Parents, don’t raise your children to be assholes!

Posted in Parenting by

Parents, our children learn so much from us. Not just from what we teach them, but from our own attitudes and how we move through the world around us. Our children are constantly watching us and picking up on our dialogues. That old saying – do as I say and not as I do – that doesn’t work with our children so we need to be constantly mindful of what we’re saying and how we portray ourselves to our children because they are learning from us all the time, even when we don’t want them to, even when we think they’re not.

On Saturday we went to Tres Jolie for lunch and to say that I was upset is an understatement. I’ve been grinding my teeth and obsessing over something I witnessed there and all I kept coming back to is that children are not born racist, that is a learned behavior and the horrid behavior I witnessed on Saturday was not because the children involved are horrid but because they have been taught a behavior that is horrid. Despicable!

Ava was having a ride on the mini carousel and I was keeping an eye on her by sitting in the section where all the rides and carousels are.  They have giant tractor tyres scattered around this area to use as impromptu seating. On the tyre next to where I was sitting was a large group of children and at first I thought they were all just chatting but on closer inspection, I realized something else entirely was happening. There were two little coloured girls, no older than 8 or 9 years old sitting on the tyre, surrounded by a group of white children, who ranged in age from 4 to about 10 years old. At first I thought I was imagining it but there was a serious little gang up bullying going on and I was SO disappointed that the bullying was feeding into every stereotype  we’ve all ever heard. The white children were Afrikaans and they were telling the two little coloured girls, in Afrikaans, that they are stupid because they are coloured and that they should get off the tyre and go away because they don’t belong there. I really couldn’t believe my ears and was sure my hearing must be playing tricks on me. But when the group of children started getting physically abusive with the girls, kicking them, hitting them and even scratching, punching and pinching them, I intervened.

It’s kind of hard to shit someone out when you’re doing it in your second language but I told those little shits off, I told them how disgusting their behavior was, how ugly they were being and that if they didn’t go away and get away from those little girls immediately I was going to beat their backsides and that they should go and call their parents NOW because I wanted a word with them. Of course, they didn’t call their parents, but they did all scamper off super-fast, all the while the two little coloured girls just sat there with big tears brimming in their eyes.

I looked for the parents so that I could tell them what had happened, I wanted to find them and take my two brown children with me, I was that angry, but I couldn’t find them. I wanted to tell them what horrible behavior I had witnessed from their children. I wanted to tell them that I know first-hand that children learn that behavior and usually from their parents. I wanted to tell them how revolting bullying it. I wanted to tell them that their horrible little children should be punished.

Mostly I wanted to hug those little girls and apologize to them. It hurt me. In a few years, that could me my two daughters, sitting there being told they’re stupid because they’re brown, being hit, kicked, scratched and punched.

I am so sad. I am so hurt by that behavior. But mostly I am so angry with those parents for what they’re teaching their children.

Ava witnessed the behavior, she wanted to know why…

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45 Comments

  • Reply nickyhster

    So sad. When he was about 6, my son told me that I wasn’t to kiss him anymore when I dropped him off at school. He said his friend told him not to kiss me on the lips because I’m black( I’m coloured, his dad is white, and our son is very light skinned). 6 year old’s can’t think of those things all by themselves, I do absolutely blame the parents.

    July 13, 2015 at 9:21 am
    • Reply Sharon

      That must have broken your heart!

      July 13, 2015 at 9:30 am
      • Reply nickyhster

        It did… but thankfully our little guy is quite level headed and a few days later he said he would kiss anyone he wants whether they are black or brown or white. And that was that.

        July 13, 2015 at 12:50 pm
  • Reply Nisey

    I hate that we live in a country where this kind of behaviour still happens.

    July 13, 2015 at 9:27 am
  • Reply Pandora

    Good for you, but sad that this even still happens. My daughter already thinks peach skin is better than brown skin. At 6. So obviously there are kids in her class that have told her that. Thanks for that, fellow moms. I hope it makes you feel superior.

    July 13, 2015 at 9:33 am
    • Reply Sharon

      Yep! We’re experiencing the same with Ava, she wants to know why she is “peacher” than Hannah and can’t understand how they can be the same because Hannah is “browner” than her.

      July 13, 2015 at 9:34 am
  • Reply Corrina

    Oh that makes me so sad to hear what went on. Racism is ugly on all levels and it is despicable that any parent should divide children at any age because of the color of their skin. It makes me sick to the core. I feel awful for those poor little girls – their innocence truly damaged by careless and unsympathetic individuals who clearly have (and sadly enough) been raised by idiots. Good for you for intervening – I would have done the same.

    July 13, 2015 at 9:44 am
  • Reply Izeth

    That is really sad. This racism knife cuts both ways. This country of ours will never get a chance to heel with parents not teaching their kids respect. That is all that is needed. Kindness and respect. You don’t need to “like” somebody or even be friends. Just respect everything and everyone that breaths. Animals and plants included, and most of all teach them to respect themselves. I have a little girl of almost three and every now and then I get the chills to think I will have to send her into a world full of hate.

    July 13, 2015 at 11:19 am
    • Reply Sharon

      It’s terrifying. I worry all the time!

      July 13, 2015 at 11:21 am
  • Reply reluctantmom

    I am often shocked by the way people speak in front of their children when they refer to people of colour, people who are from a different culture, religion and anything different from “them.”

    As you rightfully said, you need to realise that kids pick up on all this “small talk” that we don’t even realise we are doing and in time kids out this all together and end up with the same narrow mindedness that their parents exhibit.

    People continue to amaze and disappoint me at the same time ….. some times the exact same time.

    July 13, 2015 at 2:17 pm
  • Reply Susan

    This makes my blood boil! I am terrified sometimes of the horrible things my 8 month old daughter is going to see in the world. Those poor little girls. Good job telling off those kids Sharon!

    July 13, 2015 at 3:32 pm
  • Reply Jonelle

    This is so sad and so awful. Good on you for speaking up. Hopefully those children got the fright of their lives! Horrid!!

    July 13, 2015 at 6:50 pm
  • Reply brettfish

    Urgh. Stupid people. WELL DONE on intervening cos i don’t think most people would have and we need to all be a little bolder in terms of cutting that stuff down immediately when we see it and becoming a society that refuses to tolerate crap like that.

    Keep on
    love brett fish

    July 14, 2015 at 10:14 am
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