With public school soon to start (and in some areas they have already started), parents do their best to prepare their children for the coming year. Besides the academic learning, students also learn social skills and life habits. Sometimes these habits are picked up from their peers. One of those habits is bullying.
Our children and the youth of our communities want our affection; they want our love. They want to be recognized and they want to be taught. They look to their parents and teachers as leaders and role models. Our children will learn to live by the way we teach them.
When parents aren’t paying attention to what their children are doing, they will look for leadership elsewhere. There are opportunities at school to join gangs and start bullying other students. Bullying is a form of oppression and identity theft and is very destructive. It is done to cause others to feel less than they really are through threats or insults and even through violence.
Bullies taunt, tease, and mercilessly persecute those they wish to oppress. The effects of bullying can be felt by anyone who has ever suffered through it. Bullying causes emotional distress with fear, anxiety, depression and a disconnection from family, friends and low self-worth.
So how do we teach our own children not to bully others or deal with bullying themselves? Positive communication and increased interaction from parents and teachers is the key. A listening ear speaks greatly to how much you are valued as an individual. Those who tend to want to bully other children need to learn the sacredness of life. Participating in service for those less fortunate or disabled helps children to appreciate what they have and understand that many people have differences and we should show respect for all.
But we need to do more than just communicate with our family members, we need to interact with them with purpose. Take your children on special outings like dinner, park time or a live show. Improve the ever important involvement of the family.
Rally around each other in support and strength. When all else fails, the family must remain strong. If a single member of the family is struggling with something, get the whole family involved.
Struggles might also include cyberbullying, creating no safe place anywhere. The attacks follow the victim wherever they go. Cyberbullying carries over to all areas of life as it impacts self-worth and has the potential to lead to suicide.
Parents can do much to understand their youth if they listen without judging. Staying involved with our children help them to feel safe and secure. Those children who tend to bully others can learn valuable lessons for life as they grow to adulthood and learn to treat others kindly.