Bullied because of Grandma

Tender Face

Account Closed
Mar 14, 2006
NW England
Well, worst fear ….. my son is suffering more than I thought - not just with home life and how my mum’s dementia affects the family in practical and emotional terms ….. but events at my son’s school today have left me reeling …… turns out son has been bullied at school (and on MSN the last couple of days thru so-called ‘friends’ from school although I thought I kept a pretty watchful eye I can‘t read or decipher EVERY message without sitting on his shoulder…… ) ….. because his peers see fit to see his grandma’s dementia as something to ridicule him for ….. son has been so distraught at school today ….. involved Head of Year as well as sundry other members of staff …… proud of him for ‘taking deep breaths’ and getting thru’ his afternoon lessons with much telephone support from me and ‘counselling’ from the staff …..

Another spoke in the wheel of caring to deal with …. any ideas ……?

One horrified mother…:(

Karen, x


Registered User
Feb 24, 2006
I'm sorry to hear this Karen. I would be just as horrified as you if this happened to my son. Have you any idea what sparked this off? How are the school handling it?


Registered User
Jun 27, 2006
Oh god Karen, a mother's worst nightmare. Children can be.. well lets say you can understand why some animals eat their children at birth.

No words of wisdom I'm afraid. There's no denying that schools can be vicious ("happiest days of their lives"? I don't think so)

Probably the most difficult thing when a child is being bullied is that they often refuse to let their parents interfere, although it sounds like you've jumped that particular hurdle. So congratulations to your son for having the maturity to bring it to you.




Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland
Ask the head if you can give a talk on dementia to your son's year-group? Get them on his side.

On the law of averages, there must be other kids with dementia in the family.


Registered User
May 19, 2006
Hell's bells, Karen, what a worry for you and how nasty for your son..really sorry you all have to deal with this. Hope the school is getting involved and you'll find some way to protect him and he will get on ok. Thinking of you.
Love, Tina xx


Registered User
Jul 19, 2005
Hi Karen, Don't know if this will be any help but it happened to my son as well at school ( it was his gran as well that had Dementia) then at work by his boss ( now his Dad has it and they worked together) so i know what you are going through. I complained and had to go to meetings at the school a teacher even used to do to him what my mum was doing to my son that teacher left that year. My son was 6 years old when it all started and it went on throughout high school. He has now been out of work for 2 years. Tell the school head that it could affect him badly my son's life got ruined.

Tender Face

Account Closed
Mar 14, 2006
NW England
Thanks folks ... I just despair how cruel people can be sometimes...... how they get to be so nasty when they are still knee-high to grasshoppers ..... ????

School (well one teacher in particular I spoke to this afternoon) brilliant .... strategy for tomorrow includes sonny reporting to the 'school bobby' ... the MSN stuff in particular is apparently a well-known source of the bully-boy .... more importantly for my son there ARE school counsellors he can seek out if he needs to talk at school ..... (including about his mum's attention being diverted :eek: )

Hazel, you're absolutely right - what I would love to do is show 'bully-boy' - and any other peers who need some education in 'real life' - he is nothing but a little wimp with nothing better to think about - when MY son, sadly, has the sensitivity to understand and therefore become upset at some of the more difficult aspects of life ..... makes him vulnerable just now because of the emotions .... and 'Grandma' of course varies between a distraction, a concern, a source of great love and alternatively great source of sorrow ...... mixed with a fair dose of near-teenage hormones... so wonder it is bewildering for him ..... and easy for someone to 'hit him' emotionally when he is down .....

God willing, it is making for him to be a concerned and understanding young man ... just wish I could protect him from such a rocky path ......

Gotta go ... some serious board games to play!!!!!!

Love, Karen, x


Registered User
Feb 17, 2006
Oh I do feel for your son and yourself xxx . Having 4 children I know how they can be so cruel to each other at school, never about dementia. One of my daughter got bullied about her weight , lucky she had sister at school to stick up for her , but she still feel the emotional pain even now she is 21 . sounds like a good school to be
addressing the issue with school counsellor , they naver had those when my daughter was younger

Grannie G

Volunteer Moderator
Apr 3, 2006
I really agree with Hazel on this one, but am afraid I have to go even further.

In the first place, bullying of any sort is a whole school issue. Those of us who have been bullied know the long term effects.

Secondly, there must be a teacher at the school with responsibilities for Personal and Social Education [PSE]. This episode of bullying should be absorbed into a Whole School Programme of anti-bullying, without naming names, but addressing the current issue.

For a child to have to report to a `school bobby` is just not good enough. The school should follow the guidelines of its` Anti-Bullying Policy

I`m sorry I`m coming down so strongly on this [ I`m not really, I`m just sorry if I cause more upset] but we hear horror stories of children self harming because they are being bullied. I am not for a minute suggesting this would be the outcome for your son Karen, he, at least had you to confide in, but how many other children are being bullied, who are unable to get help. If there`s bullying in the school, it will not be one isolated incident.

