Charles has been loving his job because they had complete family friendly hours, or so he thought. It was more like a way to reel him in. I don't want to complain because I'm so grateful he has a job. I just want to complain at least for now. I'm shocked by what his boss did. My boys go to a yearly camping trip with other boys every year in August. Wanting to keep it anonymous I'll say it was a father/son camping trip with a nearby homeschool group. No names. It's something they really, really look forward to. In fact, my boys have been counting down ever since they got back from the last trip a year ago. Well, Charles has been working a lot and actually worked THREE DAYS straight, almost day and night with no sleep, so he can go on this trip with his boys. I even would go to his job and help keep him awake. The night before the boys' camping trip I hadn't slept for 2 days. In the middle of the night I left his job to finish buying stuff for their camping trip. I had to go twice in the to get everything. Finally, by 6:30am Charles was ready to go home. He was happy he was finally getting a 4 day weekend that he had approved awhile back. We get home and he falls asleep for one hour. ONE HOUR later after our arrival his job texts him frantically. Charles calls them back and they tell him to come back into work or he's fired. He was at a loss because this was an approved vacation and he hasn't had any rest. How would he tell his boys? I got the idea to call some leaders and ask if it was still possible to send the boys since it was highly supervised camping trip. They said it would be no problem whatsoever. I was so relieved and I drove them over along with a friend that had come along.
I arrived at the location and checked again with the leaders to see if it'd be okay. They kept saying it'd be no problem whatsoever and to sign a waiver. Well, I get a call a few hours later that they were being returned home because of an incident. I was shocked and very ashamed. It was a 3 hour drive back from the camping site. They must've been really, really bad for them to drive so far to return my boys. I waited past midnight for my boys to come home. They came in the house very quiet and sad and went straight to bed along with the friend we brought. Charles and I talked with the drivers, which are also the leaders of the trip, and they told me the kids had been really good. That wasn't the problem at all. Another kid threw a co2 in the fire and caused an explosion. They freaked out and decided to send the kids home who's parent weren't there because they felt things were out of control. Well, ours were the only ones that didn't have a parent there. They had NOTHING to do with explosion whatsoever nor were the near the incident when it happened but were made to pack up and leave in front of everyone sitting around the fire. They said it was very embarrassing. People were watching my kids pack up and no doubt many thought my kids must've been horribly bad to have to leave. They had to leave half their stuff there I had just bought because they were rushed into the van.
The other part of the story. An older kid convinced a 9 year old to throw a co2 into the fire. He said, "throw it in. It'll really light it up!" The 9 year old didn't want to but the older kid started calling him a wimp and a baby. After awhile of this, the 9 year old threw it in the fire having no clue what would happen. An older guy saw it and yelled (thankfully) for everyone to back up. An explosion happened. Oh my word, it was bad. The guys in charge were very upset. The 9 year old told them that a big kid told him to throw it in and he didn't know it'd explode. Turns out, it was a son of the leader there. He denied it to save his hide even though other kids said they heard him pressuring the young boy. He got to stay because he lied and mine, along with the 9 year old, went home.
Normally, I would take this singular incident and just let it go. However, other bullies were causing problems, like one of them shooting my young son with a BB gun on purpose. Another known bully tried to steal my son's gun since he was forced to leave it behind. He said, "well, he shouldn't have left it. That's his problem." He didn't abandon his stuff. Thankfully, my kids' friend stood up to him and threatened to get my husband involved when they got back. One boy picked up my 9 year old son and the air by his shirt and yelled, "Do you know who your talking to?!" My son only asked him to stop being mean just before he did that. Mind you, these are mostly Christian kids in this homeschool group. When parents of these kids were being told of these incidents, they were being brushed off. So my good kids went home and the bullies stayed 3 days and had a blast.
That's the end of the road for me. I was bullied as a child and I absolutely will never willingly put my kids in a situation where this can happen. It's been an ongoing problem and other kids have made complaints. Unfortunately, when the bullies parents are the ones in charge of most of the events, they get away with it. I love my kids and will not put them in a situation like this any more. It should be a place of refuge with kids that have things in common. My kids are very hurt and have asked to not have to go to any more of these events. I'm very sad for them and I know exactly how they feel. I was very bullied from 4th-9th grade in school. I'm not a bad person for trying to shield my kids. I've given it several years so I'm not trying to be a flake. It's just enough. Many other kids have complained and haven't been heard. I don't want to be one of those parents that don't listen.