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April 16th, 2010 by kristen

Our Kids are Counting on Us

bully_1Over the next few weeks, I’ll be delivering a series of public service announcements to raise awareness about the dangers of bullying. We have seen what bullying can do to our children — the hate, violence and even death. As I’ve often said, this is a real issue that is not going away, and the Dr. Phil team is determined to do everything we can to ensure that kids are protected from those who mercilessly taunt, intimidate and abuse them.  

That’s why we’re doing this anti-bullying campaign. Despite all the news media attention surrounding Phoebe Prince’s tragic suicide last month, so many adults still may not realize just how widespread bullying has become. They don’t understand that cyberbullying can be just as painful as getting beaten up behind the gym after school. Many parents, and even teachers, still dismiss bullying with the old line about “kids being kids” — which, in my book, just shows that so many adults can be a quart or two low on empathy.

I can’t stress enough that someone who stands by passively and watches a kid being terrorized is just as bad as the actual bully. If your child is being picked on, don’t tell them to quit whining and go work it out. Don’t tell them to quit tattling and go work it out. Instead, moms and dads, sit down with your child and talk about what’s happening. And if you’re not sure where to start, the following coping strategies can help. Let your child know: Don’t get into a fistfight or retaliate against a bully. Speak confidently when telling a bully not to physically touch you. Don’t believe the insults about you. Write down your feelings.

And, if you have a friend who is being bullied, remember that you are not a snitch if you report it. Talk to a parent, a teacher or an adult whom you trust. Please don’t let your friend suffer in silence. For more coping techniques, you can click on any of the hyperlinks throughout this blog.

There are steps you can take as well to keep your child safe: Get involved at his or her school, and demand tough anti-bullying laws and no-nonsense educators who will go the extra mile to “bully-proof” their schools.

Bullies are nothing more than cowards. We have to answer the call to action. Let’s continue to sound the alarm that bullying is not OK. In the public service announcements, you’ll hear me say, “Our kids are counting on us.” I pray that we all take the message to heart.

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69 Responses to “Our Kids are Counting on Us”

  1. April Robertson says:

    It really scares me to hear about these bulling stories on t.v. as i am a mother of 3 kids. I have a son in kindergarden who is having a problem with a boy in his class. I have talked to his teacher and the principles at the school..but it still continues. Right now …it;s following him around on the playground, pushing him down and not letting him up..mostly intemidating stuff..but if it’s not stopped whats it gonna turn into …i don’t know what else to do. The teachers act like it’s not that big a deal, but my child has cried cause he didn’t want to go to school because of this. I think it’s a big deal. I can’t keep him out of school cause then he will fail…i’ve told him to tell the teacher when it’s happening..but he said he has tried and they tell him to go sit back down…they are supposed to help him..not ignore him. I think that’s a big reason why this stuff continues…the child speaks up but noone will listen. It happens at P.E. when they are 2 teachers per 6 classes of kindergardeners on the playground at one time…i understand they can’t watch them all at the same time. But when they no there is a problem with a certain child..why can’t they stop him from bothering mine!! It makes me really angry…and scared for my child. It really hurts me to have to send him to school when he is scared. What do i do?

  2. Hallelujah Dr. Phil… Thank you, Thank You, THANK YOU!!! This is the best news I’ve heard since Avery was born. Your anti-bully public announcements are an AMAZING GRACE miracle to all those being bullied and a beautiful memorial to victims of bullycide: suicide from being bullied. I feel certain will be life saving on many levels.

    ANTI-BULLY PLEDGE

    http://www.drphil.com/shows/show/115

    LIFE STRATEGIES FOR DEALING WITH BULLIES

    http://www.drphil.com/shows/show/1156

    TECHNIQUES for avoiding tit for tat escalation

    http://www.tonguefu.com/

    Parents like their children and children like their parents to be proud of them so we cannot count on children telling adults they’re bullied because embarrassing both as a child and adult. As well, many try to handle on their own to not worry parents or others plus bullies may have threatened to hurt loved ones if speak up etc.

    So, I’m so happy you are doing these public announcements Dr. Phil. That “bully box” idea of man on your show a good idea, too. As well, I think having large posters of help numbers posted in school in lunch rooms, bathrooms etc. As well billfold side cards with helpful numbers & even tips on back to do if are or know someone bullied. Even signs that say Bully Free Zone. Many things are learned by rote. Sadly many have confused rudeness & bullying with being assertive.

