Our Plea: Stop The Bullying!

With the recent rash of young people killing themselves because of the harassing horror they’ve gone through, it’s time to say STOP. No more bullying!

I do not want to hear one more story about a teenager or child who has been bullied. I do not want to see one more news account about how a young person committed suicide because of being harassed and bullied.

Instead, I want to hear how young people are standing up to bullies and how bullies are becoming people who help others—instead of hurting others.

This can happen. We’ve done it before, and we can do it again.

We changed after the attacks of September 11, 2001, and the news of multiple school shootings. We became a society with zero tolerance for threats—and to report any threat immediately because any threat could be serious.

This was not an easy change. Young people tend to use threatening language to express their feelings. But we became clear: If you’re mad, say that you’re mad. Don’t say that you want to kill someone.

It’s now time to adopt a zero-tolerance stance on bullying.

Ellen Degeneres pleads for no more bullying.

Bullying has evolved into a level of terrorism. Bullying is no longer the shove-you-around-the-playground harassment that I witnessed when I was a child. The Internet and cell phones have pushed bullying to a new, dangerous level. Young people now photograph and videotape acts of bullying—or private moments that are meant to be kept private—and post them for the world to see. Technology has added a new level of humiliation.

Extreme bullying can so deeply wound a young person’s soul that the person who was bullied can commit suicide. I’m not exaggerating. In the past month, the national news has reported four teenagers committing suicide because of bullying. They ranged in age from 13 to 18. One school district in my state has had seven suicides in the past year, and parents are angry because most are connected to bullying.

Which young people are bullied? One study reported that 96 percent of young people are bullied at least once. According to GLSEN, which recently published a national school climate survey, the percentage of students who felt unsafe at school because of a personal characteristic included:

Sexual orientation—61%
Gender expression—40%
Religion—16%
Gender—10%
Race or ethnicity—8%
Disability—5%
Other reasons—13%

The young people who are most likely to get bullied in one community or in one school can be radically different from the kids who are bullied in another place. It depends on who is in the minority. It depends on who is considered an outcast. It may be a Muslim young person. It may be child who is autistic. It may be a young person who is gay.

No young person deserves to be bullied. Ever. No matter who they are.

As parents, it’s time to be very clear to our kids that bullying and harassment are unacceptable. This not only includes what gets posted on social networking sites or spread through e-mail attachments, it also includes how young people talk to each other. Racist, homophobic, and sexist remarks are out. Standing up for kids who are (or may be) getting picked on—should be in.

This also entails working with school officials. Teachers and administrators can be bullies as well as young people. (And there are too many stories of that as well.) I was pleased when one school district fired a teacher for harassing a teenager with a physical disability.

Bullying also is an academic issue. We all talk about “no child left behind,” yet, ironically, any child who is bullied is left behind. Why? Because research clearly shows that students who are frequently harassed have grade point averages almost half a grade lower than students who are harassed less often. It’s hard to concentrate on learning when you’re scared of who’s going to punch you, make fun of you, gang up on you, or post something nasty about you on Facebook.

We also need to be careful not to bully the bullies. They’re people, too. But we need to intervene and work with them to get them to stop. We need to find out why they’re harassing young people. A young person who bullies needs to learn that bullying and harassment are unacceptable behaviors. Completely unacceptable.

So let’s take the issue of bullying as seriously as we took the issues of school shootings and the attacks on our country in 2001. Bullying needs to stop. Harassment needs to stop. All our kids need to feel safe so that they can develop into the best people they can be.
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Sources:

U.S. Department of Education, “Statement by U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan on the Recent Deaths of Two Young Men,” U.S. Department of Education, October 1, 2010.

ParentFurther, High-Risk Behaviors, Bullying and Violence
http://www.parentfurther.com/high-risk-behaviors/bullying

Times Wires, “In Suicide’s Wake, a Message to Gay Teens: Hang On; You Are Not Alone,” St. Petersburg Times, October 1, 2010.

