When I take my kids to the park, I’m that mom. The one who has no problem telling the teenagers to watch their mouths or asking the little kids to stop throwing rocks. I try not to be a pain and I don’t insert myself if there is a parent dealing with their kid, but if your kid can harm my kids or teach them words they shouldn’t know, you can bet I’ll say something. But today something happened at the park and I didn’t have a clue how to respond.
As Scorch was waiting for his turn on the monkey bars, a little girl around 10 years old came up to him and told him he was hot.
Are. You. Kidding. Me?
My jaw dropped and I had absolutely no clue how to respond. Scorch knows that “hot” is a not so nice way of telling someone they are pretty/handsome. He knows it’s slang and that it’s considered rude for kids to use. I realize that not everyone subscribes to our thought process about that word, but that is the line in the sand we drew because in my opinion, hearing a kid younger then 16 say that word about someone else is just plain creepy. Any how, Scorch asked her to repeat herself because he wasn’t paying attention. When he heard what he said, he just giggled a little, said “Oh” and proceeded to start on the monkey bars.
I had no idea if I should talk to this child (her parents were no where around). If I did talk to her, what do I say? Do I draw attention to this or will drawing attention make it a bigger deal then it was? Do I call Scorch over to me and talk to him? Do we leave? Do I ignore it? I really had no idea.
I ended up calling Scorch over- but before I could, this same girl told Scorch her friend (also 10+) liked him and did he think the friend was pretty? By this time I’m steaming, so when Scorch came over I asked him if he was OK and if the girls were bothering him. Then I proceeded to stick close by him the rest of the time we were there so the girls couldn’t say anything more to him. Thankfully they minded their manners while I was there and nothing more was said- until it was time to leave. When Scorch yelled goodbye, the girl yelled- “Goodbye, lover.”
Lover?! LOVER?!?! (can you hear the screech in my voice?!?!?!??!) Thankfully Scorch didn’t hear her, but again I was shocked. Scorch is 6 years old- 6! I’m not naive enough to think that he’ll never have to deal with the opposite sex- I read the news and the studies and I know that kids these days are growing up a lot faster. But 6 years old? I think not.
So tell me, what would you have done? Would you have spoken up? Avoided it all together? Have a follow up discussion with your kids later? I’m totally at a loss here.