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Thread: Bullying

  1. #271
    Member Flutterby's Avatar
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    I honestly think the only way to deal with child bullying is to remove the child from the situation. Either change schools, homeschool or unschool. Frankly I think a lot of bullying is a result of boredom, because when you think about it, schools really are prisons, and the inmates have underdeveloped brains and large lunch hours. There are also potentially dangerous areas in schools like toilets where there simply is no supervision. Also I read somewhere that the most dangerous places for the average person are public toilets and carparks - they are more dangerous at night and early morning, but they are dangerous because if there is no one else around you have no witnesses and are therefore easier to attack. In the real world people are advised to always stay alert - alert victims are harder to attack physically. Elevators and stairwells can also be dangerous.
    Easiest way to stay safe - go to dangerous places in groups. Women are usually raped/kidnapped etc. when they go places on their own.
    I seem to be getting off topic here, but doing things in groups may well be one way to counter bullying if the child cannot leave the school.

    Also, if the child cannot leave the school I have two recommendations for dealing with verbal bullying.
    Type 1 - Yelling - If someone yells at you they are counting on the fact that you will be embarrassed, ashamed, etc and will avoid them. Trying walking right up to them and staring directly at them. I have actually tried this and before I even got to my bully they ran the hell away! Also if you are CALM and confident and walk right up to them with no agenda but to act weirdly and put them off, staring at them and laughing at them can really work. Works best when your friends are not watching you because you will have to stop caring that you are looking really weird when you do this.

    Type 2 - Whispering - If you overhear someone talking about you but they are talking so quietly that they think you can't hear them and you feel uncomfortable, or if they are deliberately using a stage whisper, the easiest way to confront them is to repeat what they are saying really loudly. I read that somewhere. It works because you are refusing to be uncomfortable therefore they have no power over you, plus rather than stewing about what you heard you are confronting the situation directly and therefore will feel better even if you get no result.

    Ultimately these techniques may be too difficult for a child to master though and frankly I don't think they should have to be put in an environment where they have to deal with abuse from strangers but that's just my opinion.

  2. #272
    & Badger, Ratty and Toad Mole's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Flutterby View Post
    Ultimately these techniques may be too difficult for a child to master though and frankly I don't think they should have to be put in an environment where they have to deal with abuse from strangers.
    Of course the internet is an environment where we have to deal with abuse from strangers.

    The first thing I learnt on the internet was how to take abuse from perfect strangers.

    The first temptation is to fight back but this only leads to flaming.

    I certainly don't know what to do about abuse from strangers on the internet, but I suspect that, over time, we will learn to deal with it.

    One way I have found is to analyse the abuse in social terms. This is foreign to most of us as we have been trained by literacy to think in individual terms, but as we become more familiar with the electronic media, we will learn to think in social terms.

    It amazes me how that is resisted here. But why should I be surprised as MBTI is couched entirely in individual terms, and so leaves us vulnerable to the social forces which are shaping our lives.

  3. #273
    Member Flutterby's Avatar
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    I never said anything about the internet. Most 'experts' advise keeping an eye on children and monitoring their internet use anyhow.

    If you're interested in social forces, there's a book called Herd that talks about that sort of thing.

  4. #274
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    I bullied bullies, until I entered middle school/high school girl world. No idea what was going on there. Now if anyone gives me shit I'll make their life a living hell without ever tracing it back to me.

  5. #275
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    I was bullied in middle school. Not in the sense that I was bullied physically. I ignored it. I also hated middle school with some amount of passion, didn't like the people in middle school.

    For one thing, I thought home was a better place than that horrible middle school that I had to attend. I saw most of them as fake and people that just wanted popularity for the sake of popularity.

    At some point in 8th grade, I have had enough of the two bullies (they were friends) when one of them bumped into me to make me fall. I was yelling close to a few inches in front his face. I've got so close to wanting to land a punch in that guys face. That is, until I heard the bell rang. My senses came back and I pretty much told myself that those two weren't worth messing up my education and getting in trouble. They stop bullying after that. They were even scared of what I'll do to them if they did anything that would piss me off.

    I didn't hate myself, I didn't see myself in a bad light, but I saw a lot of people in middle school in a bad light. I didn't want to associate myself with a lot of them because it wasn't how I acted and I wasn't going to act like them.

  6. #276
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    I'm fortunate that I never experienced some of the serious bullying I've heard from other people in this thread and from friends who went to public elementary, middle and high school. I spent most of my elementary and junior high school education at a very small private religious school where behaving like an aggressive bully was foreign to the kids I went to school with. At most, I experienced a little clique-ish girl bullying ("we don't like her, she can't be part of our group," that kind of thing), but nothing to the extent I've heard that other people experienced in elementary school. I count myself fortunate that I haven't.

    I work as a school counselor now for the Los Angeles Unified School District. I've worked at several different middle schools and seen a lot of bullying go on. It's absolutely ridiculous how kids treat other kids and think it's perfectly ok to do so. I now work at a local public high school, but even high school is not immune to bullies.

    Last year, I had to take my car into the shop for some minor repairs. While I was waiting for the mechanic to finish, I struck up a conversation with another young woman also waiting for her car. She had attended the same high school where I now worked and talked about her experiences there. She said during her second year of high school, she was getting so much bullying pressure from a group of mean girls that she begged her mom to let her do home schooling for the rest of high school. Her mom agreed, so that's what she did. She didn't return to the public high school until her senior year, when she felt more confident and more able to handle being around a large group of students, most of whom often express open hostility towards one another.

