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Crumpets and Bollocks: Bullying: Advice Please

Bullying: Advice Please


I've been thinking a lot about the subject of bullying, overanalyzing it. My nephew is being homeschooled now as a result of years of bullying, among some other variables. It makes you hate kids and want to bully them into not being such assholes to each other. It makes you want to be an asshole. I've overanalyzed this subject to a point where I'm not sure what to think anymore, and I've definitely strayed outside the box again.



I do know I don't like knowing KIDS experience the pain of being bullied. But do I?

I know it sucks to be bullied.
I don't know anyone who hasn't been bullied.

Studies say lots of things about bullying, you know, the "empirical evidence that suggests," that people often misuse, misquote, and misunderstand... What I gather from the studies I've seen:

Moms who drink and swear once shared an article about bullying, and one thing that stood out to me in the article, and it's spot on, bullies today are NOTHING like bullies of the past. There is no kicking their ass and moving on. It was more black and white when I was a kid, and even more black and white when my mom was a kid.

But today, it's different. There's cyberbullying. It's a lot like girl bullying, which is much more passive aggressive, emotional, and powerful than the physical I'll beat you up for your lunch money type of bullying.

But bullying is so ingrained in society, I think we do it without knowing it all the time. I don't think we can exist without it.

In a sense, for example, parenting is a form of bullying. I'll give you a spanking if you don't listen to me... That sounds a lot like, "If you don't give me your lunch money, I'm going to punch you in the face." I'll put you in time out if you do that again sounds a lot like, "I won't talk to you anymore because you wore pink on Thursday when I wanted to wear pink." But we go way worse with parenting. Have you ever grabbed your kid and forced your child into doing what you wanted him to do, like leave? I have picked my kids up kicking and screaming to leave a building to deal with their behavior. I do it just like a bully. It's not only ok for me to do this, it is very much expected by society. It's not considered bullying because why? I have my kid's better interest in mind? Or because I have to control my kids? Because it's not to boost my ego by appearing like I control my kids to those watching?

But they are two different things. A spanking is not a punch to the face. Right? I mean you HAVE to punch someone in the face to be a bully.
Definition of Bully: To use superior strength or influence to intimidate (someone), typically to force him or her to do what one wants.
I think we are all bullies. I think we all have it in us to be an asshole, to belittle someone, to use our force to get what we want, and to accidentally step on someone while we are walking. Bullies are everywhere and will be everywhere for the rest of your life. Humans are not infallible. We all fuck up. We are all slightly narcissistic. We are all slightly inconsiderate and sadistic. The good vs. evil epic tale you are looking for is not between a bully and a victim. It is within both the bully and the victim. It is within all of us.

But how do you talk to a kid about bullying? How do you teach your kids not to bully when you know they must at some point in our society? How do you teach your kids not to be the victim when you know they must at some point in our society? I guess what our kids need is wisdom. The wisdom to know when to stand up and when to sit down, and the ability to do both.

I think it's important we all understand, not just our kids but us grown ups too...
The basic right from wrong will go the longest way of all things. You will still bully and be bullied at some point, but the basic conscience is what keeps it in check so it doesn't go overboard. It also keeps the skin thick enough to take a blow here and there. I assure you, when you are in a place where you are surrounded by people poking you, mocking you, manipulating you... The best line of defense is the conscience because it tells you they are wrong. It reminds you who is behaving badly. If you really listen to that inner voice telling you the others are full of shit, you won't play their games. The best way to not lose is to not play. 

I find it unproductive that we tend to tackle this subject through some kind of awareness. It cures bullying much like cancer awareness cures cancer. It doesn't. So I sit back and think, how do I help someone like my nephew? There is no hotline for it. There is no law that will protect him. There is no teacher who will protect him. I can't sit with him all day to stand up for him. Being the example is a big deal, but it doesn't help him NOW. It helps him later. 

I'm still lost as to helping him get help now. His shit level has definitely been reached. He can't talk about it anymore let alone face it again. Will he ever be ready to go back to school? Will he ever be ready to work with his own peers again? I do think he needs a break from them to rebuild himself, but how do I help him rebuild his strength? How do I know when this is just an excuse to stay home from school? How do I get him to see when he is being the bully or perceived as such? 

I'm going to have to end this post with questions I can't answer. Maybe your comments will help so if you have an opinion, fire away. 

Note: The nephew is on the autism spectrum. He mainly deals with girls being bullies, mostly mind games, the occasional being called the R-word, and the occasional physical bully. One girl used to kick him in the balls every day, and one day she went to smack him in the face and he blocked the smack, so she went and told everyone he hit her, that his block was him striking her, and of course, they believed her. He has switched grade schools 3 or 4 times, and middle schools 5 times before going home school. He just kept escaping one set of bullies right into the arms of another set. All of these kids will be in his high school in his district.

STATISTICAL STUFF












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Crumpets and Bollocks: Bullying: Advice Please

Friday, December 6, 2013

Bullying: Advice Please


I've been thinking a lot about the subject of bullying, overanalyzing it. My nephew is being homeschooled now as a result of years of bullying, among some other variables. It makes you hate kids and want to bully them into not being such assholes to each other. It makes you want to be an asshole. I've overanalyzed this subject to a point where I'm not sure what to think anymore, and I've definitely strayed outside the box again.



