To comfort or not?

[deleted account] ( 3 moms have responded )

My son J is 7 years old. He tested for his 1st Degree Black Belt in Taekwondo (TKD) this past weekend. The test was held in the auditorium of a local school across town. Apparently,J left his gear bag there. I thought dh had it, but apparently he had entrusted it to J. Today we conducted a search, and discovered that J sat the bag down when we ran into one of his friends in the hallway after the test.

J is devastated about loosing the bag. It had all of his gear in it--which will cost about $300 to replace--and his "special lunchbox" which was custom made with an image of his horse that has now passed away on it.

So that brings me to my question. J is in his room crying and feeling sorry for himself, generally hating himself for being irresponsible. I agree, he was irresponsible (however, I'm irked at my dh because he should have been carrying the bag--J is 7 and had just finished a 5 hour test after weeks of intense training, he was tired, relieved, and excited. I was juggling 2 camera bags and my purse while trying to order pizza, and dh had absolutely nothing in his hands!).

Anyway, do I console him or let him cry? On the one hand, he was irresponsible in loosing the bag, and I want him to learn from the mistake, but there is no way he can replace it himself financially, that's just impossible. He is responsible for the bag as a TKD student and needs to learn the importance of responsibility. On the other hand, it was a huge day for him and I really feel that dh should have helped out and carried the bag, or at least told me that he wasn't carrying it so that I could have made sure that J had it. Of course, no one should have to "make sure" J has his bag, he should just have it, right?

I'm conflicted. Let him cry or try to make him feel better?

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[deleted account]

I would see if he wants or needs comfort. The fact that he is beating himself up over it, shows responsibility and in itself is punishment enough.

He is 7, the fact that he put it down and forgot it isn't surprising. At that age yes, someone should still check and make sure. But instead of going back and getting it, send the child with an adult escort so to say (more for safety).

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View replies by

Jamilah - posted on 08/20/2012

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Thats so sad! I think it's ok to console him, but try to also make it a lesson in responsibility. It is sad to lose things that are important to us, but we have to be mindful of what we do with them so they don't get lost. Also maybe have him help around the house in a way to earn the replacement equipment for his martial arts. He is still a small child but not a baby so it's hard to find the right balance, But a hug and kiss never hurt anyone. Good luck!

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