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Justin Kissel
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« on: July 16, 2010, 11:19:24 AM »

How should Orthodox parents handle their kid(s) being bullied at school? Tell them to "stand up to the bully," possibly resulting in a fight? Tell them to ignore the bully? Tell a teacher? Run away? Something else?  Also, does the sex of the child make a difference (e.g. is it more permissable for boys to get into fights?)
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« Reply #1 on: July 16, 2010, 11:25:13 AM »

Tell the teacher.

If you tell your child to "stand up to the bully" and fight with the other kid, your child may just get hurt, and in any event your child will get into trouble for fighting.

The teacher may be very limited in what he or she can do for discipline, however.  So if the bullying continues, go to the principal and make a lot of noise about it. 
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« Reply #2 on: July 16, 2010, 11:35:21 AM »

When I was a kid I was told to fight back, but that was back in the 1980's and early 1990's. I fought one kid 13 times. I stopped fighting in the 8th grade. After getting beat up real bad by a 9th grade Penn Hills football player. He was able to bench 400 pounds and he turned my face into the beast off the movie "Beauty and the Beast". Non of my so called friends helped me out. Only his friends stopped the fight. I learned a valuable lesson that day, and I never fought again in my life. Some years after that people stopped fighting hand to hand. They started using guns and what not. But I moved to another school district and so I never saw any of that.


So the best thing to do is probably tell the teacher, and principle. .....especially if they are girls. Now days if kids fight in school.....at least in western Pennsylvania, they will get kicked out or whatever.......they are real strict now. Not like how it was back when I was little.

So yeah, tell the teacher and get involved somehow. You don't want your little ones to be suspended or unnecessarily scared up from a fight. And make sure they know who the kid is.......you know the one picking on your children. And make sure that that kid is taught a lesson, and not just a slap on the wrist.

I stopped doing alot of things when I was a kid because I was threatened(a teacher was gonna tell my parents something, but I told her not to) or was paddled or spanked...........etc. Kids need to know that some things are wrong, and for some kids some form of physical or emotional punishment is necessary.

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« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2010, 11:56:29 AM »

I would plan a course of several actions.  First, I would pray for the bullies and their parents.  I would also pray for the teachers and the principle.  Second, I would conference with the teacher and principle.  But I would also speak with your daughter's friends' parents; maybe they too are suffering from bullying.  In fact, maybe a group of concerned parents could approach the teachers and principle together.  I reckon that would send a pretty loud message if all y'all were united.  Lastly, I would enroll your daughters in a martial arts class.  I absolutely believe that if more girls and young women were to study a martial art, all level of violence against them would drop to new lows.  Don't think of martial arts as teaching people how to fight.  You will be teaching them DISCIPLINE, BALANCE AND HAND-EYE COORDINATION, SELF-CONFIDENCE, enhancing their SELF-ESTEEM, as well as how PROTECT THEMSELVES when Mom and Dad aren't around.

If you do decide to enroll them in a martial arts class, ask the instructor(s) to see their credentials.  Set in on a few classes to see how he/she interacts with other children.  Lastly, you'll want to make sure your children are comfortable as well as having a bit of fun with it.  When my parents first enrolled me in Judo in the sixth grade, I hated every minute of it.  Later, when I began studying Aikido and then onto Kempo Karate, I was hooked!  Smiley  
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« Reply #4 on: July 16, 2010, 01:47:14 PM »

I second Salpy:  Go to the teachers, principal, superintendent, and if you have a relationship with the bully's parents, talk with them as well.  Sometimes parents are ignorant of their children's actions.  It is *never* a good idea to encourage fighting because it only results in someone getting hurt, either your child or the bully or innocent bystanders.  If your child is confronted by a bully, teach them to walk away and get help.  If the bullying persists, I would most certainly be in the principal's office ASAP and if that still doesn't help, think about trying a new school.
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« Reply #5 on: July 16, 2010, 01:53:46 PM »

To fight.
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« Reply #6 on: July 16, 2010, 10:29:06 PM »

My youngest son was being bullied on the bus last year. He knows I teach him to "turn the other cheek," but I also tell him to speak out and stand up against anyone who is trying to intimidate or bully him or others. Anyway, he knew where the boy lived, so we drove over to his house one night and sat down with the boy and his mother to resolve the situation. Fortunately, the mother was very nice and very upset at her son's behavior. The boy and my son ended up becoming very good friends.

