This will be my first Discussion as a new member of your community and it is a very personal subject for me. About two monthes ago I had to step up to the plate so to speak on defending my beliefs for the sake of my daughter. First off I guess I should say a little about her. Her name is Rebekka and she is 14 years old. She doesn't play follow the leader and generally has her own style. She is the middle child of 3 teenage girls and the only one to fully embrace the path of Wicca. (I don't push my religion on my childern but allow them the freedom to choose for themselves) Her style is somewhere between goth and punk in her own interpretation, which most of the time can be quit entertaining. She is an openly loving and giving person who general doesn't care who likes her and who doesn't. She is very much my mini me. She recently expressed her views to someone that she thought was a friend, who in turn went to her mother, who in turn went to the school counciler. I was rushed in for an emergency meeting to discuss "help" for my child. The main subject of concern, that she stated that she believed in witch craft. Not that she is a witch mind you but, that she believes in it. The school wanted a psycholocigal evalution done because they thought that she was incapable of distinguishing fact from fiction. Now understand that when I walked into the school I did not know what their concern was, only that there was a problem. I proudly wear a pentacle and I had made no attempt at hiding it (honestly I never take it off so I didn't give it any thought). There was no point in denying that I believed as well (not that I would have). This little girl that started the trouble told her mother that she was afraid that if she made my daughter mad then she'd be cursed by my child...hmmm don't you have to believe it exists to believe you can be cursed? But she wasn't being suggested for an evaluation. I told them how misinformed that information was because no witch would put anything out there that they didn't want back times three and that our motto clearly states harm ye none. To this the councelor simply snorted and looked down his nose. To shorten a very long story it took me reminding the school that there is a such thing as freedom of religion in this country and that religion was banished from schools so they didn't have the authority to order an evaluation based on religious beliefs. My point to this bulletin? Looking for opinions, similar experiences, or maybe better ways to handle it next time it becomes an issue.
Patti, I do believe that you handled the situation in the right manner so to say. This country has a right to religious freedoms no matter what they are. The days of burning at the stake are over (thank the goddess). We all need to stand up for our beliefs. As for the school and the little girl’s mother, their lack of knowledge about the craft is what brought all of this about. Unfortunately, ignorance is not always bliss. The problem is that witchcraft got such a bad reputation through the ages as well as the media, i.e.: Hollywood, Movies etc. Don't worry.. We will prevail. You did the right thing, standing by her side and sticking up for her.
Unfortunately, I have no advice - people are so 'stuck' the way they are, everything I've ever tried has had no effect.
But I feel your pain! Or rather, your daughter's pain!
My mother was also one to let me choose my own way, and I have grown up practicing 'witchcraft' and natural forms of magic since I was very small, with support and some guidance from my mother.
In middle school, a friend (who was also a neighbor) came over to my house, saw some 'weird' (as she said) stuff and asked me about it. I explained, adn she seemed interested. She asked me lots of questions in notes (you know how kids pass notes in school) and her mom went through her backpack one day and found the notes.
Her mother was fanatically Christian, and went to every house in our neighborhood telling them about the Satanist child next door, and how evil I was, luring their children to the dark side. She threw such a fit my mother was forced to try to do something to appease her, and guess what that something was?
She insisted I see her priest, who then tried to EXORCISE me! it was ridiculous!
UGH! So yeah, I send my sympathies to you guys.
lol Since I used to volunteer at the school many of the kids know me. The principal and I are on a first name basis. I doubt that anyone would mess with my daughters over our beliefs. My 6 year old proudly wears her pentacle. They've been singing We all come from the goddess since they could talk, I have a recording of them singing at 2 and three years of age. They say goddess bless you when someone sneezes. When saying the pledge in the am they also say in goddess we trust, instead of god. LOL pisses my christian sister off, her son is in the same class.
You've done us all proud by standing up for your daughter. My little ones (5 and 6 years old) would commend you. One of their favorite songs is called the Symbol, have you heard it? It's on YouTube, if your interested. My girls know it by heart.
If the school persists, you have a very strong back up system here on Paganspace who would be willing to help. Hell, I think even the Satanists here would be behind you, since it could be one of their kids next. (am I right?)