GLSEN, The 2009 National School Climate Survey (New York: GLSEN, 2010).

Stuart Wolpert, “Bullying in Schools Pervasive, Disruptive, and Serious, UCLA Study Finds,” UCLA News, December 8, 2003.

Norman Draper and Kelly Smith, “Schools Struggle with Gay Policies, StarTribune, October 2, 2010.

How to Stop Bullying, www.how-to-stop-bullying.com

Be friends with Happy Hoods on facebook! It is a small, but growing community of people committed to Bully awareness. Support for those that are being bullied, as well as the ones doing the bullying.

if your a bully you need to stop because it could effect your lif and you won’t have any thing no money,no shelter,no food and you won’t have wife how do i know because it happen to alot of peoople because they bullied when they were in shool

Hi there,

I know that bullying is a horrible thing to go through…I know, I was bullied when I was in school too…which was back a long time ago. There are other forms of bullying too. Older school bully’s and even after they “graduate” from school continue their reign of terror on elderly and disabled folks…a situation I deal with on a daily basis. Since they are not in school anymore and are suppose to be “adults” they often find other ways to get their thrills… I have had my life and property threatened, endless 24/7 harassment, property damage, littering, and nearly death by being run over while in my own yard. This, like bullying of kids, is a pretty nasty thing to have to deal with, especially when there is very little one can do about it. There are suppose to be laws to prevent this but far too often it is ignored and “considered to be a minor incident and not worthy of further action”. I wish others would make this known to the world but sadly, most don’t bother… I just hope others will step forward and make this known to all… it just has to stop for everyone! Tnx from Ol Painful…
4

iknow its sooooooooooooooooo horrrible and i know to may people to have commite d suicude over it

my daughter is the type of kid that’ll be friends with anyone, she’s caring, loving, sweet and sensitive. she has tons of friends and she’s and amazing ten year old. she’s always happy. but one day she came home crying because a bully was picking on her and a friend, she asked me people have to be so mean, i told her that little girl might have problems at home and thinks that being mean is the only way she knows how to handle her own personal stress and maybe she just needs a friend, so the next day that little girl started picking on my daughter and her friend, pulling there hair calling them names and starting rumers about them. my daughter walked up to her in the hallway, put her hand on the girls shoulder and said it’s ok, i like you, the look on that little girls face was priceless, that little girl hugged my daughter and appoliged to her and her friend, now the three girls are like sisters and that little girl doesn’t bully kids anymore.

At the beginning of the year my daughter (14 years) was poked and prodded by a 18 year old in welding class with a piece of welding metal, I contacted the school who talked to the boy, and told me that they were going to speak to his parents. 3 weeks ago I talked to the parents and they were never informed.

The reason I spoke to them was because another 14 year old was sexually assaulted by him with a crutch under a desk in class while the teacher looked on. The parent of this girl called police, and contacted the school and the boy was suspended. Now the school is allowing him back into school stating because of his mental illness they cannot refuse to reinstate him. His parents are pastors in the community, yet they told the other parent and I they had lost control of him, and that because he was 18 years old they could really do nothing with him.

Both my daughter and her friend love the school, want to be there but not while he is there. What recourse do we have since the school and local authorities won’t touch this situation since he is “disabled” Our kids shouldn’t have to be afraid in school and I am almost certain this had caused irreversible damage to both girls. What is the next step after contacting the Superintendent?