    We still need Emotional and Life Skill Education K-12 DAILY classes in schools led by your, Jay and y’all’s colleagues, i.e., Dr. Lawlis. (For age appropriate topics, role playing & watching shows like yours and THE DOCTORS when applicable.) Simply because parents cannot teach what they have not learned and doing what is right, like NOT bullying, isn’t learned through osmosis and from being taught and practicing.

    There’s no debate who needs to teach children most beneficial behavior and consequences of misbehavior so no other child has to pay with their life, like Phoebe did. Cycles continue because parents cannot teach what they have not learned. Bullying is misbehavior that costs lives. Thanks for making my day Dr. Phil hearing that you’ll be doing public announcements on stamping out bullying so that bullying doesn’t stamp out any more lives, like Phoebe’s.

    I’m a 3 time suicide survivor of bullycide from being a battered wife. Since, 1982, refuse to let any person, place or thing EVER again drag me over onto booing section of myself to where I become my worst abuser attempting suicide. Having been bullied online I can say I have revisited feelings of hopelessness as an adult… without going into. Tell tech staff if bullied whether a child, teen, or an adult.

    I wish Phoebe had lived to join me as a survivor and not believed the lies of depression. Depression is often a sign something needs to change and I hope your public announcements will begin a positive life saving “change reaction” and I 100% believe will.

    Folks should never be cavalier about suicide for many believe persons do for attention and as a survivor I can tell you it’s instead often from the depths of utter despair/depression. Depression is a sign something needs to change and not always a chemical imbalance, e.g., and instead unhealthy environments/situations like bullying. Medication becomes a co-dependent when changes that need to be made are not addressed as if medication will magically teach life skills or stop the abuse of someone. THANK YOU DR. PHIL for taking the initiative TO TEACH.

  3. Michae Eshleman says:

    I have to deal with bully. I’m smart and handsome, but girls can be cruel sometimes with eyes insult behavior. So, what do I do…I thought carefully and remembers the movie from Indina Jones “RAIDERS OF THE LOST ARK” at the end when he closes his eyes and ‘don’t look’! So I closes my eyes for afew seconds and open and the girls stopped. It WORKS! She had the same problem when another girl were cruel to her, so I explained it to her to “close your eyes”. Then I said “Open your eyes” after the girl couldn’t be anymore bully. The world just stop. So, that’s how I deals with bully. I used to be a bully, too. But when I traveled around the World, I learned the hard lesson. When my family moves back to America, again. I asked all the children I’ve harmed for forgiveness. Lucky for me, all was forgiven ‘cept one girl. I had to help her against the guys bullyin’ her, ’til she forgiven me and her brother :) Spread the words, talk about it, shares with your friends and family. The more we talk about it, the awareness will be better for the tomorrow.

  4. Thank God! I am so grateful you are taking this stand and making the public more aware of it. With the birth of many new technologies, bullying has become more abundant and more abusive. It makes me sick. As a former teacher, just as much as academics, I stressed being nice to and respecting others. There was nothing I could tolerate more than being mean! Good job, Dr. Phil. Keep up the good work and thanks for making the public more and more aware.

  5. Sandra says:

    Bullying is learned behavior, and anything learned can be unlearned. THE bully and the victim of bullying both need help. The bully needs to learn to relate to others without abusing power. And the victim of bullying needs some practical tools to cope with the problem.
    Often, the bully does not know how to relate to others and fails to understand the feelings of those he intimidates. He needs to be monitored and taught to communicate properly. “Unless new behaviors are learned and adopted, bullies continue to bully throughout their lifetime. They bully their mates, their children, and possibly their underlings in their place of business.
    Training children early in life to be empathetic can help to prevent them from turning into bullies. Educators in some lands are working with a new style of education called empathy training. The objective is to teach students as young as five years old to understand the feelings of others and to treat people with kindness. While there is yet little statistical data on the long-term impact, early results suggest that those who have gone through the training are less aggressive than those who have not.
    As a parent, you should not leave such training entirely to some school program. If you do not want your child to become a bully, you need to teach him by word and by example how to treat others with respect and dignity.

