Dear Mrs. Welsch,
This letter has nothing to do with our legal trouble. As of this morning I’ve informed the school that I won’t press charges and want them to do the same. You need to know that as upset as some people are about this, I’m still only interested in what’s best for Darius.
Darius is an unusual student. I’ve encountered very few boys like him, yet every one of them was exactly like Darius. Your son is so open about himself that he is inaccessible. When I attempt to correct his conjugation in French, he interrupts me and yells the completion of the correction, chastises himself, and apologizes to me. It is always in that order.
Multiple times during the week before the incident, I observed him approached by other boys for conversation, but once invited for an opinion, he announces his beliefs and sets about examining them aloud, not allowing the other boys to converse with him; if they get a word in edgewise, he course-corrects his monologue and continues on, refusing to let anyone else in. I understand why your husband was offended at my earlier recommendation that he see a councilor, though I assume he is receiving help at the present time.
Whatever the root of his issue, he is suffering from a radical self-definition that refuses social connection. Every day he builds walls of his inner thoughts around himself. He is too open to be accessible, and it is preventing him from learning in the classroom and connecting with his fellow children.
Monday I gave him a moleskin in which to write some of his thoughts; as of Thursday, he had filled less than half a page. His radical self-definition only occurs when people try to talk to him. That kind of silence when alone could be part of what’s wrong. And to the end of finding out what’s wrong, I thought you would find my account of Thursday afternoon useful.
When I arrived at the cafeteria, Darius was already insisting on buttering all the other boys’ toast, and was enthusiastically explaining how it is to be done. One boy, whom I will not name, didn’t enjoy this lecture and tried to pull his plate away early. I do not believe Darius swiped the knife at him intentionally, but was rather pulling himself away to disengage. He cut his own cheek and I could see there was a fair amount of blood. When I approached to examine the wound and take him to the Nurse’s, he began rambling about a history of anemia in your family. His tone was a warning, even though his words were merely explanatory. I disregarded and tried to apply a napkin to his cheek, which is when he stabbed my shoulder. The other boys tackled him shortly after that and the police were phoned.
I checked on him twice before the officers arrived. I’ve never seen him talking that fast; the second time, I couldn’t even make out the words. I believe he was explaining himself to the plastic model skeleton in the Nurse’s station.
I don’t know what is wrong with Darius. From what I’ve heard, he won’t be allowed back in public school for some time. It is my hope that you’ll find him what he needs. If he’s ever ready to come back, I’ll do what I can to help him.