i have 3 kids all are passive ,my 21 year old was bullied ,and i had to stand by and watch as he played with these bully s ,but one day he turned around and started hitting this bully ,well he was never picked on again, now i am going through it again with my young son and my daughter on there bus and school ,my son has come off the bus crying more then i can handle ,and my daughter hates school and she is very passive ,she won t tell me who is bulling them she does not want to tell but i get it out of her ,my son has been tripped in the play ground and has his belongings taking from him on the bus and told they are throwing it out the window ,and recently a book bag was thrown at his head ,i am very angry ,about this ,when all i hear is it was an accident ,i was bullied all my life and it brings back all my feelings ,of pain and sadness it makes me cry that now my kids have to go through it ,what the heck is wrong with parents letting there kids do this ,most of these parents are very mouthy and pushy ,,i want to confront them but my husband said s to stay out of it ,and my kids have to fend for them self at 6 and 8 yrs old ,i am just so confused ,about this bulling in these schools ,and all s the principal said s is it was an accident and he tripped or they were playing catch with a book bag , since when is playing catch with a book bag or taking kids hats and playing catch with it o k ,my son is crying to much for me to take ,i wish he would just pop them one ,so they stop bothering him !!!! and i use to teach my older son no violence ,and i taught my 2 young ones the same but how can i do that ,when my kids are constantly being bothered by these rotten kids mimi from west milford

1

It’s easy to say, “report the bully to an adult.” The reality for us has been that reporting it to school teachers, counselors & principals has only made the problem worse. My son was switched to a different class, the principal talked to the class 3 times. We had meetings with counselors & principals. Finally, my son was taken out of PE altogether! He was bullied because he was overweight and a quiet kid. Yet he was taken out of the very class he needed. Bullying continued at lunch & the bus stop. It wasn’t until my son was hit in the head with a water bottle that we got results…he punched the bully in the nose. Yes, he got a ticket & we had to go to court, but the bullying finally stopped. Other kids even thanked my son, saying the kid had bullied them too. School officials refuse to see this is a problem. Now, 2 yrs later, 6 ft tall & in good shape, no one messes with him.

1

It’s easy to say, “report the bully to an adult.” The reality for us has been that reporting it to school teachers, counselors & principals has only made the problem worse. My son was switched to a different class, the principal talked to the class 3 times. We had meetings with counselors & principals. Finally, my son was taken out of PE altogether! He was bullied because he was overweight and a quiet kid. Yet he was taken out of the very class he needed. Bullying continued at lunch & the bus stop. It wasn’t until my son was hit in the head with a water bottle that we got results…he punched the bully in the nose. Yes, he got a ticket & we had to go to court, but the bullying finally stopped. Other kids even thanked my son, saying the kid had bullied them too. School officials refuse to see this is a problem. Now, 2 yrs later, 6 ft tall & in good shape, no one messes with him.

From a parent who’s son has been bullied, I have learned to speak up and teach my child to speak up and say enough is enough. We have to put a stop to this and say no. We have to teach our kids to respect each other, to accept one another for who we are. We live in a society that everything we do is Judged by others. We are judged on everything , the way we talk, the way we walk or eat or the way we are dressed. We are judged by our race or ethnicity. We have to remember that we are all human beings, we were all created equal. There not one person better than the other. Our kids learn from us. We have to remember that our behavior reflects on our kids. It’s our job as a parent to teach our kids not to become a bully, to be involved in their lives, to give them enough attention and love because that’s what they need and ask for. I hope one day we can change this world in to a better place for our kids and for the future generations to come.

Hi this is Gina, i have something to share about protecting our children from any danger, specially guard them even if were not with them, i just found a good solutions with regards with this problem and hopefully it will work for those parents as well looking for the safety for their children. while surfing the internet i found some sites discussing of how we protect our kids anytime anywhere. http://safekidzone.com. just try to visit and see if you might be interested on it. its a kind of interesting on my part specially for those parents whose working at all times.

5

This topic cannot be over-emphasized. So many kids suffer, daily. Parents often encourage their child to go to a teacher, or guidance counselor. But these professionals are often not trained, and simply summon in the bully, saying to him/her: “So-and-so is complaining about you”. End result? The bullying gets far worse, because your kids gets labeled a ‘snitch’. Before telling them to go to a professional, we need to know that the professional knows how to handle it well (they have to do it in anonymous form, protecting your child, or to manage to somehow ‘witness’ the events going on, or ‘have heard about it from a teacher’).
Dave, from:
KidsBrandsForLess.com

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