climbing frame with just stared at him, then went over to him whilst he stood over the wrapper he dropped. One very distinctive girl muttered something I didn't hear and bent down and picked it up. At first I thought "that's nice, she did it for him", then as he walked in the opposite direction and towards a bin, I thought "how weird". She continued to walk past me and scrunched the paper up in her hand. As she got just past me, she turned, made eye contact with me and threw the paper towards me with a face I can only describe as '90's American high school rom-com attitude', think Mean Girls or Clueless. I was genuinely shocked. I even laughed slightly in the shock. As she turned and walked away I said "excuse me pick that up please" she just carried on walking. So I shouted louder, nothing. So I shouted "it's OK love, I know your name and I think the Headmaster will be pleased to hear how respectful you are in his playground". She heard me, she started running off with her mate in panic. That last bit makes me believe she knew she was wrong but the pure cheek of it made me rile afterwards. I hate litterbugs but I hate disrespectful little bitches more.
OK so I am not the best at adulating at the best of times but I was the adult in this situation and whilst with my children I expect respect from their peers. I am one of those parents who will tell a child off if they are being naughty in my presence, especially if it effects the parenting of my own children at the time. I can't expect them to behave and respect me at all times if they see others doing the opposite and I just let them.
Now, if one of my boys did this to ANY adult, in or out of my company I would ground them for a week and make sure all their toys were locked in the car until further notice. I would report them to the headmaster myself and make sure the discipline was throughout. However, knowing Reading the way I do, I know that most off the parents at this particular school will pat this kid on the back, call me an interfering bitch and do nothing about it. The school however will, I have full trust in the discipline the headmaster and his staff have in the school and I know as soon as it's mentioned that child will be hauled into the office and given the disappointment riot act. So why am I battling with the idea of telling them?
If I start saying "oh, kids will be kids hey?!" surely I'm adding fuel to the ever growing bitch producing fire? If she is like this now, what on earth is she going to be like when she's a teenager? She has no chance with that attitude to authority already, she'll do it to the wrong person and end up beaten up or in prison. So if I stomp my feet and make sure it's flagged up it's helping her in the long run right? Or am I just annoyed that she's a bigger bitch than me and being a child about it?
Euuuugghhhh why has this riled me so much. All that is going through my head right now is "I can't let that little bitch beat me". I told you adulating wasn't my strong point.
Anyway, to sum up this post, discipline your kids folks, teach them to respect their elders and make sure they know if they are anywhere near me and I see them drop litter, I will make them pick it up and eat it... *joke, obvs... or is it?!* ;)