Every now and then there are days where I feel like I do more counseling than teaching. Today was one of those. And while I'm glad I have the kind of rapport with my kids that they feel like they can open up to me, I take a beating emotionally from experiencing the pain they're carrying with them.
I found out FightingSquirrel had assault charges pressed for the fight he got into the other day. He's 17, so a warrant will be issued Tuesday. I've had him the past 3 years...he's not a bad kid...he just has an anger mgt. problem. He and I talked today about this being his wake-up call...that apparently he didn't listen before, and God had to use something big to get his attention. I think it "got gotten". (I just wish it hadn't involved one of my other favorite kids and her boyfriend. Tardygirl's a sweetheart, and did not need to witness her boyfriend getting beat up.)
Buggy and PissyAttitudeGirl got into a scuffle over a magic marker, and she tried to smack him in the face. He HATES this...sees it as incredibly disrespectful. He blocked her, and grabbed her hand. This resulted in her acrylic fingernail being bent backwards. She got mad and pushed him. He walked out of class PISSED OFF, and didn't return until passing period. When he did come back, and I tried to talk to him, he was totally unwilling to discuss it. And, me being me, I pushed it...needing to let him know that I understood why he left and that he did it to keep from doing something stupid...but I needed him to communicate with me. He got pissy and was rude to me. (Which has NEVER happened before...and caught me by surprise.) I called him on it, and we finished the conversation. Kind of. Trust me, there are still things he needs to hear.
Tardygirl came by UPSET because kids are rubbing it in that her boyfriend got beat up so badly. We talked for a good stretch...she feels responsible, because everyone's telling her the boys fought b/c FightingSquirrel had a crush on her. She also feels hurt because they were friends, and he knew that she couldn't stand to see that happen in front of her. Yet, he did it anyway.
During the course of that conversation, in response to a question I asked, she divulged some info about Buggy that I had suspected...but didn't know for sure. (Apparently, he has been trying like crazy to keep it from me..because he knows how I feel about it.) I'm now trying to reconcile the Buggy I know with the Buggy that exists outside of Uberschool, as well as trying to figure out if I should confront him about it.
While yes, I think he needs to be held responsible for miseleading me...I'm not sure that's as big a priority for me as the caution he's exercising in decision-making because he thinks I don't know. Maybe it's more effective if we get further down the road and I say "yeah, I've known for a while"...and he sees that I haven't changed how I act towards him. Maybe. Maybe that'll make a difference with this kid who is eversomuch closer to the line than I ever thought.
Sometimes I really wish I could walk away from these kids...but I know God's got a purpose for me here. I just wish it didn't hurt so much. Ya know?