    Parents too can start early in preparing their children to deal wisely with bullies. They can, for example, use role-playing games with their children to demonstrate how to project a sense of confidence.
    Even physical posture—standing up straight—can send a subtle message that dissuades some bullies. Making eye contact, keeping hands and arms relaxed, and speaking in a firm, steady voice may help too. Parents are urged to teach their child to walk away, to avoid bullies, and to ask a trustworthy adult for help, such as a schoolteacher.
    Eliminating bullying behavior starts with educating the family. Parents who make themselves available to their children, listening patiently and empathetically to their concerns, instill in them a feeling that they are wanted, supported, and loved. Many professionals in the field of parenting and peer problems urge parents to provide their children with a positive view of themselves. Such a healthy outlook reduces their appeal as targets in the eyes of bullies.
    But more is involved than simply talking. Each member of the family needs to learn to treat others with respect and dignity and to cultivate empathy. So do not tolerate any bullying behavior in your household. Make your home a safe haven, where respect and love prevail.

  6. kelea junc says:

    I need to talk with you about a school setting where they serve a lot of deaf and hard of hearing students. i would like to present the information on BULLY, BULLIED & BY-Standers, but i have a strong sense of not wanting to “implant” the idea of bullicide because most of our students come from a home that has no sign language communication. therefore, those students with limit language ability has no ideaf of what is really going on out there such as driving them to kill themselves, etc. if i do share info, i d feel as if i am implanting the idea. keep in mind, those students are mostly 2nd language learners meaning their native language is spoken at home so their visual sign language is not used at home. therefore their language acquisition is unfortunately delayed. i strongly believe most of them do not know about those who were driven to commit suicide. what do you suggest me to do about this becuase i would like to give a presentation on bully, bullied & by-standers without giving them some ideas that it is good idea to kill themselves.

  7. Kamini Singh says:

    Dear Dr Phil
    My son has been bullied within an inch of his life, at a Christian School!!!

    The Principal’s response was that this name calling is just ‘Banter.’
    I find that, on some levels, resilience is a very Darwinistic idea, you know, survival of the most resilient, survival of the fittest.
    Thankyou for giving you attention to this matter.
    I am writing from Australia, and yes, its true, Bullying is rampant and systematically entrenched here. Do you remember Jane Elliot’s ‘Blue eyed/Brown Eyed experiment’ well, Dr Phil, could we not come up with some sort of ‘Bullying’ social experiment?
    Love You and Robyn xoxoxoxoxoxoxox

  8. Kamini Singh says:

    G’day again,
    Re: The Bulying social experiment…it could be called ‘Ingroup/Outgroup’
    xoxoxoxoxo

  9. Erica says:

    Here is a link to a Non-P that has I think the best program ever for all types of bullies. http://www.peacefulsolution.org There is no religion involved. It is based on morals, which this world is lacking right now! Children are not born bullies; they only know what they are taught. I hope this helps, it did me!!!!
    Erica age 17

  10. nini says:

    i don’t believe that kids watching passively is all as bad as the bully. some kids just don’t want to get involve, just like adults, when they see a fight starting. they can be scared of retaliation when the bully finds out they “snitched”.

  11. Whitney says:

    Amen!!!! Amen!!!! Amen!!!! I’m so glad you are committed to raising awareness! I’m a school counselor and see first hand, every day, the dangers of bullying. I have actually started a “Lunch Bunch” with several groups of girls that meet once a week during lunch to address bullying b/c we were having so many problems with relational aggression. Schools have to recognize that bullying is serious and can’t be taken lightly! Please keep up the good work, Dr. Phil!

