Breaking A Child’s Spirit

I was raised Catholic. That just meant that I went to Catholic church on occasion, when my mother remembered to send me to church; of course I got baptized and I made my communion but not confirmation. My grandmother was a nun fanatic and about the Catholic Church. As I got older I stopped following the Catholic Church at all. What the hell is with this limbo …eternal fog? Who’s making up this shit? So I stopped going to the Catholic Church and I did many things. I became a born-again Christian I became an Orthodox Jew I kind of experimented with everything. And pretty much now I am a Christian I believe in the Trinity, and I also believe that the Universe is God so you can’t define what I believe, but I believe that every living thing is part of God. That’s not what I’m here to talk about.

I’m here to talk about the fact I sent my children to Catholic school. I did not go to Catholic school. Of course I did not go to Catholic school! I was poor! I went to regular school! So why did I send my kids to Catholic school. Well my town had had a long reputation for having an outstanding public school. It had a reputation for outstanding academic’s outstanding teachers and students who went on to excellent colleges. Guess what, that’s history. Things are not quite like that now or when my children were ready to go to school. Economics are not quite so good and our town has taken students from a neighboring town that does not have great demographics. So we have some difficulties. There were things that did not agree with me in the public school. A student was permitted to choose electives every year. These Lala Lala la courses. What the hell are Lala courses how are those courses going to prepare you to get into a good college or to prepare you for any college? In addition the students could come into school in sweatpants and flip-flops and that was OK! A note NOT ok w his mom. Further students were permitted to leave the school grounds during their lunch break and come back when the lunch break was over., WTF shit I said no no no no and no! These things are not happening on my watch. Because I am going to be the best mom that I can be that means preparing my children for life. For the best life that they can have. Not being the most popular the most cool the most social or any other stupid thing you can think of. And a definite definitely doesn’t mean being an asshole. So they went to Catholic school where they had to wear a button down shirt every day khaki pants black shoes with laces a tie their hair could not be longer then the bottom of their ears no earrings they had to walk in One Direction around the school so if your class was in room 101 and your next class was in 102 which to which was to the left which meant that you could just make a left to go to your next class no you have to walk all the way around to get to your next class because those for their bowls and I liked that they have rolls. I liked that there was order a light that there was respect I like that there was brotherhood.

There are also some things that I didn’t like now you can read about something very terrible that I didn’t like in my blog failingfifty.com called the Bergen Catholic story and then there something else that I will talk to you about which happened in elementary school. This is a very bad thing and I am sure that this has happened to many people, and I think this has probably happened to more men than it has happened to females. And that is belittling by a nun. And this is what happened to my older son. Now both of my sons were in an elementary school and it was very small; so each grade would wind up tracking with each other; if you were in first grade you were in the same class with the same kids in second grade, if you were in third grade, . etc. so with my older sons class when he first started there there were about five boys … by the time he got to seventh grade there were only two boys. My son and two girls or exceptional students, my son and these two girls, were also exceptionally proficient in math. So this one Nun decided that she would create an algebra program for my son and these two girls preparatory to high school. My son and these two girls took this class. My son really enjoyed the class, however, he would come home with papers – my son with straight A’s – would come home with papers from his algebra with red marks written all over them. Oh! yes the paper had an A on it! …. but it had comments all over it that were derogatory and insulting @what were you thinking,…” insulting and horrible and this went on for the whole year and yes he got an A at year end.

When it came time for my son to go to high school, and he had to take preparatory examinations to see what he qualified for and where they should place him he passed algebra. They said he was ready to go to the next level. He said to me … mom, I don’t want to go to the next level, I don’t feel like I know algebra well enough. I said but you had an A the whole time. He said I just don’t feel like I know it well enough mom. I knew he knew it but I knew she had broken his spirit. I know she did not like boys. She was mean to boys on the school playground, in the hallway … I saw. … I was inside the school at least 3x a week all year, I volunteered a lot …. because I was up at school parent of everything I was a fundraiser I saw her in front of all the kids all the time she just didn’t like boys. So I said to him well let me talk to the math apartment at the high school… so I talk to the head of the math part and I told him exactly what happened. And I asked him is there someone in the math apartment that can tutor him over the summer to help build his confidence and show him that he knows algebra and headed math apartment said of course I’ll do it but it cost me $1000. The head of the math department immediately told me your son knows algebra. And with the beginning of high school my son skipped algebra and move on.

Six years later, I happen to be driving by the school .. the elementary school that my sons had gone to and I saw THAT Nun putting the younger children onto a bus. I don’t know why ….. I have no idea why …..but I just decided to park in front of the church.

I get out of my car. And I waited for her to get all of the children into the bus and be finished with her duties. And then I walked toward the corner opposite from her and I said hello sister Kathleen? And she said yes, I said hello it’s me Kathleen Treubig she said hello do I know you. I said yes my sons were in school you … I said their names. She said oh yes yes I remember she said how are you today? Oh they are excellent excellent I said but I would like to tell you something. I would like to tell you about what you did. Do you remember that you had my son in your honors algebra class? And then I went on to tell her that she broke his spirit, and I told her that he had to take a special class over the summer because I had to remind him of his confidence; no I didn’t tell her what I spent. And then I told her that she and I both knew in her heart of hearts she did not like boys. And that that was not a loving or Christian thing to do. And I said you should not be teaching or among children. And she looked at me with wide eyes, And said oh my I’m so sorry I had no idea. And I walked away. And I don’t think about it anymore

Kat

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