Of course, not all parents will be receptive to such an approach. But I personally believe in approaching and confronting the people responsible for the problem (the child and/or their parents) before calling in the "authorities." One reason I believe in this approach is that it demonstrates to the bully that you are not afraid to confront them. But then if they refuse to correct the problem, then by all means go to the teachers and pricipal.


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« Reply #7 on: July 16, 2010, 10:45:52 PM »

I was bullied throughout my youth and high school years and I vowed that if I ever had a child (especially a son) that such would never happen to him.  My parents often have felt bad because they didn't know how bad it was, because I didn't tell them. I wanted to take care of things myself, but too often my approach of trying to "rise above" and "take the high road" by doing nothing only encouraged them further.  Turn the other cheek, yes, but if such only nurtures a passive-aggressive attitude, then we are not actually turning the other cheek but, in fact, cursing our enemies instead of blessing them.

I would teach my child to stand up for himself.  However, I would be quick to point out that standing up for oneself can result in being harmed, just as doing nothing can be.  But my child, supposing  I ever have one, will not be a victim.  I won't let him. Hopefully, he will learn to choose his battles wisely.

Telling the teacher or the principal is often counterproductive.  As a teacher I can relate why.  Teachers identify more with the popular kids and the ones who do the bullying.  It's just human nature. The bullies are often the outgoing ones, the ones who stand out (regardless of whether they are intelligent or not) and are seen not as troublemakers but as models.  The teachers are more likely to just shrug off incidents and say to "man up" or "toughen up." 

I really don't have any solutions, but I know ignoring the problem will not help.
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« Reply #8 on: July 17, 2010, 11:21:47 AM »

Most bullies are cowards and the first time one of their "victims" beats the living Beelzebub out of them, they stop picking on him.  I had a classmate that bullied me all through sixth and seventh grade.  The bullying stopped after I knocked him unconscious, breaking his nose in the process. Sometimes community action is required.  When I was younger, we sometimes had to have three or four of us "'splain" things to a bully so he knew that nobody liked what he was doing.  Tattling to the Teacher only teaches your kids to be like so many people today, take no responsibility for your own life and let someone else handle it.  Unfortunately, society rewards this philosophy, and that is one of the reasons that I believe we have a "bullying" problem today.  I have no problem asking for help, AFTER I have tried and failed on my own.
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« Reply #9 on: July 17, 2010, 11:41:28 AM »

My youngest son was being bullied on the bus last year. He knows I teach him to "turn the other cheek," but I also tell him to speak out and stand up against anyone who is trying to intimidate or bully him or others. Anyway, he knew where the boy lived, so we drove over to his house one night and sat down with the boy and his mother to resolve the situation. Fortunately, the mother was very nice and very upset at her son's behavior. The boy and my son ended up becoming very good friends.

Of course, not all parents will be receptive to such an approach. But I personally believe in approaching and confronting the people responsible for the problem (the child and/or their parents) before calling in the "authorities." One reason I believe in this approach is that it demonstrates to the bully that you are not afraid to confront them. But then if they refuse to correct the problem, then by all means go to the teachers and pricipal.


Selam


I really like your solution, Gebre, and wish my parents had done the same when I was in public school and being mocked on a daily basis.
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« Reply #10 on: July 17, 2010, 01:00:14 PM »

Through the first half of my freshman year there was a sophomore who liked to make fun of me.  It made that math class unbearable.  Eventually diplomacy got me out of the situation. I was in a biology class with this guy's girlfriend and she informed me that he wished to do me physical harm.  A certain member of the Bloods who I from time to time "tutored" told her he found this turn of events highly unlikely.

