When It Comes to Protecting Kids from Bullying, Mama is One Mean Heifer

Did you ever have the experience of being bullied, of feeling “owned” by a jerk who somehow sensed and gleefully exposed your deepest vulnerabilities? Were you a bully?  The School Bully may be an icon of adolescence, but back then his territory was limited to the schoolyard, whereas now his/her power is increased exponentially, following kids every minute of every day. The bully can even find willing  accomplices who reveal their darkest selves with a cowardly click of the mouse.

No kid should have to live a nightmare of dread and fear, and certainly not be driven by desperation to take his or her own life. Whatever someone else may think – that he or she is (forgive the terms) gay/fat/scrawny/weird/downright ugly – nobody should be treated without the respect and honor befitting every person. Basic decency among civilized human beings demands nothing less.  It’s up to us to teach our children how to treat others and how to properly use technology.

As adults, we know that we all had to find our place in the world. We also know that fortunes can swing wildly over the course of a lifetime, and most of us have to admit to being surprised by a former schoolmate who either surpassed our expectations or flamed out once they reached adulthood.

You may one day regard an old bully as an example of a twisted mind and bad behavior. But as an adult, you’ve developed that perspective over time. You’ve had your reunions and even seen some outcomes. As a kid, now is all you know.

Stand with the educators who take bullying behavior seriously. Examine your own thoughts and what you say casually or at the dinner table. Might your kids be hearing a tone of condescension or scorn that they take as implicit approval for mistreating someone else? Do you find pleasure in having a “popular” kid who rules the roost?  We must also face the consequences and teach our kids the Golden Rule.

We parents, and perhaps moms in particular, need to demonstrate that we’re not taking any bull when it comes to protecting kids. Lets raise the generation that puts bullying in its place- the history books.