Bullies

Back when I was still in 3rd grade I had a bully problem with a 6 grader. He was some who had physically developed early however his mentality hadn’t quite caught up. His mates and he used to do childish things that come with all forms of bullying. Giving my friends and I dead arms, kicking a ball into our heads, taking shots at us with food and the general name calling. Nothing really out of the ordinary right? His particular favourite target was me, probably because he got a reaction as I didn’t like to back down, and I was quite a smart arse.
It eventually got to the point where something needed to be done and one of my friends told their parents, who then proceeded in telling mine.
My mom thought getting the teaches involved and all that, but thankfully my father told her that it was a fathers job to teach his son how to stand up for himself. He then took me aside and said possibly the only peace of parenting advice I have remembered.
“Next time he’s going to do something, you bloody hit him first!”
Not the most PC approach to parenting I agree, however when the time came like the ‘good little boy’ I was 😉 I took his advice to the letter.
It was my first fight and I’m proud to say I won. Given I only hit him once before a teacher saw and pulled me off the bully.
Then the whole process of calling the parents and threats from the school and the bully’s parents off suspension and what not. Luckily for me one of the mothers of my mates had already called the school and said what was going on, so I basically got off with 2 Lunch time detentions.
Now why do I bring this story up? Well recently I was wondering how my parents would of gone in the advice category if it had been this modern day form of bullying I was up against. By this I mean cyber-bullying.
Because of technological advancements people in the 40+ age bracket are largely overwhelmed or unable to compete at the same level as people between the ages of 6 and 30.
So if there 9 year old was being cyber-bullied would the child gain anything by getting the aid of a parent or teacher, as we were lectured to do.
Sadly I think in most cases the answer would be no.
Why because they cant relate. In my case my dad had some advice to give, all be it a little barbaric. However given the same circumstances in the modern age where cyber-bullying has taken over I think parents would be left wanting.
So is there a solution? Sure if you believe what company’s and political bodies tell us. The first is keeping your child off social media until they’re 13, as Facebook suggests. However kids are smart, and in this area most are smarter than their parents, so prohibiting them or more accurately believing you can do so is naive.
Secondly is monitoring your child’s use by friending them on Social Media. Again this suggests a level of naivety by the political bodies if they think children will simply let this occur.
I think the only way is for parents to actively get on these Social Media sites and participate and then learn what occurs. First hand knowledge would be the only solution to this problem, in my mind.
However I am open to other suggestions if there are some.

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