Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Over at Parent Talk Today, Stacy Lipson tells her story in a guest post of being bullied as a young girl, and how long the bullying lasted -- till she was 16.
As yet another news story breaks about yet another child who kills himself because he's been bullied to death already, more and more stories like Stacy's are coming out of the woodwork. I would guess most everyone has known someone or seen someone get bullied, either in youth or even in adulthood. Bullies, it seems, can continue the pattern as long as they can get away with it.
Ironically, it's the bully who has the self-esteem issue in the first place. To make himself feel better, he has to make someone else feel bad. Some people are easy targets. And if you've ever been that easy target, then you know how hurtful and painful being bullied can be.
I have a few solutions that should go to market right away:
How about a BULLIES BE GONE spray? Anyone who is bullied would be issued a FREE can of this special spray to be used immediately upon the first sign of teasing. The person about to be teased would simply take out the can, point, spray -- and the bully gets it. Ingredients in the bottle or can could smell like a skunk, for instance, or freshly deposited dog crap, vomit, or any other awful scent (your choice) that would send the bully on his way. The nurse's office at school would have a supply of them on hand at all times, as needed. Bullies wouldn't be able to access the spray, however, because it would come with Bully Detecting Radar. At the mere touch, an alarm would sound, scaring the bully off and alerting school officials of his thwarted attempt to access the spray.
Or how about selling NO BULLIES ALLOWED t-shirts? Proceeds would benefit non-profits that promote REQUIRED parenting classes that teach parents how to detect if they have a bully child at home or if their child is being bullied outside of the home.
And how about those REQUIRED PARENTING CLASSES? Your child would not be able to advance to the next grade level, beginning in kindergarten, unless you've taken and passed the course. Classwork could be developed that would focus on each grade level, the type of bullying that might be seen in that grade level, and what parents need to do to protect their children from either situation. Because as we know, this kind of behavior begins at home. Therefore, the classes would also address any parenting issues that might affect a child's behavior and lead to bullying. Not only would the classes educate, but they may also act as a deterrent and help create a new culture that does not accept bullying behavior.
Finally, as the sign above says, we need to create NO BULLY ZONES. Wherever bullying occurs, we need to post the NO BULLY ZONE sign. Post them on sides of school buildings, in the playground, on playground equipment, in hallways, in the lunchroom or cafeteria, at daycare centers, in the grocery store, on the doors of kids' bedrooms, or wherever else bullying occurs, up goes a sign.
If you have a solution you'd like to share, post a comment below. It's time to take a stand against the schoolyard bully to keep the bullies out of the workplace later.
And maybe save a life.
Because we don't want to have to create more suicide prevention programs. Enough is enough, don't you think?