My son was kicked by some children in the neighborhood tonight. He tried to get up but they would kick his legs out from under him. He was more frightened than he was hurt, though tomorrow I am going to check for bruising because he said he could feel it and he often does not feel pain. Nothing showed on first inspection. This is sometimes an issue because when you think he should be hurt, he is laughing instead. You can see how this would escalate, though I do not know if that was the case this time. Another mother told me her son had been kicked by one of the other children before, and he kicks hard. I was holding him while he was crying, just after it happened, and as the perpetrators approached he cried more forcefully, becoming hysterical and saying he didn’t want them to come any closer.
That was PTSD. I could see it. Maybe he remembers his father kicking him, or kicking me. This is something to take to the psychologist tomorrow.
His brother tried to help during the incident by engaging one of the boys close to his size, and an older boy in the neighborhood who has known him for some years at daycare also helped a lot to get him away and find me (I was on the other side of the building with the other mothers). But the worst was that his best friend had joined in, she says she didn’t realize how serious it was. His brother said he was scared to do more than what he did. I need to ask him what more he thought he should do. I did tell him it would be good to run for me, screaming all the way, so I could help.
I just kept thinking this was his life. This is what I expect from other children when they encounter a child with special needs. I have to remind myself that others helped him, that others will help him. Every day I wonder if he will learn to be independent. He is okay engaging with people, he can pay for things and ask questions. It is the self care and the self preservation that I worry about. When I was his age I was getting beat like that at least once a day, by my older brother. I don’t know how anyone can watch a child cry so hard and not feel sympathetic. I don’t know how my mother always walked away. I don’t want him to become accustomed to such treatment, I want him to see it for what it is, and judge others by it as they should be.
I cannot make the world a safer place for my son. I can only teach him how to stay safe in it, the best I can.