Today I have the privelege to bring you Megan Bostic and her aspect on bullying. I found her post to be quite well put and gives us a new outlook on something we might not consider at times. I also have a swag pack to give away to one lucky winner.
Portrait of a bully
I may be playing devil’s advocate a little here. Don’t get me wrong, I was bullied just like anyone else. There was a special kind of bully named Mark when I was in elementary school. He was physically abusive to some, but he was sexually abusive, in the verbal sense to me. This took place from Kindergarten up until third grade, when he finally left my school. Thinking back, I’ve wondered, what made a kid behave that way? How was a child exposed to that kind of sexual knowledge at such an early age?
This curiosity about bullies made me decide what I was going to write even before I saw this recent news story posted on Anderson Live. The story is about, not only a boy, but his father, bullying their ten year old neighbor living with cerebral palsy. One of Anderson Cooper’s viewers commented, “God bless that little girl AND the boy being raised by the hateful father.”
Why or how does someone become a bully? There is no one factor. There are peer risks, societal risks, school problems, but definitely there are also risks within one’s family that contribute to the possibility of a child becoming a bully. These behaviors usually start way before their teenage years; usually at age five or six.
· Some of these children have been victimized by older brothers and sisters and feel helpless, so they in turn victimize others to work out their aggression.
· Having a lack of boundaries at home and no discipline will give a child the impression that they can do anything they please with no repercussions.
· Neglect, lack of love, being physically abused at home can cause anger problems which also contribute to this nationwide problem.
· Or, as in the case above, a parent who bullies, becomes a role model for his or her child.
These are by no means excuses, but maybe just a reminder that bullies aren’t necessarily bad kids, sometimes they’re good kids living in problematic or tragic situations.
We can’t help what happens in other family’s homes, but we can teach our own kids about bullying, not only how to stay away from one, but how to keep them becoming one as well. Sometimes it takes more than words. Sometimes it takes discipline, kindness, and love. Maybe most important, it takes being a role model and showing our children that people should be treated with respect, no matter their size, color, culture, or abilities.
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