  12. Kristin says:

    Dear DrPhil~ I have tried to reach you over and over again. I have tried twitter, your blog, your producers, and your interns. I am tring to get you help for my child. I was in a very abusive marriage and had the couage to walk away. It took alot of planning and talking with one of your interns (who helped me and talked to me so much, she was great!). I got away from the beating, the punches, the wipping, and the bruises. The worse thing David has done is choked me to the point I blacked out. He taught he killed me and was proud and drinking a beer when I came too. I am proud to say I walked away he was home my brother helped me pack the truck and I got to 2 best things in my life out of that house. So proud! I took the 16 hour drive to Yorkville, IL on December 31st. And, havent looked back. Until now. My children are my world, my rock, my heart and soul. I moved in with my sister Angel, her husband Bill (he is a hard working U.S Marshal), Bry (13), Kylie (5), Zack (4) and Cole 18 months.. Then there is mine Aiden who is 2 and Danika she will be 1 next month on the 5th. My sister moved into a nice house BUT my son Aiden has very bad ashtma and cant breath in the basement where we stay. He was in the hosptial 3 times last month becasue his breathing was so bad and the treatments wherent working. I finially got an interview for the 20th and I am hoping to get the job. But even then I dont think I could get out of here into a home that would be healthy for Aiden. I want to know if you could find it in your heart to help me. Like I said I am a single mother who cant get anybody to help me. If I had family to ask I would have. If I had friends to stay with I would have asked them. This has been the roughest year and I have been threw alot. I have been threw rape (54 stitches up inside), I have been threw my parents hating me, I been threw my family turning there backs on me, I been threw the beatings, the bruises, the pain, the makeup (2xs)two differnet relationships. I have had it rough since 17 ten days before my 18th birthday ever since then its been down hill. My kids are the best thing that ever happened to me I think I would have given up if it werent for them I would be in the ground. I am not asking for a manison (thats not me), I neeed to clean it ..lol I am asking for alittle help, a hero, somebody just to take some weight off my shoulders. I am a mother before student, I am a mother before I am Kristin. I wont stop writing, I wont stop blogging to find someone to help me. I need help and I hate admitting that heck any mother doesnt want to admitshe cant take care of one of her children. I care for him in every other way. I am in the hospital wit hthe first sign of terrible breathing. I am begging you can you please just think about it. You would be saving my sons life and you would help me breath easy knowing my baby boy can breath and the weight is off my shoulders of knowing we are all safe. Please thank you for listening to my story. Your friend and fan Kristin

  13. Kamini Singh says:

    Dear Dr Phil,
    Please help Kristen!
    Please please please.
    Kristen, I am a single mum too. It is bloody hard.
    Dear Dr Phil, again, please, please please help Kristen-my heart will remain broken otherwise, (no pressure or anything).
    Kristen: Hang On!!!! Remember, there is a God who loves you and all of your children, and, the lowest ebb is the turn of the tide.
    xoxo
    PS Erica, I loved the link that you left. What a bright young lassie you are.

  14. JANE says:

    HELP!!!!!!!

  15. Katie says:

    I know you’ve covered many times the warning signs that your child is being bullied and how to know if your child is a bully, but are there any characteristics that make some people more prone to being bullied?

  16. Michelle Fuhr says:

    This is a huge issue for me. It brought back a lot of memories. My twin sister and I moved to Spain to attend a Department of Defense school, as our stepdad was in the Air Force. The school started with 8th grade and went through senior year. There were more than 4000 children in this school. There was little to no supervision and there were a lot of gangs. We as white children were the minority and there was one gang of black girls who targeted me as the person you had to beat up to get in their gang. My parents were already neglectful and abusive to us and had no interest in helping me out. A fight would ensue nearly every day and at least 100 kids would gather to watch as I (95lbs soaking wet even to this day) was punched, kicked, thrown down stairwells, harrassed, humiliated. One time they actually broke into my locker and took all my gym clothes out and drew my panties up the school’s flagpole. I had horrible acne and on one occassion one of the biggest ones (over 6′tall basketball player) actually walked up to me in the middle of the cafeteria and popped a zit on my face. The administration was so fearful i believe that maybe why they never took action. It was like a different world there. It was awful, horrific, nightmarish. Every day was just pure hell. After a while I started to fight back. I broke three initiates’ noses before they stopped attacking me. They formed the all-too-familiar circle of rows and rows of bodies near where all the busses were parked. All busses had drivers who just sat there. Finally a senior who rode my bus (I’ll never forget his name.. Les) yanked me out of the circle and said that’s enough you’re going home and I never ever forgot him. I don’t know how i survived that to be honest. Maybe it was because I was abused physically at home and I didn’t know any better I just know it was one of the most if not the lowest point in my life and is burned indelibly onto my brain. I always look for the silver lining and I am the kind of person who ALWAYS stands up against wrongs and injustice. It is never easy but I was that person. I actually literally thought I was invisible at times. I am 40 years old and just writing this and watching that show about those poor children just makes the tears flow and flow. Please if you see this kids, adults, school officials please stop this. It has lifelong if not deadly consequences.

