One upper elementary boy has been facing some very hard problems at home and is then creating some very hard problems for out program for our program, to the point that we may have to bar him from coming for a week. I cannot go into details, but I am frustrated because there is nothing we can do at this point — the school and home fronts need to step in on a level they’re just not doing. His actions down the street from the program space yesterday, while he was signed out and we could not take any responsibility for him, created such a problem that one youth’s parent had to pick them up (they signed out, wandered down, were subject to a one-sided fight, and then came back), and another parent stormed the space shouting (among other things) that we need different staff because all our youth are horrifically behaved and we can’t control them.
In front of all our kids.
Today I’m going to have a very brief talk with the other youth — they’ve been complaining that we have “too many rules” (including no swearing, no physical altercations even as a joke, no rough-housing on the lawn). I’m going to let them know that what the woman said was untrue, that much of what she said is an example of stereotyping and ageism…but that we as a program are only here as long as the community wants us to be. And that their actions represent our program both in and out of program time in such a small town like this one.
This morning I woke up from a strange nightmare in which — among other bizarre and sometimes violent occurrences — I found this student dead.
Coffee is necessary this morning. Lots of coffee. As for holding it together at work, I have no idea.