Monday, January 3, 2011
I think one of the hardest things for kids (or adults) to do when they see someone being teased or bullied is to stand up for the victim. Many people won't actually take part in the bullying, but they won't say anything against it either. I want my kids to know that if they see someone being mean to another kid, it's OK to say something like "Knock it off" or throw them a look that lets them know clearly they don't think their bullying is cool. I know confronting people is really uncomfortable, and not at all easy to do. In some situations, it could just turn the bully against you, but just standing there watching makes the victim feel like everyone there agrees with the bully. And I think some bullies thrive on an audience. If they can't take a stand, at least say "Let's go" and / or at some point let the victim know that you don't agree with whatever meanness was happening.
As parents, it is definitely our job to let our kids know what is ok behavior and what isn't. Even if it isn't meant to be cruel, words can hurt, and kids should know that. It's one thing if a 2 year old says "Why are you so fat?" or "Why is your car all rusty?" or "This food is gross" and it's a completely different scene if an 10 year old says the same thing. At some point, they should know that it is rude.
That's just my 14 cents...
What's your take on teasing?