Last night, the Grasshopper came home with both a note talking about how he'd gotten in trouble for throwing sand during the field trip yesterday and with several pages of material drawn by a friend of his that my wife and I have never really approved of. We don't like this friend of his because the amount that the Grasshopper gets in trouble at school, and to a smaller extent at home, rises in direct proportion to how much they play together.

The drawings & captions, if given to their subject (a third kid), would absolutely qualify as bullying. Several drawings feature a pair of stick figures labeled "us." I found it very depressing when writing the Grasshopper's teacher last night to realize that the Grasshopper was probably one of the "us."

And yet, even after some of the discussion that we had (where both +Kirstin Dougan and I are afraid we're somehow saying the wrong things), the Grasshopper still tried to keep the pages from going back to school so that their teacher could deal with the appropriately (including sending upward to the principal if she thinks it necessary). I can't decide if it means we're teaching a good lesson about loyalty or a bad one, on top of all the rest of the mixed emotions about really not wanting to outright forbid him from playing with somebody when I know it's going to be impossible to police.

This is overall a slightly more coherent version of my bite-sized vent on Twitter last night.
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