If it`s not `grandma`s dementia` it could be a sibling with learning difficulties, or an overweight classmate.


Registered User
Aug 29, 2006
SW Scotland
Internet bullying is apparently quite widespread, even to the extent of attacking teachers. Schools are very quick to act when a teacher is involved -- they should be even quicker to defend a vunerable child.

But I still think education is needed here, most children will respond if given the facts. (Or am I 20 years out of date?)


Registered User
Mar 7, 2004
Karen, just feel for your son and for you. Bullying should never have to be tolerated. My eldest grandson is physically and menatally handicapped. He mainstreems school, just. with a lot of backup from the family...........

What did our PM say. education, etc, etc, but it has to go further. We all need educating in all aspects of life. Your son has a wonderful mum, we on TP can testify to that, and I am sure he will pull through.

Thank you for alerting to another of lifes inadequecies.


Registered User
Feb 8, 2006
I really feel for you.
My ordeal is largely over now but I get so angry and feel helpless when I read stories like yours on TP.

Bullying is a school issue, its serious and should be tackled at source by head of school, year, form etc. It is simply unacceptable for anyone to be treated like that and for you and your family to have to put up with the additional stress. Kids can be very cruel and its up to the school to sort it out promptly and thoroughly.

I have two teenagers at school and fortunately we had one instance of bullying some years ago and it was sorted out promptly and in no uncertain terms. My son has never looked back.

I really hope you can find the strength todeal with this along with everything else and you get the support from the school you deserve.

Sending supporting vibes. Keep smiling


Registered User
Feb 28, 2005
west mids
Hi karen,
we touched on this ever so slightly too, but not to the degree that you have. Mum spends most of Sat/Sunday with us, and my sons friends, in the early days have ridiculed her behind her back.
This left me seething, and one weekend was about to jump on the little devils when I overheard them sniggering.
No need to worry, my lovely son , (11) who has been my rock through three years of coping with mum, looked at them all with utter disgust and said"would you be laughing if my nan had cancer or a bad heart?"
"Well my nans got a bad brain disease and you shouldnt be laughing at her".
Words of wisdom from a little boy, did the trick, silenced the snigggers, and we havent had a problem since.
Good luck with your son
LOts of love
Ally xx


Registered User
Aug 3, 2006

Hi Karen,
Reading your post has made me so mad, so I'm just going to reply as I often do from the top of my head. I'm aware my situtation is not the same, but if I heard of any of my great grandchildren being bullied, I'd bundle my wife into the car and land up at the school. Not sure how schools work, but would seek out the Head and point out that one day he or one of his family have a good chance of landing up the way my wife is, and invite him to take a good look. Also suggest he gets his staff in while I give them a lecture on Alz.

When I take Jean out for a walk or shopping the fact some people look the other way prompts me to say " It's OK love we're invisable, but we can see them"
Some children look down at the floor, a mirror image of the parents.

We often pass a childrens school and a number of boys and girls who have got to know us tear across the playground to greet us. In the begining they asked lots of questions: "Can she talk? Can she hear what we say?What's wrong with her? If she can't move how can she eat?" One little Black Boy: "How dose she brush her teeth?" In answereing all their questions I explain that when their Grand parents become old the start forgeting things, their mind is wearing out and they forget how to talk and walk. What you should do for them, is love them all the more and give them lots of huggs. It's lovley to see Jean's face as she watches the children, I look forward to the Summer when we go by there every day. The teachers now talk to us.
Karen, you will know you have not failed your boy as the bully's parents have failed their child. In time you will say "You are a man my son". A tip for what it's worth always put the positives beside the negatives and your sure to bathe in the warm light of contenment. Made that up, it works for me!
Hang in there and be strong. God bless and I wish you well.

Tender Face

Account Closed
Mar 14, 2006
NW England
Thank you all ....

... for your responses and support ....

My son seems 'settled' - and at least has the confidence that HE has done the right thing and put matters into the hands of adults who are the ones to deal with it ..... how to take away the pain of what cannot be undone and unsaid is of course another matter........

(Nada, that link was brilliant, thank you .... even if sonny doesn't get engaged in it, it gave a new perspective to me to support him and recognise for myself the impact 'caring' is having on him/us as a family ...... and Lonestray ... dad pinned me up a copy of Kipling's 'IF' about the same age as sonny is now .... perhaps I ought to continue the tradition for his grandson?)

Admit to allsorts of ambivalent feelings these last couple of days, which I won't share here, other than that, I am glad that my mum is 'blissfully unaware' of yet another 'blow' this cruel illness has wraught ..... she would be so distressed to know her grandson was suffering in some way too .....

Not much of a positive, but it's something..... and along with Connie's thread, a timely reminder to me that I am not primarily my mother's carer, but primarily a mother myself ......

Thanks again . .....

Love, Karen, x