Yeah, that's never a good sign, is it?
It seems he's been randomly bursting into tears in class over the past few weeks. He's been upset because his house doesn't have a second floor or stairs and other kids in his class does. He's been upset because he got a lovely amber necklace for his birthday and kids asked him why he had a necklace on. He's been upset because he's the only kid in his class with a name starting with B and when the class plays dodgeball (I think) he doesn't have anyone to run with (this also happens to the only child with a name starting with I and the only child with a name starting with L, as well).
He's been telling us these things at home as well, so we already knew about the things that were upsetting him, but until this afternoon, we didn't know about the common denominator.
Apparently, a new kid joined the class this term. Bryn has mentioned this kid a number of times, but not directly in relation to his dissatisfaction with his name or living abode. Turns out the new kid has decided that Bryn's best mate is now his best mate and Bryn is a third wheel. This child has taken to taunting Bryn with the things that make this child and Bryn's best mate similar and which make Bryn different. So, the new kid and the best mate don't wear necklaces. The new kid and the best mate have names with more common first initials and always have someone to run with in dodgeball (though not each other), and the new kid and Bryn both live in houses with stairs and second storeys.
When the new kid taunts Bryn, Bryn gets really mad and has punched or otherwise 'attacked' the new kid. The new kid then tells the teacher and, of course, Bryn gets into trouble. When Bryn tells the teacher about the taunting, the new kid lies and says he didn't taunt Bryn and without evidence the teacher is unable to act.
I've told Bryn when the new kid is annoying him, he needs to walk away because he can't be laying hands on the new kid. I've tried to explain that even though the new kid is being mean, Bryn can't punch him or otherwise physically attack him because then Bryn will get into trouble.
Bryn feels he has no friends now (I'm fairly certain his best mate is still friends with him - at least from his perspective, but Bryn feels like they aren't friends anymore). He is resistant to the idea of making new friends.
I feel so impotent.
I want to make the new kid be inclusive of Bryn, but of course, I can't.
I want the best mate to tell the new kid to leave his friend Bryn alone, but I can't.
I want Bryn to feel safe and included and as if friends last forever, but they don't and every time you make a new friend you risk getting your heart broken - that's life. You've just got to keep swimming and know there will be new friends, and maybe new heartache, but may not.
I want Bryn to make other friends so he can move on from this hurt, but it takes courage to put yourself out there and make new friends, especially if you feel old friends have abandoned you.
I want to make my child's pain go away.
If only parenting was that easy!