Sunday, February 17, 2013

Social Issues

When I picked up Raphaela from Gan this afternoon, she seemed abnormally quiet and disturbed about something, and it took about ten minutes at home for her to open up to me.  She came over to me and said solemnly, "Thea is not my friend anymore."

[Thea is her best friend this year, a little girl who also speaks both English and Hebrew in the home, and who lives right down the block. Her parents are free-spirits of sorts, and a visit to their apartment is like stepping back into the sixties, where imagination and freedom of expression are encouraged, as well as artistic expressions such as coloring on the walls.]

I asked Raphaela what happened to cause this break in their friendship, and received several versions of the story;  what I understood is that Thea was pulling Raphaela toward a particular game and got too rough.  My daughter, having become over-sensitive to bullying from her previous supposed Montessori Gan, perceived it as unwanted and deliberate violence.

I explained to Raphaela that she needs to tell Thea if play becomes uncomforatble for her, and that I am certain that her friend did not mean to hurt her purposely.

Several minutes later, in a discussion of potential play-dates this week, Thea appeared prominently on the list as a welcome, desired and invited play mate and friend.

I can only hope that these social issues are as easily resolved when Raphaela reaches high school.

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