Several years ago, I had the privilege to respond to a mom whose daughter was mocked by another child on a school bus. Here is the comment from the little girl's mom:
The girl on the bus pointed at her birthmark -- the one just below her left eye -- and told her she looked stupid. The soft confession came from my little girl, who was staring at the floor. A groan escaped me and I grabbed my daughter close. And I did exactly what I shouldn't have: I cried. Will it get easier to be strong? Will it get easier to say the right thing in response to pain?
Below is what I wrote to encourage this mom:
A birthmark, curly hair, freckles, gangly arms, large feet -- these are all things that may seem less than perfect. In a culture that features Barbie dolls and makeovers of all kinds, "different" is often equated with weird. Children are particularly adept in pointing out things that are different.
Cruelty is hard to experience, especially when you see it directed toward your child. However, there are several important truths to consider that will help this mother and child respond well to such hurtful comments.
The first matter to address is cause of the cruelty. This cruel response was not caused by the birthmark, but by the sinfulness of the girl on the bus.