Eventually some older friends of mine explained to the bully that bullying is hurtful and can damage another person's self-esteem.  They demonstrated this by inserting his head in a toilet.  He said he would tell on them and they showed that this course of action frequently doesn't work by using the toilet and repeating the exercise.  I didn't find out about this for a couple of years (until they all graduated) but did notice that my bully had transferred schools and I had a far more enjoyable rest of the year.
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« Reply #11 on: July 17, 2010, 07:13:25 PM »

LOL

It's good to have friends in high places.... Wink
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« Reply #12 on: July 18, 2010, 09:32:10 AM »

Hm.  Seems to me meeting violence with violence only multiplies wrongs.  Some of you have said your parents didn't even nkow about the bullying until much later and others say it doesn't do any good to tell an authority figure about the bullying.  It seems to me the two are connected.  If nothing else, alerting a teacher, principal, or superintendent (and parents, of course) at least puts your child in the position that he spoke to the proper chain of command.  Taking matters into your own hands only makes your child a bully also.

This may seem contrary to what I just wrote, but I do agree with GabrieltheCelt that it's a good idea to enroll kids in martial arts training.  Most martial arts instructors approach tae kwon do, karate, judo, what have you, as a discipline of the mind and body, not as a fighting course.  Tae kwon do especially focuses on respect and defense, not in attacking.  With this in mind, I'd recommend tae kwon do for kids dealing with bullying because it does give them an advantage in defending themselves without attacking someone. 
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« Reply #13 on: July 18, 2010, 03:58:17 PM »

Hm.  Seems to me meeting violence with violence only multiplies wrongs. 

I must read English different than you.  Seems that I read that meeting violence with violence actually brought peace in the above examples.

Quote

 Taking matters into your own hands only makes your child a bully also.


This is the nanny panny liberal BS that has made us a nation of victims.  It is pathetic that we have people that cannot tell the difference between a bully who preys on innocent people without provocation, and the innocent people who are not going to put up with it and put the bully (not other innocents) in his place.  What Sheeple.  Given that most teachers solution to bullying is to think happy thoughts, I would say that those who take matters into their own hands have a better chance of not being further bullied than those who's defense is to run and tattle. 

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« Reply #14 on: July 18, 2010, 04:46:21 PM »

Well, I can say that most schools these days have a zero tolerance policy on fighting, regardless of if the child is the initiator or the defender.  Therefore, it is in the child's best interest to walk away, tell an authority, and do not fight back.  Furthermore, if your kid is outmatched or outnumbered, staying in the fight is a good way to get him seriously injured.  And hey, if your kid happens to beat the daylights out of the bully, the bully's parents can sue for assault.  Seems to me it's better to take the high road and not act like an animal.

By the way, what does liberal have to do with anything?  I'd appreciate it if you kept politics out of this discussion.  Open a new topic in the Politics forum, and if you don't have access please PM Fr. Chris.  Thanks.
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« Reply #15 on: July 18, 2010, 06:56:03 PM »

Emotional bullying (especially among girls) makes it hard to stand up for yourself without looking like a jerk yourself....
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« Reply #16 on: July 19, 2010, 06:28:23 PM »

Well, I can say that most schools these days have a zero tolerance policy on fighting, regardless of if the child is the initiator or the defender. Therefore, it is in the child's best interest to walk away, tell an authority, and do not fight back.  Furthermore, if your kid is outmatched or outnumbered, staying in the fight is a good way to get him seriously injured.  And hey, if your kid happens to beat the daylights out of the bully, the bully's parents can sue for assault.  Seems to me it's better to take the high road and not act like an animal.

By the way, what does liberal have to do with anything?  I'd appreciate it if you kept politics out of this discussion.  Open a new topic in the Politics forum, and if you don't have access please PM Fr. Chris.  Thanks.

What I highlighted in your post is so true! And I see this as a major problem for what happened to me back in the 1980's to early 1990's can't happen in today's world.

Today's world is too regulated!

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« Reply #17 on: July 19, 2010, 07:04:40 PM »

Well, I can say that most schools these days have a zero tolerance policy on fighting, regardless of if the child is the initiator or the defender.  Therefore, it is in the child's best interest to walk away, tell an authority, and do not fight back.  Furthermore, if your kid is outmatched or outnumbered, staying in the fight is a good way to get him seriously injured.  And hey, if your kid happens to beat the daylights out of the bully, the bully's parents can sue for assault.  Seems to me it's better to take the high road and not act like an animal.

By the way, what does liberal have to do with anything?  I'd appreciate it if you kept politics out of this discussion.  Open a new topic in the Politics forum, and if you don't have access please PM Fr. Chris.  Thanks.

