By Cathy Paige
Two years after our encounter with Katie’s “situation,” I got an update on what was going on with her at school. Since second grade when my son and Katie were separated on the school yard, they were never placed in the same classroom. No problem there. I was happy to forget about Katie and her mother. But as it happened, in fourth grade an informed school staff person – let’s call her Ms. P – updated me on new developments.
In the middle of fourth grade suddenly a boy was transferred from the other fourth grade classroom to my son’s. I didn’t think much of it but it turned out to be a relevant story to this article. Ms. P told me that the transferred boy, Jay, had had to be separated from Katie. Apparently Jay had become Katie’s “best friend” – whatever that implied. Ms. P did not reveal to me if they had been caught in an “inappropriate situation” or not. But she did say that something Jay had reported to the school nurse had gotten the school worried.
Apparently Katie had gotten her period in fourth grade. She did not know what a period was and was terrified of the blood coming out of her body. She had confided her fears to Jay who had also been frightened. In fact, he was so freaked out by what Katie told him that he went to the school nurse. I can’t help wondering if the poor boy also felt terribly guilty, thinking that perhaps something that he and Katie had done together had hurt her so badly that had made her bleed. The nurse of course spoke to Katie and her mother, and then, for an undisclosed reason, Jay was transferred to my son’s class.
Ms. P told me that according to the nurse girls who are sexually abused develop faster than other girls. This means that not only do they engage in sexual activity sooner than other girls but their bodies develop faster. It was not surprising to the nurse that Katie would be getting a period at age 9 or 10. But other than talking to Katie and her mother about facts of life there was not much the school nurse could do.
I have no idea whether anybody had tried to make some kind of sense out of all this for Jay. All I know is that he too was transferred away from Katie. So what next?, we all wondered. Keep transferring boys away from Katie?
And this is still elementary school. The “what next” that most mothers wonder about is not so much what happens this year or next. We wonder what is going to happen in a couple of years down the line. What kind of girls are our boys going to encounter in middle school? Once puberty sets in, boys are going to be even more vulnerable to sexual advances from girls.
But the worst nightmare is this: By high school, are we going to find our sons fathers to babies born to teenage-mothers of extremely dubious character? Girls who have been brought up by some of the worst mothers in the world? Can you think of anything worse for your son or for your family?