Did he just say "douche-bag"? Yep, sure did. Here's the story:
One night on the way home from soccer practice, it was just #1 and I in the car. He had hopped in after practice and was awfully quiet. That usually means it was a rough practice. So I said nothing. A few miles down the road he blurts out, "_______ is such a douchebag!"
I think I choked on my own spit, I was so caught off guard! After regaining my composure, I asked him why this was so? He went on to say that one of the team members would say not-so-nice things about him just to make the other team members laugh.
What I said next might be controversial. I said, "yep, he sure is a douchebag." Now hang on, I do redeem myself...a little. :)
"...but you really shouldn't call him that." was my follow on response. We went on to have a lengthy conversation about the kid and why he might be saying those things, what #1 might have done to prompt those things (because he sure isn't innocent), and what #1 wanted to do about this predicament. Thankfully, he didn't want to give up and quit the team. But he did want to punch him in the face, hard. I told him that maybe we could come up with something different, although part of me wanted to punch the kid in the face too!!
I started to tell him about a lady at my work last year. (Inside my head I knew that the last thing he wanted to hear was a long lecture about 30-40 year old women at a school, but he needed to hear the end of the story.) Here's the gist of the story:
Last year there was a lady at my school that I just didn't click with. She didn't seem to like me much and threw me under the bus once. I didn't like her. But, I knew that I as a Christian, my job was to 'love my neighbor'. That sounds so much better coming out of my mouth to my kids than from the Holy Spirit in a convicting way..... Anywhooo. With a not-so-happy heart, I started to pray for her last year--nothing too eloquent or in depth, but still prayed for her. Throughout the year, I intentionally was polite to her when I didn't have to be. And by the end of the year, my heart had softened towards her. We now aren't best friends or anything, but there was no festering sore or drama. That's what I wanted him to hear.
So I simply told him that even if he didn't want to hear it, my advice to him was simply to pray for the kid.
So after the next practice, he hopped in the car and I gently asked how practice had gone. He replied that it went much better and had decided to try taking a different approach with the kid--to laugh along with him and take his comments in a lighter manner than taking it so sensitively. I'm hoping he is praying for the kid too. I am.
Mom of the best 14 year old in the world (and 12 year old, 9 year old and 6 year old, too!)