We all recall this saying above from when we were younger and growing up. I think I recall hearing it most when I was in elementary. Too bad, it isn’t true. Words hurt just as much as actions do and these days bullying is on a rise. I know it occurred in my adolescent days in the 80’s and 90’s, but now a days it has become so much more prominent. We are seeing kids shoot up schools, commit suicide, and become introvert over it. They are making Lifetime movies behind the story lines and true stories based on the way students are responding to the bullying and the battle of trying to overcome it.
The Merriam-Webster dictionary defines a bully as a blustering browbeating person; especially: one habitually cruel to others who are weaker. I just want to make sure in case someone reads this and isn’t sure what we are discussing they know the context in which I will be discussing this. So in an effort to break it down a little more the website www.stopbullying.gov/kids/facts/index.html sharing that it ranges from teasing, spreading rumors, leaving kids out on purpose, and attacking someone by hitting them or yelling at them. It goes on to discuss the rise in cyber bullying and how this occurs. We have seen a rise in this as well over the last few years with the increase of social media and children and teenagers being able to create pages on sites.
I find this to be a major issues in today’s society and not just with children. I see it happen amongst all age groups. I think we hear about it most in children because of the actions of some of these kids and their actions. I find myself most amazed by the stories and the effort it takes them to make someone else feel bad. I want to say that I first wonder what their parents are like and if they have anything to do with the behavior. I am not saying blame parents, I am saying I am curious as some of these kids are picking up the behavior they are seeing adults do and get things they want. On the other hand you will have the kids out there that are taking out the lack of dealing with other issues not resolved by bullying or belittling someone else. It has never been any secret that kids can be cruel at times and I am not sure that is really it or they can be more candid than anything. However, after a certain age, they understand fully what is not nice to say to another person or party. When you look at stats like approximately 160,000 teens skip school every day because of bullying and over 3.2 million students are victims of bullying each year per www.dosomething.org you can’t help but know it is a growing issue in America.
Many will act like this is not an issues in schools and in workplaces, but it isn’t just the future of America that is in jeopardy by these children talking to one another as Donald Trump often finds it ok to speak about his opponents. I share this as he has been known at times to avoid answering the question and address someone’s appearance or lack thereof based on his judgement or opinion. I have to ask myself, who is he to judge and make any comments on anyone else’s features. I bring him up as his numbers in the polls indicate there are actually people considering him for President and if we are looking at someone who can’t have a fluid conversation without slandering someone’s looks… I wonder if bullying would rise with a leader like this in office, after all he is and would continue to be a figure in the public eye. Kids don’t always know when seeing adults act like this and parents not taking time to remind them this kind of behavior is not ok, that we can’t behave this way. I wonder if the Trump has considered what he would do if it was someone else talking to his children the way speaks to fellow counterparts or makes comments about women. I am not picking on him, I say this as so many of us watch television with our kids in the room and may even tune into the debates or news channels and see these recounts of his or anyone’s actions. We may comment and condone it before thinking about the impressionable person listening and watching how we respond to those comments.
So, if we were all to stop and Look at the Man in the Mirror as Michael Jackson so nicely graced us with his tunes, where this world would be. Bullying hasn’t risen because this type of behavior is acceptable. Cyber bullying hasn’t been able to increase due to the lack of attention being given to it. Cyber bullying just brings me to another point. Do children really need to be on social media?? Many adults don’t know the do’s and don’ts of social media; so do children? We have opened this platform up for our children and it has become a mainstream avenue to easily be derogatory with other children, heck some adults use it for the same thing. I want you to think of this one step further as someone will read this and say, kids will be kids. I believe there is some truth in that statement, however, keep in mind that without them understanding to handle themselves on social media opens them up to more things then what they deal with right now. Jobs, colleges, etc are not researching peoples social media sites at times reviewing people’s behavior. We all know that what is put online can always be found. Do we need our adolescents posting things that may not indicate who they are or will be in the future that can damage their future? Some colleges are looking at recruiting and following students with talent from middle school all the way up. I am just wanting us to get out of this mind frame that, because they are young it won’t impact their future. We need to be addressing these issues head on. Do you think that kids come up with ideas about not liking their hair, shape of their nose, roundness of their chin on their own? Some in time will, many will gain insecurities over what they have been harassed on overtime. I want our parents to be vigilant and willing to combat it head on with your child or children in your village per say. If you are a parent, aunt, uncle, grandparent and you are a bully, you need to recognize the fact that you are helping aid in molding this little one’s future and consider changing the way you handle things. I know, I know… I will have some people asking. Who does she think she is with this? What I do know is I have seen adults do the same thing, outcast someone they don’t even know due to something they aren’t sure they can relate to or with. Folks, we all have to exist on this earth as one. We all have differences and things that are unique about us, those differences shouldn’t pull us apart, but make us stronger. In the Corporate world, there is a reason they discuss focusing on each person’s strengths to grow and working to build on weaknesses to turn them into a strength.
I ask you to think of how different our world would be if students and adults weren’t considering taking their lives and hurting one another because their egos are bruised and they weren’t accepted. I ask you to take a look on how you start making a difference with who you are and how you conduct yourself. We all have Monsters under our bed as Rhianna and Eminem sing about in their song, but can we take someone else by the hand and help them through it. Can we offer a prayer up for the one we don’t understand as you don’t know what their battle is? Can we pay attention to our children and the ones you have an impact and not sugar coat the real issues. Have those hard discussions to make see where there head is and what is going on school and at social events? Can we consider saying no to social media as they don’t know how to properly use a cell phone at times, let alone social media with predators, and other things on it that many times is outside of their scope anyway?
I urge you to report bullying and open your eyes to make sure it isn’t your child that is bringing destruction on someone else as well as yourself. I know self-evaluation and self-awareness is not the easiest thing to do at times. I just wonder what our world would be like if we really all attempted to start with ourselves and or households to make a difference in such a large and horrible cause. If every child was excited about going to school and seeing the sun shine because the environment is or was different. If adults didn’t want to stay in their office or cubicle or classroom at break time due to not being accepted or rejected.
I feel strongly about the cause and therefore I will release a video soon on Facebook and YouTube. Please stay tuned and thanks for stopping by.