When attending school, we all wanted to stand out in the crowd. We wanted to have the coolest clothes, the most stylish haircut, and the best backpack. While having these things never really helped us earn “status” on the schoolyard, they definitely gave us the confidence boost we craved and maybe helped us earn a few compliments here and there.
Having children of our own, however, we tend to see things a little differently. While we want our children to feel comfortable in their skin and be liked by their peers, we’re well-aware that money doesn’t grow on trees. Yet, we still try our best to get them the clothing, shoes, and school supplies that they ask for. Being cool in school, after all, is a big deal for a student!
Single mom Haley Hassell of Cantonment, Florida, certainly wanted her 6-year-old daughter, Presleigh, to have the luxury of nice school supplies after she bought her the pencil case she asked for. In fact, the dedicated mom went to three different stores just to find it.
Hassell, who figured her daughter would be excited to have her dream pencil case for the 2019 school year, was shocked when she suddenly changed her mind.
“When I surprised her with it this afternoon (just knowing she would be ecstatic) she stared at it and threw it in the trash and slammed the bedroom door. She yelled ‘That’s stupid, everyone in my class has that…I don’t want it anymore!'” the shocked mom says in a Facebook post.
Although Hassell felt hurt and confused at her daughter’s reaction, she knew she had to teach her a valuable lesson. After all, being raised by a single parent, Presleigh needed to understand that having cool school supplies, let alone a pencil box, is something that shouldn’t be taken for granted.
“Probably smoke coming out of my ears and I’m trying really hard not to completely lose it on this kid that I have worked so hard to completely take care of financially on my own and make sure she always gets what she needs and then some. BUT I thought I had always taught her to be grateful & know how lucky she was but apparently sis needed a small wake up call!!”
So, the mother then tells Presleigh, “Okay, that’s fine. Let me go get the one you’re going to use” as she hands her a Ziplock bag, which reads, “Presleigh’s Pencil Bag” in black marker.
Not only did Hassell downgrade her daughter’s beloved pencil bag, but she told Presleigh that’d her brand new pencil bag would be going to another less fortunate child.
“I told her to get it out of the trash and we would be finding a child to give it to tomorrow, one whose mommy and daddy don’t have money for any school supplies or someone who may not even have a mommy or daddy. I explained to her she’s not entitled to anything special and she is taking for granted how lucky she is. So, for now, she will be using a Ziploc bag and will personally be delivering the nice box to a child that could benefit from it.”
While some commenters on Hassell’s post find the punishment too harsh, her goal was to teach her daughter how to be thankful for what she has.
“I truly believe changing your perception and just being grateful can turn around any situation in life,” the mother finishes in her viral Facebook post, which was shared over 60,000 times.
Find out more about this story of gratitude below. Do you think the lesson Hassell taught Presleigh was too cruel?