  17. Kristin says:

    Thank you So much Kamini Singh! I need help for myself and my children. My sister was awesome to open her home to us but Its hurting my boy. The hardest thing in life was to walk away from that life (if you want to call it that). I have tried to get DrPhils help over and over. I just hope he sees this. Its a plea for help. Ill keep posting to see if he will help. Thanks again.

  18. Michelle Fuhr says:

    What I failed to mention in this post, as I am incredibly emotional about this still, is that I was an honor student and my grades started to plummet. To the poster who asked who may be targeted as victims, well in my case I was very small, quiet, new, a loner who didn’t have anyone batting for me. I had come there already feeling like an outsider because of my dysfunctional family. I was a non-violent nerdy type I guess and they saw me as an easy target. I think bullies are no different in their thinking than any other criminal who preys on victims. They look for people they think they can overwhelm and overpower easily. As Dr. Phil said they’re cowards. When I read Dr. Phil’s comments about what parents said.. I came home bloodied and bruised almost every day and this is what my parentstold their little girl: “Fight your own battles.” After literally months of torment, when I broke those girls’ noses it was by then pure survival. It is almost funny to think about because each time I closed my eyes, waited for them to hit me first and when they did my fist would just pop out and break their nose. I can’t tell you how i did that, but I was never proud of it. I actually became good friends with one of the girls whose nose I broke. She was in my Spanish class and her name was Ingrid. But there were still people slapping me on the back and complementing my skills. I just shook my head. The whole thing was so… preventable. It was just unbelievable how out of hand things got. I think DoD schools are mostly ignored when it comes to this kind of thing. Just as they accept domestic violence as just a part of enlisted life they accepted it in the schools too. I haven’t been back since but perhaps this is an issue that should be explored more deeply.

  19. Alan Haskey says:

    Dr. Phil,

    Thankyou for taking a stand on bullying – no one should have to be subjected to this type of treatment, regardless of religious beliefs, nationality etc.

    I would like to make one point – as a Canadian, and as frequent visitor to the US, and partner to a US citizen, I feel that if alot of these people want to live in our country and can’t seem to understand why they are not treated properly. Perhaps, if they were to assimilate with us a little more (like dress in North American styles), then perhaps, those bad Canadians and Americans that are doing this bullying would not be as tempted to carry on in this fashion.

    These are our countries (US and Canada), and we openly welcome people from other countries and religious beliefs, but come-on – get with the program – they can still have your religion, and your own beliefs, but DON”T ram it down our throats.

    We have moved too far – its time that we as Americans / Canadians take a stand. “In God we Trust” and God Keep our land Glorious and Free”.

  20. Phyllis Prodan says:

    Dear Dr. Phil,
    I watched the last portion of the bullying issues with the quads. As you were leaving that group you asked the audience a question about bullying. If you are a witness to a bullying situation, are you participating. The answer to that question is certainly. The Olweus Bullying Prevention Program teaches that the witness is considered a bystander. This individual makes up the group in a U shape with the victim being in the center. Bullying can be very subtle or overt. I have seen the range while working within the school setting. The bully will target an individual and make life a living hell. My problem with the portion I saw was the body language from the school administrators. The Eddy Haskle syndrome often appears and then the issues becomes complicated by the twist of the bully.
    Bullying is never going to go away until we actually deal with differences and acceptance in a consistent manner. Schools are already dealing with many issues that should not be in their realm. Bullying needs to be addressed from K – 12. There are many good programs designed to be implemented into school systems. Administrators must learn that bullying is a serious issue at any age.

  21. Cindie Vertefeuille says:

    Bullying has been going on as long as I have been alive.
    When I was a young person, there were three people that I will never forget: Linda B., Linda W., and Valerie K. Each one of these young ladies were tormented by their classmates.

