This is my daughter’s lunch for today. Strawberries that red for January, I know right? She was so excited! I consider myself to be one very lucky mom. I have an 11 year old who jumps up and down when fruits and veggies come into the house. Food shopping is a dream, “Mom can I PLEASE get some fresh veggies for my lunch?”
At the beginning of the school year, I went and invested in a Planet Box. It’s more than the average lunch box for sure, but it’s meant to least for years. I expect her to use this through high school and she just started middle school. It goes into the dishwasher, so bonus there for easy clean up. Otherwise, it cleans up with soap and water. (I’m not an affiliate of any kind, just a HUGE fan of them.)
So, I was kind of shocked when she came home and said, “Mom, they are making fun of me because of my lunch! They said I’m too healthy”. Long screeching to a halt sound. Um, wait, what? They are bullying you because you are……TOO HEALTHY. *crickets* I mean, how do you respond to that? Tell her to throw a broccoli stalk at them? Maybe sprinkle some sunflower seeds down their back? Ugh.
I asked some questions and she told me that around her at lunch, there is a wide variety of kids who either have the school lunch from the cafeteria or bring their own, so it’s not like she’s the only one. She did tell me however that most kids have bags of chips and cookies and such. I do send cookies as well, just today was particularly healthy because of her choices. She gets little candy bars and other goodies. Since she eats rather healthy, I don’t feel bad at all giving her regular treats. But seriously, one boy at her table buys six bags of tortilla chips every day and that’s his lunch. (Guess who is the biggest tease about her food?)
So, basically I told her, “Look. Bullying comes in different forms. It’s how you react to it that counts. They are literally out of things to complain and tease about, so they have homed in on your FOOD. Talk about being out of material! So, tell them you love what you eat, tell them nothing at all. Ignore them or offer to share. No matter what you do, how you react will set the stage for future treatment.”
The next time he said something to her, she offered him a piece of her vegetables. He said, “Ewww, no!” so she replied, “Then if you don’t even LIKE what I’m eating, why are you even saying anything about it? Eat your chips and leave me alone”. Touche, my dear. He kind of didn’t have an answer to that one. He still eats his giant pile of chips every day, but he’s stopped saying anything about my daughter’s lunch. Until the next issue pops up, we are good for now.