Well, I shoulda'…

I’ve never left a playground in tears before… or upset. This was a HUGE first for me.

Let me set the scene…

Alexander, my 3-year old is obsessed (beyond obsessed) with being Indiana Jones. He wears the Indiana Jones hat and jacket every single day. I mean, literally… every single day. My mother-in-law bought him one for Halloween, he wore that one to shambles, so my mother bought him a new one. So we’re on Indiana Jones costume #2 since October.

Like every other day, Alexander wanted to wear his costume to the playground. I was fine with that. He loves to run around and sing the song (Dah… nah, nah, NAH!) and have me call him, “Indy.” It’s something that just tugs at my heart because it’s so cute and so innocent and he’s so “real” with it. I know someday he won’t be “Indy” anymore, and I will have such an amazing time relaying all the stories back to him… which, of course, he may deny — but thanks to my FLIP, he can’t. 😉

So the playground. The boys were blowing bubbles and chasing them. Alexander was doing his Indiana Jones moves and singing… when an 8-year-or-so old boy started laughing at him. Alexander, who’s a pretty bold 3-year old, told him he was “Indiana Jones.” The boy began laughing harder and called his younger brother over. His younger brother looked a little older than William, so I’m assuming he was about 6-years old. Well, these 2 brothers proceeded to laugh and make fun of MY Indiana Jones.

I saw it happening from about 30 feet away, so I immediately went over.

Alexander kept insisting he was Indiana Jones.

They kept INSISTING he wasn’t and kept laughing.

I was horrified. These 2 older boys, making fun of my 3-year old son. You know when you’re heart actually feels like it’s breaking? That was mine. I had sunglasses on, and underneath them I had tears in my eyes. The kind of tears where if you blink, you won’t be able to stop them from pouring.

I told Alexander to come back with me and play with his brothers, and told the boys, “He is Indiana Jones, MY Indiana Jones.” And then I couldn’t help it and said to the boys, “Where’s your mother?”

They answered, “She’s not here.” And they were off to another area of the playground.

Fortunately, Alexander didn’t have any idea he was being “taunted”… he just went off playing again and singing. But… his older brother William made it clear in the car on the way home that those boys were “mean.” And you know what? I didn’t dispute it. They were mean. They were rude. I wasn’t upset at all with William making that statement.

I only got upset when Alexander agreed with him by saying, “Yes, William, they were freaking mean.”

Just the laugh we needed after that… but, oh my God… not the kind of word he needs to be repeating!

And for those boys out there… I did feel like lecturing them on kindness and picking on little kids, but I didn’t. I figure kids like that will eventually get theirs. My main concern was getting my little Indy away from them and playing again with his brothers and the other little kids chasing bubbles and going up and down the slide. Innocent things. Like having an imagination.

About Audrey

Audrey McClelland has been a digital influencer since 2005. She’s a mom of 5 and shares tips on her three favorite things: parenting, fashion and beauty. She’s also a Contemporary Romance Author.

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  1. 4.1.09
    Brian said:

    My nieces just turned three and I don’t want to see them let out into the world. Everything about them is so nice and innocent still!

  2. 4.1.09
    Gail said:

    I’ve seen this on the playground before, but never that bad! I think they boys probably wouldn’t have been so mean if their mom had been there – at least I would hope! I’m actually miffed that a 6 & 8 year old were alone on the playground. I still accompany my kids or for the older kids I’m within sight. Good for your boys for behaving nicely!

  3. 4.1.09
    Sara said:

    Aww poor little Indian Jones! Kids can be so mean sometimes. At least he did not take it to heart and continued to play. I love his imagination! How cute!

  4. 4.1.09

    I’m so sorry to hear that this happened. It’s amazing how cruel kids can be. My son was a bullied both in 3rd and 4th grade because of his tourette’s. It’s amazing how some parents of bullies just don’t care. It starts at home to teach compassion and acceptance. Just know that you’re kids will grow up to be great citizens of our country. Hopefully the other kids land themselves with a great role model at some point in their life to teach them how to think of others and not just themselves.
    I would have left crying also.