I do know I don't like knowing KIDS experience the pain of being bullied. But do I?

I know it sucks to be bullied.
I don't know anyone who hasn't been bullied.

Studies say lots of things about bullying, you know, the "empirical evidence that suggests," that people often misuse, misquote, and misunderstand... What I gather from the studies I've seen:

  • Bullying is changing. We now have both physical and emotional bullying, and a lot of it is happening online. 
  • There's been an increase in domestic violence that MIGHT influence the trends in bullying
  • Adults bully. Men more than women, generally same gender on gender. 
  • Teachers bully students, like it's not just students bullying students. This is true from grade school to college.
Moms who drink and swear once shared an article about bullying, and one thing that stood out to me in the article, and it's spot on, bullies today are NOTHING like bullies of the past. There is no kicking their ass and moving on. It was more black and white when I was a kid, and even more black and white when my mom was a kid.

But today, it's different. There's cyberbullying. It's a lot like girl bullying, which is much more passive aggressive, emotional, and powerful than the physical I'll beat you up for your lunch money type of bullying.

But bullying is so ingrained in society, I think we do it without knowing it all the time. I don't think we can exist without it.

In a sense, for example, parenting is a form of bullying. I'll give you a spanking if you don't listen to me... That sounds a lot like, "If you don't give me your lunch money, I'm going to punch you in the face." I'll put you in time out if you do that again sounds a lot like, "I won't talk to you anymore because you wore pink on Thursday when I wanted to wear pink." But we go way worse with parenting. Have you ever grabbed your kid and forced your child into doing what you wanted him to do, like leave? I have picked my kids up kicking and screaming to leave a building to deal with their behavior. I do it just like a bully. It's not only ok for me to do this, it is very much expected by society. It's not considered bullying because why? I have my kid's better interest in mind? Or because I have to control my kids? Because it's not to boost my ego by appearing like I control my kids to those watching?

But they are two different things. A spanking is not a punch to the face. Right? I mean you HAVE to punch someone in the face to be a bully.
Definition of Bully: To use superior strength or influence to intimidate (someone), typically to force him or her to do what one wants.
I think we are all bullies. I think we all have it in us to be an asshole, to belittle someone, to use our force to get what we want, and to accidentally step on someone while we are walking. Bullies are everywhere and will be everywhere for the rest of your life. Humans are not infallible. We all fuck up. We are all slightly narcissistic. We are all slightly inconsiderate and sadistic. The good vs. evil epic tale you are looking for is not between a bully and a victim. It is within both the bully and the victim. It is within all of us.

But how do you talk to a kid about bullying? How do you teach your kids not to bully when you know they must at some point in our society? How do you teach your kids not to be the victim when you know they must at some point in our society? I guess what our kids need is wisdom. The wisdom to know when to stand up and when to sit down, and the ability to do both.

I think it's important we all understand, not just our kids but us grown ups too...
  • Some people are assholes, but most of the time, good people have asshole moments.
  • When people criticize you like they mean it, they are merely projecting their own insecurities.
  • People who hate their life will take it out on others around them. That doesn't mean that everyone who insults you hates their life, but just know they exist, and they already hurt.
  • When you are being criticized, you hear your own insecurities and doubts, no matter what they say.
  • Instead of focusing on what people think of you, focus on what you think of yourself and self improvement. 
  • When you are the bully, have a good reason for it, and show restraint and mercy. 
  • Don't use people.
  • Don't lie to people. 
The basic right from wrong will go the longest way of all things. You will still bully and be bullied at some point, but the basic conscience is what keeps it in check so it doesn't go overboard. It also keeps the skin thick enough to take a blow here and there. I assure you, when you are in a place where you are surrounded by people poking you, mocking you, manipulating you... The best line of defense is the conscience because it tells you they are wrong. It reminds you who is behaving badly. If you really listen to that inner voice telling you the others are full of shit, you won't play their games. The best way to not lose is to not play. 

I find it unproductive that we tend to tackle this subject through some kind of awareness. It cures bullying much like cancer awareness cures cancer. It doesn't. So I sit back and think, how do I help someone like my nephew? There is no hotline for it. There is no law that will protect him. There is no teacher who will protect him. I can't sit with him all day to stand up for him. Being the example is a big deal, but it doesn't help him NOW. It helps him later. 

I'm still lost as to helping him get help now. His shit level has definitely been reached. He can't talk about it anymore let alone face it again. Will he ever be ready to go back to school? Will he ever be ready to work with his own peers again? I do think he needs a break from them to rebuild himself, but how do I help him rebuild his strength? How do I know when this is just an excuse to stay home from school? How do I get him to see when he is being the bully or perceived as such? 

I'm going to have to end this post with questions I can't answer. Maybe your comments will help so if you have an opinion, fire away. 

Note: The nephew is on the autism spectrum. He mainly deals with girls being bullies, mostly mind games, the occasional being called the R-word, and the occasional physical bully. One girl used to kick him in the balls every day, and one day she went to smack him in the face and he blocked the smack, so she went and told everyone he hit her, that his block was him striking her, and of course, they believed her. He has switched grade schools 3 or 4 times, and middle schools 5 times before going home school. He just kept escaping one set of bullies right into the arms of another set. All of these kids will be in his high school in his district.

STATISTICAL STUFF












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