    Here are some suggestions I recently wrote on another forum, in answer to a woman who said that she's afraid her 11 year old god-daughter is becoming a bully. It has suggestions of how adults should deal with a bully, and how to help the bully make better behavior choices.

    As a school counselor who frequently deals with teen and pre-teen bullying, this is how I handle it. Firstly, your god-daughter must be confronted when she engages in an act of bullying. Right then, in that moment. She should not be confronted in front of her friends or people she’s bullying, but pulled aside, spoken to in private and let know that, under no uncertain terms, is it EVER OKAY to bully someone. The more times she hears this message, the more it will begin to sink in.

    Secondly, she needs to have bullying defined for her. Bullying is when you do or say something that is specifically intended to hurt another person, and to get other people to laugh at or ridicule the other person. She also needs to be coached to ask herself, “am I going to hurt someone else by doing/saying this?” before she acts. The more times your god-daughter’s coached on it and repeatedly hears the definition of bullying, the more times she will hopefully think before she acts.

    Thirdly, she needs to reflect on the other person’s feelings. This is best done after she’s privately confronted on an act of bullying. The person confronting her needs to ask, “how do you think the other person feels?” and “how would you feel if someone did/said [whatever she’s doing/saying to the other person]?” Your god-daughter needs to be able to say it out loud, putting the other person’s feelings in words. That is the most powerful, therapeutic tool towards changing behavior. The more times she is able to identify someone else’s feelings in words, the more she will be able to reflect on them and reflect on her own actions. At her age, though, she may not yet have the exact words to describe others’ feelings, so it can be helpful if the person talking with her helps her identify them. For example, “How would you feel if someone did [whatever] to you? Would you feel sad? Would you feel angry? Would you feel helpless?” Once she learns the vocabulary, so to speak, she’ll be better able to identify others’ feelings and her own.

    Lastly, once your god-daughter starts to work on stopping her bullying behavior, someone should talk with her about picking good friends. She needs to learn that friends who expect her to act like a bully and enjoy her bullying actions are not being good friends to her. She needs to find friends who like her for who she is, without acting out. Those are her true friends.
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  7. #277
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    i was bullied quite bad in middle school (as much as a girl can get bullied by boys without anything serious going on). i think their idea was that anything that didn't involve serious sexual harrasment was okay to do.
    i have to disagree that changing schools will help because i was bullied also in two different high schools that i attended after that. i dropped out of high school because it was ruining me mentally and i was slipping into a severe bipolar disorder i can't go on with my life even after 4 years

  8. #278
    Member October Rust's Avatar
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    I was bullied a bit. Not as bad as some things I've heard though, and nothing physical.

    In primary, I developed quite early and was made fun of because of my physical appearance. I got laughed at for the size of my chest, and for having hairy legs at age 10.

    Everyone had their little "group" too.. I was kind of an outsider through my entire school life.

    In high school, it wasn't as bad.. but there was this one boy who would give me quite a hard time. I remember when I was on school holidays, and it was the day before we had to go back. I had this sick feeling in my stomach and was just crying my eyes out, imagining what he'd dish out again. He would pay out some of my interests and insult my appearance (I had pimples. So did he, but it was normal for boys, not girls apparently. On casual day I wore a top with a jacket, and one of my friends said something about taking the jacket off, because it was a pretty hot day. He said "yuck, who would want to see her flabby body"). Thankfully he moved schools. I heard he threw rocks at some cars or something. Nice kid.

    I'm sure more things were said about me, but I didn't hear of them. I stuck to myself and developed an "I-won't-take-no-shit" attitude and people left me alone. I dropped out because it was so lonely, though.

    I don't think my self-esteem has ever really recovered from any of this..
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  9. #279
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    Kicked down stairs, had rocks thrown at me...

    Middle school can be tough when you're different.
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  10. #280
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    I was bullied when I was 15. It was one of my worst times but I'm glad it's over. You see, in my home country's society, everybody has to be the same meaning people who try to be different (whether it's with their looks, attitude, personal preferences) get frowned on, talked upon, made fun of, bullied.

    So yeah. To most people in my class, that was their best class ever. It was filled with attractive, talkative and sociable people. But I was the introverted, shy and quiet one with long hair. At the start of the year, in one of my classes, this big guy randomly shouted that I looked like an alien. And from then on, he would always shout something relating to me looking like an alien in every class. When he said something, the whole class would just laugh. Even if it wasn't funny. Remember how I told about my country's defective culture. An individual would have to give up his/her personal integrity and preferences and do what the rest of the pack does.

    So I just endured being laughed at for 1 whole year. I was thinking of things such as suicide, grabbing my father's gun and bringing it to school to shoot that dickhead or maybe even his whole crew. I couldn't report this bullying case because I didn't want to be looked down on. I acted normal at home. My relatives saw me as a happy person and if I told them the truth then they would look down on me and forever remember me as weak. If my dad found out, I'm fucked. Having a long dynasty in the military and then finding out that your son is a weakling would just bring shame. And what's more is, he would probably go to school and confront those dickheads himself.

    Imagine if that 15 year old kid that gets bullied by the whole class's father comes to the rescue. The class would just laugh afterwards and have a new reason to tease me. Ohhhh don't tease him because his dad might come to the rescue.

    FUCK THOSE TIMES. FUCK HIGHSCHOOL. FUCK THAT COUNTRY.

    I'm really grateful that I was given the opportunity to migrate into Australia where there is much more freedom. It is a bit lonely but people don't give a fuck for everything that happens to your life. They don't judge you for being different and that's what I love here.

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