Bullying Awareness and Prevention for Our Children
Bullying Awareness – We Need to Keep Talking About It
It seems like everytime I turn on the TV or pull up my social media, I see a story about someone being bullied. Bullying in society today is at an all time high. And my bullying awareness meter is off the charts! So many stories I’ve read and the bully barely gets a slap on the wrist. As a society when are we going to say enough is enough? The problem is not going away so we have to keep the bullying awareness meter high in order to combat the lightning fast news cycles.
What Does It Mean to be Bullied
Bullying is any unwanted or aggressive behavior towards another person. Usually among school aged children. This behavior tends to be repeated or has the potential to be repeated. Bullying can have lasting effects on not only the person being bullied, but also the person who is bullying others. The bully for some reason may think that they have a power over others. Or they may actually be in a position of power and abuse that to bully others. It is only through bullying awareness that we can help combat this major social issue.
Anyone Can Be The Victim of Bullying
When I think of bullying, stories of kids usually come to mind first. But that is not necessarily always the case. There have been countless stories of young adults and adults being bullied as if they were kids. It’s a sad, sad day when you read about someone being bullied because of the color of their skin, of a disability, or their sexual preference. Not one of these things that was mentioned has an impact on someone else’s life that they should be mistreated because of it. Every single one of us is different in our own way, that’s what makes us unique. It would be a pretty boring world if we were all the same right?
Bullying Isn’t Always Physical
Anytime there is touching such as, hitting, kicking, pushing, punching or damaging property, this is considered physical bullying. People should be aware that there is also such a thing as verbal bullying or social bullying. An example of being verbally bullied is when someone uses words in a negative way. Always putting you down or teasing you to gain power over you. Verbal bullying can take place at home, school or one’s place of employment. Social bullying on the other hand sometimes involves more than one person. Say there was a group of kids that never let you play with them or started telling others not to be your friend. These are both examples of social bullying. Another all too common example is someone saying something about someone that isn’t true. Which is considered a rumor. This has the potential to ruin someone’s character.
Cyberbullying is Now Something We Have to Worry About
Times have definitely changed with all the technology that is starting to consume our lives on a daily basis. Along with that comes the possibility of being cyberbullied. I feel like this has played a huge role with bullying in society today. People don’t even have to be all up in your face to be a bully anymore. They can do it over any of the several social media outlets, through email, or even over a phone call. This is where a huge percentage of the danger lies for our children. We need to make sure that we do our best to monitor their interactions and to limit negative interactions. I’m not saying be a “hover parent” but, if you do not watch out for your child, who is going to? Cyber bullying needs to be a major topic of bullying awareness.
Talking to Our Children about Bullying Awareness
I am a firm believer that parents play a huge role with the problem of bullying. It is our jobs as parents to teach our children what is right and wrong. That includes how we are to treat other people. If we are not teaching them to be accepting and tolerant of those that are different then we are failing. Because like I said earlier, we are all different and it will always be that way. We need to teach our children to stick up for those kids that may be getting bullied at school. Most importantly, in my opinion we need to teach them to talk to an adult or someone that can help, if they or someone they know are being bullying.
A Few Talking Points about Bullying Prevention Discussions
There is a few things my husband and I try to reinforce with our children. Number one, do the right thing even when nobody’s watching. And two, do the right thing even when everybody is watching. We have to instill the courage in our children to stand up for what is right when they are alone and when they are outnumbered and the peer pressure is on. At the very least they can walk away if their “so-called” friends want to mistreat others or are up to no good.
Bullies can change someone’s life forever. And in some instances, bullying in society today has lead to many people taking their own lives because of how bad they were being bullied. That is something their families will have to live with forever. A burden noone should ever have to carry. Bullies on the other hand will also have to live with knowing they took a life because of their poor actions. Their family will also feel the effects of such a bad decision. I recently read a very sad article about a sweet 10 year old girl that hung herself from being bullied. Such a tragic thing for her, her family and the community.
Bullying awareness needs to be taken serious. Don’t shrug it off as a one time thing. Please educate your children about the different types of bullying and how they can help stop it. Life is too precious to be spent fearing someone or feeling like you are worthless. Let’s be kind to everyone and treat each other as we would want to be treated. Simple as that.