  5. 4.1.09

    Oh…Audrey…yeah…when a mama heart breaks 🙁 (feeling your pain ’cause I’ve been there, done that).

    The thing that ran across my mind was WHERE was their mother? Was she working? Is she parenting the way she “needs” to to help shape her sons to act kindly? Is she a single parent? Or, what else is going on in their home to make them do cruel things? I usually tell my kids when classmates treat them badly, there’s probably something going on at home that contributes to it.

    Either way, I LOVE your little Indy! And I’m GLAD he’s got YOU to protect him when he needs it…even if he’s oblivious for now :).

  6. 4.1.09
    Kathy said:

    I too am so sorry. That just breaks my heart.

    I’m a pretty reasonable person, but someone messes with my boys and I become a mama bear (Reminiscent of the Hulk’s ‘You don’t want to see me when I’m angry 🙂

    Way to go mom for raising your children well. And keep on little Indiana!

  7. 4.1.09

    Hugs, Audrey. Watching your child be hurt or teased or excluded by other kids is right up there on the list of top hurts a mom can feel.

  8. 4.1.09
    Angela said:

    I have to say Audrey, you were a HELL of a lot nicer than I would have been. Teasing and bullying…NOT tolerated by this mama bear. I’m so sorry this happened.

  9. 4.1.09
    ErikaRae said:

    That is awful! I don’t know what I would have done, but I probably would have told them that they were not being nice, and that he is just a little boy using his imagination. It explains a lot that their mother wasn’t around, though. So sorry that happened! 🙁

  10. 4.1.09
    Valerie said:

    I would not have handled it so well. I hate it when kids tease. I am sorry your little Indy got taunted and I could feel your pain while reading it. Many hugs to you!!

  11. 4.1.09
    Sharon said:

    I’m so sorry to hear that happened! We homeschool specifically so that I can keep my kids young while they still are.
    I would have gone ballistic- you handled it very well!

  12. 4.1.09
    Annie said:

    Well, they were ‘freakin’ mean!

    How sad for them at 8 and 6 that they’ve lost the thrill of imaginative play. I feel sorry for them.

  13. 4.1.09
    Heather said:

    Alexander is right, those boys are freaking mean. That moment just may come back to that eight year old one day when he’s a dad at the playgroud with his three year old and sees him getting teased.

  14. 4.1.09
    ErikaRae said:

    Kids can be so mean. We were at the grocery store today, and my daughter and I were waiting for her turn to ride the electric horse. Two brothers were riding it at the time, and their turn finally ended, and they just sat there and grinned at us. This made me furious, and I finally said with a fake smile, could you please get off so that she can have her turn? And they just grinned more and looked at me. Talk about disrespect to an adult! They didn’t get off, so I told them to get off ( in a nicer way), and their mom finally noticed (she was in the check-out line) and told them to get off. But I was mad, just that kids are very disrespectful to adults, not to mention withholding my daughter her turn.

  15. 4.1.09
    Janine said:

    Kids can be MEAN! We all know that. I think as moms we never realized how hurtful it would be to see our own children taunted or hurt.

    Where was that mother? That’s whats wrong with those kids….

  16. 4.1.09

    Ahhhhh……the audacity. I know they are kids but STILL. Glad your lil guy has such a specatacular imagination.

  17. 4.2.09

    Poor little Indy!!! And where was those other boy’s mother??

  18. 4.2.09
    Annette said:

    Your little Indy sounds adorable, I love it when kids have an a imagination … oh ya, and MANNERS. Where were the other kids parents? One of my pet peeves, parents who do not parent their kids.

    My two oldest kids are two days shy of a year apart. I frequently tell them to be each others best friend (they are) and to watch out for each other and their little sister and to stick up for each other. It makes me feel a bit better when they are out together that there are two of them and if some kid wants to mess with one of them, they get the other too.

    You handled the situation very well.

    By the way, I enjoy your blog. I stop in every now and then.

  19. 4.8.09
    Kara Noel said:

    Ug! I’m so sorry. You handled it so well!!

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