I touched a little bit on the subject of bullying in my last real blog post. As a child who suffered from bullying almost through my entire school career, I know firsthand what it’s like to deal with the abuse and torment from another. I saw a nasty statistic the other day that said 90%… NINETY PERCENT!!!!! … of elementary school kids say that they’ve been bullied. How can this be? Who is paying attention to these kids? Then on top of that, did you know that out of 90% of those kids, 40% of them never report the bullying?
I could never wrap my head around the bullying that I faced as a kid. I was always so nice to everyone. I always gave people the benefit of the doubt but for some reason there were others that were so adamant about saying cruel things to me. I’ve been called ugly, fat… made fun of the way I dressed, etc. My mother always tried to tell me to ignore it but when you are face to face with it EVER SINGLE DAY OF YOUR LIFE, it is quite hard to ignore. My relief came the day that I realized that I was different, and by God I was going to flaunt my differences. I welcomed the attention with my different colored hair, piercings and tattoos. I now give people a reason to talk, and I relish in it.
It took forever for me to get to that point and to an extent it has greatly affected me as an adult. I’m still trying to make others like me and accept me at a cost to my own sanity. I used it as a defense mechanism but it’s something that I’ve become accustomed to and I have a hard time saying no to people. This angers me that I allowed those bullies from my childhood influence me as an adult. Then I heard a story that set my mind ablaze and my heart poured out for this woman.
Karen Klein, a 68 year old bus monitor from upstate New York faced bullies of her own. The very kids that she was supposed to watch out for decided that they would taunt her, and in the most veracious way ever. They said things like it was her fault that a family member committed suicide. That to me is the most evil thing you could say to someone. Some called her fat; some made sexual advances towards her and threatened her with physical violence. SHE IS 68 YEARS OLD FOR GOODNESS SAKE! I’m sorry but where I come from we respect our elders!
I’m so glad that many people all over the world are coming to her aid and are supporting her. This entire thing was caught on video.
As for the kids, the only word that comes to mind from me is sociopath. I think these kids should be disciplined to the fullest extent and if I were Ms. Klein I would sue the hell out of them. I’m not even kidding. The parents should also attend “anti-bullying” classes with the students to ensure that the kids never do this again.
However, the psych major in me wanted to understand why kids bully in the first place. What would bring them to assault and taunt a 68 year old woman, or even a 5 year old defenseless little girl?
According to education.com, the majority of bullying cannot be defined from one specific source. It takes a lot of different community factors for a child to become a bully. Maybe they’re being bullied by a parent or older sibling and the only way to face it is to take it out on another child. There is the possibility that the child gets away with so much at home because the parental units are too busy for hands on time with their kid. Even peer pressure has a huge role in this. They want to be the superior kid in front of their peers. Either way, we really need to take a stand against bullies.
I never want to face my child coming home again after dealing with a bully. I’ve been through that with them and it sucked because I knew how they felt. The situation was resolved quite quickly which I’m super excited about. The school district took a stand against bullying and I couldn’t have been more proud. However, this isn’t always the case with so many.
Please help me take a stand against bullying. If you are a parent, discuss this with your children. Let them know it is not okay to make fun of others. Also let them know that you are an open door if they are being bullied themselves. Don’t allow them to become victims. Help them take a stand too.
I finish this blog almost in tears and mostly because it is time for me to move on from my childhood. I’ve dealt with more than I should have to as a young child and this is my way of letting those demons go. Thank you so much for reading as always and please let me know what you think about ways to stop bullying.