Say Something: Bullies

“Was there a time you wanted (or needed) to say something, but kept quiet?”

This prompt leads me to a topic I’ve been pondering for a while but have kept to myself. BULLIES. I may have touched on this topic in the past, having been bullied by people of various ages, authorities and peers, throughout my life. Verbal abuse had a large, negative impact on my life so I am often talking to my children about not being bullies and treating people as you’d like to be treated.

As much as I try to make sure that they know better, I think that who and what they’re exposed to will make a difference. This is why I’m in a bit of a pickle with my oldest daughter. She’s a sweet and caring, relatively sensitive little girl, and she has some great friends. She has friends whose parents I get along with and friends that are adorable and helpful, ones that love her siblings. She has play dates and goes to Girl Scouts and ballet, they hold hands and have fun together.

The trouble is… one of these friends is a bully. She calls names, says mean things, and has a lot of attitude. I don’t know what to do about it. I’m always saying that I want to pick my battles with my children. I really don’t want to begin choosing their friends at such a young age, but I’m not confident that simple explanations about bullying will suffice if my daughter is surrounded by this behavior so often. I’ve tried talking to the little girl and explaining why it’s not okay to make fun of people or be mean but my correcting her doesn’t seem to make a difference when she goes home where the behavior is acceptable.

It’s tough because I don’t want to alienate the little girl but I don’t want this behavior to influence my daughter’s either. My plan is to continue encouraging positivity among my children and this child. I also think I may limit their play time together and quietly nudge my daughter in the direction of some of the nicer kids. I think that bullying can start at such a young age and it’s so important to nip it in the bud.

What do you think you would do in this situation?

1 thought on “Say Something: Bullies

  1. Bad company corrupts good character. Many parents know their children are bullies, but they don’t care. It’s the “kids will be kids” mentality of this generation’s parents. My thing is, if I’m your daughter, I’d tell my friend to chill on saying hateful things. I can’t be around you if you’re going to say mean things. Don’t be afraid to choose your daughter’s friends, if it means she’s around sensible, good-moraled people.

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