"Mom, today I made a teacher cry": the daughter tells of her caring gesture towards a classmate
Teaching children to be more empathic should be a top priority in the family and also at school, because very often emotional intelligence is much more valuable than an a particularly high IQ. The world and the whole of humanity, surely, would gain in all respects. Fortunately, we are witnessing several cases where this empathy has emerged at just the right time. Kristin Banga Adair always plays a game with her daughter when she goes to pick her up from school: to tell the outstanding moments of the day and the lowest moments, of which she is less proud. One day, Kristin's daughter told her mom that she had such a "high" and important moment, which had overpowered any other experience she had during that day. The words with which she began, however, had strangely alarmed Kristin: "Mom, today I made a teacher cry at school." In fact, Kristin may be more than proud of her daughter.
Kristin's daughter told her mom that that day, in her art class, a classmate with Tourette's syndrome fell to the ground and started screaming. Because of the Syndrome, which is a neurological disorder characterized by repeated multiple tics, such as sudden and aimless sounds and muscle spasms, the boy behaves in a "strange" and unnatural way as far as most of his classmates are concerned. That day, in the throes of a sudden attack, the boy threw himself on the ground and everyone laughed at him. Kristin's daughter, witnessing that scene, realized how unfair that reaction was towards the boy and she decided to act differently. Instead of mocking him, she lay down on the ground with him! Immediately, everyone else stopped laughing or making fun of that boy.
At that moment, a support teacher, as well as the boy's mother, who had appeared in the class and who had witnessed the scene, immediately rushed in tears to hug Kristin's daughter. She thanked her for her kind gesture, as not everyone is able to accept her diversity when they are a child.
The young girl reported to her mother that the hug she received from that teacher was so close and full of affection, that it even surpassed the hugs from "Aunt Jenna". Kristin had a moment of tearfulness listening to her daughter's story, but she managed to drive home. She naturally told her daughter how proud she was of her and the way she had acted.
A story that underlines the importance of parent-child dialogue, especially on what concerns "difference": children must be educated to be empathic and respect diversity. Being empathetic means knowing how to see reality with the eyes of others and knowing how to listen with other ears. In short, it means knowing how to feel the world with the heart of another.