There's a great idea.  A kid defends himself and gets charged with assault.  How animalistic of him.  Serves him right.  I am glad the world has progressed.  Kids no longer punch a bully, instead they bring a semi-automatic carbine to school (or the mall as happened here a few years ago).  [/sarcasm]
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« Reply #18 on: July 19, 2010, 09:01:16 PM »

How should Orthodox parents handle their kid(s) being bullied at school? Tell them to "stand up to the bully," possibly resulting in a fight? Tell them to ignore the bully? Tell a teacher? Run away? Something else?  Also, does the sex of the child make a difference (e.g. is it more permissable for boys to get into fights?)

How should Orthodox parents handle their kid(s) being bullied at school? Tell them to "stand up to the bully," possibly resulting in a fight? Tell them to ignore the bully? Tell a teacher? Run away? Something else?  Also, does the sex of the child make a difference (e.g. is it more permissable for boys to get into fights?)
It's just a microcosm of the rest of the world and their lives.

Fight back and be punished as a terrorist or be a wimp and be excluded and picked on.


Or... learn that the kid who is picking on you probably has uncaring parents, and feel bad for them.

If it's a school setting probably best to show the bully that you care about them.


It's preparation for the future. That's why it's school. But don't rely on the "teachers" to be the ones who teach you the best or everything. You as parent care the most because you are here on the forum asking.

Blessings.
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« Reply #19 on: July 19, 2010, 09:34:44 PM »

Well, I can say that most schools these days have a zero tolerance policy on fighting, regardless of if the child is the initiator or the defender.  Therefore, it is in the child's best interest to walk away, tell an authority, and do not fight back.  Furthermore, if your kid is outmatched or outnumbered, staying in the fight is a good way to get him seriously injured.  And hey, if your kid happens to beat the daylights out of the bully, the bully's parents can sue for assault.  Seems to me it's better to take the high road and not act like an animal.

By the way, what does liberal have to do with anything?  I'd appreciate it if you kept politics out of this discussion.  Open a new topic in the Politics forum, and if you don't have access please PM Fr. Chris.  Thanks.

The subject is a political matter, as are nearly all things that affect people to any degree.  Sorry to have to disappoint you.  And for your information, unless my child stands there and gets the stuff beat out of him, he will be charged with fighting anyway, even if all his moves are defensive in nature.  I've seen it happen.  If you are going to get the punishment anyway, you may as well make it worth it.  Thankfully, my children did not have to live with your opinion of what was best for them, thereby condemning them to the real life of an animal - a farm animal waiting for the slaughter.  As for my house (including my wife), we abide by the words of St. Alexander Nevsky; if they come at us with a sword, we shall give them the sword.
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« Reply #20 on: July 19, 2010, 09:45:12 PM »

With all due respect, Punch, this not a political divide.

In the rural Calvinist so-called conservative parts of the southern US, if a student fights back, the teacher beats both of them with thick wooden boards that often leave marks. Former principal from the south and his wife said this to me. 50,000 students get beaten with boards every year in Texas. They have the attitude that the teacher is the one who is supposed to be cruel and inflict pain, not the fighting back victim.

Point is that you can't expect teachers to really care about you. Don't send your children to Calvinist rural southern schools where teachers whup them. US is only industrialized country in the world where schools beat students with thick boards invented during the slave days. www.nopaddle.com

In the much safer northern schools, where I went thank God, you need to come at an angle of caring for the bully. Looking back, I wish I had done this more often and told them that I liked them, and sorry if they were having problems. Yes there were some times in my life when I was beat up and am glad I fought back regardless of whether I lost, but this is minority of cases. www.nopaddle.com

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« Reply #21 on: July 20, 2010, 11:48:07 AM »

I was bullied a lot in my younger days and ended up developing an sharp wit and keen sense of humor, especially of the self-deprecating variety, that practically made my interlocutors totally helpless w/o resorting to actual physical violence, after which they themselves would be ridiculed by others for beating up the funny kid who made no effort to fight back because he already told the bully that it would be pointless for him to fight back because the bully was obviously stronger than the funny kid.

