-MARCH 2, 2021

A bully’s eye is their weakest spot. Remember the fate of the ogre that bullied Sipoi’s village? Hold on to that thought…

Allan appeared withdrawn, clingy, and insecure; he cried a lot when his father walked away to attend to his grind and had on a few occasions urinated and even defecated on himself. He had earlier on been a self-confident six-year-old boy that attended St Mark’s nursery school in Westlands.

He was in his final year just he needed to do interviews necessary to join grade one in any of the middle-class private schools around Westlands. His father was the first to notice this change in character, and when he asked what had changed, he received the traditional answer from the child’s mother, “You are the problem. You have spoilt that boy to the extent that he is retrogressing developmentally. Huyo mtoto anahitaji kiboko.”

The father went to work not convinced with the answer while the child was pinched as he was forcibly taken to school by his mother. The child cried a little and then withdrew to a sullen state until they got to the school where he threw tantrums before he was involuntary dragged to class by the school administration.

His father arrived early that day to pick him from school and the boy’s mood changed as soon as he saw his father. Together they bought ice cream from a vendor at the school gate and ate joyfully as they walked down school lane towards the Sarit Center. It was while they were walking that the child found the courage to speak to the father about the problem that he was experiencing.

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