I’m Sure It Wasn’t THAT Word

The first counselor in the Primary presidency is leading a group of children through the church hallway to a classroom. She has a large smile on her face. “Grant spent sharing time telling everyone that you called him the F word.”

The man is standing next to his office after interviewing a youth.

“I’m sure it wasn’t THAT word,” she says.

There’s a reason he has never once preached a sermon about clean language.

Grant is coming through the hallway. He signals to him.

“Come here, pal.”

They step into the office and sit.

“What’s wrong, Dad?

“So you told the whole primary that I called you the F word.”

“Yeah? Well, you did.”

“Yes, that’s true. I more said it than called you that, but yeah, I did that. Which was wrong and I apologized to you after.”

“Yeah, true.”

“Did you happen to mention what you did to kick that off?”

“No.”

“You didn’t tell them that you beat up your friend because you were jealous over Legos?”

“No.”

“Would you like me to tell the primary that?”

“I guess not.”

“Yesterday wasn’t a great moment for either of us. You lost your temper. I lost my temper. I’m more responsible for my actions than you are for yours. I apologized to you and to the family. You wrote an apology to Andrew, Noah, Jose, and Jennifer.”

“Well, Andrew deserved it. He said my Lego man was stupid.”

The man sighs. “Was it right to hit him?”

“It wasn’t right to say mine was stupid.”

“Was it right to him?”

“Well, no, but …”

“No ‘but.’ You felt embarrassed and upset. But hitting him was wrong. Then Heather called to say you had beaten up Andrew, and then I was embarrassed and upset. And yelling and swearing at you was wrong.”

“Yeah.”

“And we both apologized to everyone as hurt.”

“Yeah.”

“Can we call it over now?”

“Andrew shouldn’t call my stuff stupid again or I’m gonna stuff his face in a trashcan.”

“No, you’re not. You’re going to walk away and find an adult to help you.”

“Ok. But if he does that again—”

“No, you will not. And I will try mightily not to freak out either. Deal?”

“Ok.”

“Can we call it over now?”

“Yes.”

They both stand. The man hugs Grant and opens the door.

“I love you, pal.”

“Love you too, Dad. But if Andrew is mean again—”

“Go to class. And just stop.”

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