Of course, I just ended up repressing a lot of anger and by the time I was in high school, it was ready to manifest itself in physical form, but that's another story for another time. 

Back to the OP, I like Gebre's response.  I recall an incident when I was quite young when an older boy decided to pick on my friends and I by destroying our little fort in the woods behind my house while we were still in it.  One of my friend's father took us over to the older boy's house and laid out to his parents what their son was doing.

He left us alone after that.
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« Reply #22 on: July 20, 2010, 12:26:09 PM »

I too think Gebre's parents had an excellent approach to bullying. 

There really is more than one way to deal with bullying that avoids fisticuffs. 
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« Reply #23 on: July 20, 2010, 04:17:23 PM »

Found a timely article cruising around the baby websites today:

Quote
Kids who do poorly in school more likely to become bullies


Fri, Jul 16, 2010 (HealthDay News) -- Youngsters and teens who lack social problem-solving skills are more likely to become bullies, victims or both, while those who also do poorly at school are even more likely to become bullies, according to a new study.

The U.S. researchers who reviewed 153 studies from the last 30 years also found that boys bully more than girls.

"A typical bully has trouble resolving problems with others and also has trouble academically. He or she usually has negative attitudes and beliefs about others, feels negatively toward himself [or] herself, comes from a family environment characterized by conflict and poor parenting, perceives school as negative and is negatively influenced by peers," lead author Clayton R. Cook, of Louisiana State University, said in an American Psychological Association news release.

"A typical victim is likely to be aggressive, lack social skills, think negative thoughts, experience difficulties in solving social problems, come from negative family, school and community environments and be noticeably rejected and isolated by peers," Cook added.

A typical bully-victim (a child or adolescent who bullies and is bullied) has negative self-attitudes and beliefs, trouble with social interaction, poor social problem-solving skills, does poorly in school, is rejected and isolated by peers, and is negatively influenced by peers with whom he or she interacts, the review authors said.

The findings appears in the journal School Psychology Quarterly.

"We hope this knowledge will help us better understand the conditions under which bullying occurs and the consequences it may have for individuals and the other people in the same settings. Ultimately, we want to develop better prevention and intervention strategies to stop the cycle before it begins," Cook said.

Among other things, Cook recommended simultaneous anti-bullying intervention with parents, peers and schools. "Behavioral parent training could be used in the home, while building good peer relationships and problem-solving skills could be offered in the schools, along with academic help for those having trouble in this area," he concluded.


-- Robert Preidt

source

This illustrates a major reason I feel it's so important to notify teachers and administration in the school instead of just punching out the bully.  If the teacher sees a child doing poorly in class and bullying other students, he can get them to a school counselor and discuss the situation with parents.  Bullies don't always act the way they do out of sheer unkindness.  There's usually an underlying cause and if an adult can be made aware of that they can help the child who bullies and in turn help the kids being bullied.  Think about this:  If your child is the bully, wouldn't you want to know about that and get some help from the school rather than just hearing your kid is beating up others?  Or hearing your kid picked a fight with the wrong child and got beaten up himself? 
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« Reply #24 on: July 20, 2010, 06:25:56 PM »

My youngest son was being bullied on the bus last year. He knows I teach him to "turn the other cheek," but I also tell him to speak out and stand up against anyone who is trying to intimidate or bully him or others. Anyway, he knew where the boy lived, so we drove over to his house one night and sat down with the boy and his mother to resolve the situation. Fortunately, the mother was very nice and very upset at her son's behavior. The boy and my son ended up becoming very good friends.

Of course, not all parents will be receptive to such an approach. But I personally believe in approaching and confronting the people responsible for the problem (the child and/or their parents) before calling in the "authorities." One reason I believe in this approach is that it demonstrates to the bully that you are not afraid to confront them. But then if they refuse to correct the problem, then by all means go to the teachers and pricipal.


Selam

I failed to think about doing this in highschool before going to principal and expecting to fight the person. My bad. Wish I had now. I like you confronting and sticking up for kids.
Also wanbt to say that alot of times the bullies have parents that dont care and its good to try making a strong show that you like them, depending on the situation, if possible.
« Last Edit: July 20, 2010, 06:27:33 PM by rakovsky » Logged
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