This morning we gathered as our Boys’ Junior School to talk about the ‘Gaff-Brayshaw’ incident in the Eagles-Dockers game on Sunday.
We spoke about how the hit has impacted upon so many people in many ways: Andrew Brayshaw’s injuries, the distress at the time and the potential emotional fragility he may now suffer, especially when playing sport, and the support he and his family will need; Andrew Gaff’s action that also caused him remorse, potential emotional anxiety and stress, how he may now struggle to shake off labels of a being a dirty player, or worse, and that he will also need people to support yet not condone his actions. We know that men tend to ‘clam up’ when they have made bad decisions or face adversity, and providing support at times of distress and self-blame is critical.
We spoke about Pat Cronin and the ‘Cowards Punch’ campaign, about self-control when frustrated or angry and how violence, hitting, kicking, punching, slapping is never ok…..and that at the young age of our boys, they can develop the skills that allow them to deal with situations respectfully.
As always, our boys were insightful and listened with care and interest.