In a previous post, I wrote about the ongoing discussion with a couple families at Youth School regarding this initial incident. So my boss called the two moms to try to discuss with them further. She only got a hold of one of them, but that one was the one who had misunderstood my statement about the brambles. Once my boss relayed that to me, I understood how the misunderstanding happened. I had said, "I was looking for some brambles to take them through." In my mind , I was picturing us on a *trail* through some brambles, sort a challenging, Follow The Leader sort of thing. But I understand how the mom could have been alarmed at the idea of me making her kid actually walk through a blackberry bush as some sort of punishment. So I offered to write a letter to the moms to clarify that statement, and to just re-iterate that my intentions weren’t punitive.
I spent a couple days writing a very honest letter that I felt like was coming from my heart. I tried really hard to stay emotionally open and take responsibility for the fact that, intentions aside, my plan didn’t work. But it was important to me that they understand that I’m not some sort of sadist intent on harming their children. I just made an honest mistake, which I have learned immensely from.
I was pretty blown away by their responses. I won’t quote them here, but they were not conducive to further conversation. Well, okay, just one quote, "I do not find your explanations to be credible." which I think is just a semantically complicated way of saying, "You are a liar." You know, once someone has decided that you are a liar, there’s really nowhere else you can go. "No, I’m not" seem pretty ineffective.
My mom made a suggestion for a response which would at least be momentarily satisfying, but we both agreed that it probably wasn’t appropriate, although it did at least provide a little comic relief to a situation that has my head spinning. But seriously, she and I agreed that anything more I say to someone who has already decided not to believe me will just fuel the problem.
My boss is on vacation until Monday, so I just sent her a note letting her know that I don’t know where else to go from here. She was copied in on the whole conversation, so she’ll have all the information I have, and maybe she’ll come up with a solution that I haven’t thought of.
Geez, this stuff should pay better.