K got brought home by the neighbor's older sister because he was throwing pieces of their game into the street and then kicked the game down (the golf ball ladder toss game). When I got him calmed down and listened to his side he told me why - it was because there were a lot of kids wanting a turn and they made him last in line. I said, somebody had to go last. He told me it made him feel left out so he "decided to be a jerk to them" (his words not mine). I asked him if it worked, if they gave him a turn before other kids, and he said no. I showed him that everybody had a bad time because of that decision. I suggested that if he feels left out, he should talk to M because she is a good friend and would understand. Well he can't do that. Every time I suggested he tell her how he felt he got agitated and talked about what he would do next time M wanted to play with him (make her go last, obvs).
So I kinda dropped that line of conversation and focused on what he did and why it was not OK. Eventually we agreed he needed to write M a letter and give it to her. He wrote "M, I am really sorry for kicking your game" and wanted to run right out the door. I asked what about the other stuff he needed to apologize for, and didn't he want to explain why he got upset? He wrote a new note, "M, I am sorry for kicking your game and throwing your balls." "Don't you want to tell her that you felt left out?" "No."
Why can't boys tell their friends how they feel? Is it a boy thing? DH is very expressive and talks about feelings just fine, it's not that they have a 'bad' example. And he talks to me easily. But he'd rather get dragged home in a blaze of glory than say, "you hurt my feelings."