    While watching the Dr. Phil Show today, you said that when one stands by and doesn’t do anything, it is as bad as bullying. I fully agree and will tell you about one of these girls and my experience:

    My “friends” would circle around Linda and call her names and make fun of her and even throw things at her. She would try to get out of the ‘cage’ of mockers that surrounded her by kicking and crying and yelling. But they wouldn’t let up until either the bell rang or the leader of the pack dismissed them.

    Where were the teachers? This was in the 60’s, so they were somewhere nearby. Were they watching it happen and ignoring it?

    Where was I? Like Saul, at the stoning of Steven, I held their coats and watched, trying not to be identified with the mockers, but wanting them to think I was as cool as I thought THEY were.

    This haunted me for many, many years and I sincerely prayed that someday I could find these three young women and beg their forgiveness. I figured that with their torture, they probably lived a hard life, but had absolutely no way of knowing whatever happened… until one day, I found Linda on facebook. I asked her if she was the one and if so, I would like to write her a letter.

    She was the one and was very surprised and grateful that anyone remembered her. I wrote her a sincere letter of apology and she graciously forgave me. We are friends on facebook and it looks like her life has been somewhat like I imagined. She seems very lonely.

    I have told my children this story over the years, because I don’t want them to live in regret. I am in my 50’s and still look for the other two. Mine was a sin of omission. I didn’t ever yell at her and call her names and never stood in the circle of torture….but I did not stand up for her and the wrongdoing that took place – and for that I am very ashamed.

    …and I believe I am EVERY bit as guilty as those doing the bullying. I am thankful for the forgiveness of Linda W.

  22. Tim Smith says:

    Thanks for keeping the subject of bullying in the media. I would like to see you do a show about schools that bully the students. Schools often encourage and even join in the bullying. My child’s ex-school is a good example. When we asked the school to investigate a teacher for abuse and bullying, we became the bullied. Schools act like they care and want parental involvement. This is a lie. They want you involved until you disagree or accuse one of their own of bullying and abuse. Our daughter tells us her male teacher pushed her head in the bathroom floor. She has a goose egg on her forehead. We ask the principal to investigate. A few days later protective services is at our house alleging I abused my daughter. This is pathetic to say the least. After researching this tactic of schools to stop parental advocacy, I realized that I was not alone. It appears that this is the newest trend school districts use to stop parents from helping their kids. Granted students bully other students. However, many school districts bully students. This area should be addressed also. Just ask parents of special needs students and you will see that this occurs all the time.

  23. danielle K says:

    I never write on sites like this but i felt compelled to express to someone what just happened to my child. I have a child in middle school who is the quarterback and head basketball player at school. He decided to concentrate on just basketball and not play football next year. He is now being BULLIED by two teachers/coaches. this morning they called him selfish and a waste of time. That he was causing other kids not to try out for football for if he is not playing his friends are not. He went to bathroom and sent me a text that he was upset. I call the school and they took his phone away from him for its against the rules to text he sent it on school ground. I understand the rule but because I attempted to take up for my son it caused him to lose his phone for three days what about the teachers who called him names what are they losing?? Is it me or is something wrong with this picture.

  24. Ian Gradwell says:

    Is it bullying when you are ignored or when you are just approached by a group that’s intimidating. Or when a group chases you when you run from a group or when a group of people do graffitti etc.?

  25. Please do not publish this. I am just curious about why you would not post the comment I submitted earlier.

  26. Alexandra says:

    Dear Dr. Phil!

    Your comments about bullying has really touched me. I, myself was bullied throu out almost four years of school and no one of the teachers culd do anything about it. We never found the sorce. It started in school but somewhere in the middle of all things it’s even got online.
    There was times when I even though it was the truth, what they said. I was all those things they called me.
    Now I have a son of my own, and I’m terrified he is going to be bullied when he starts school. (he is now 8 mounth old) Many people I’ve spoke to has told me I should let my feelings go, but I don’t whant my son to feel what I felt.
    Am I to worried or should I listen to my fellings?
    I might misspell some of the words in my letter but I hope you still can understand what I have to say.

  27. wendy says:

    i am scared for my 12 year olds life ,she is getting bully at school she use to love school but now she crys before she leaves the house,one of the girls mum that bullys her tryed to hit her with the car in the school car park, no one from the school has rung me yet and still waiting 4 a phone call,this has been 3 weeks ago,so i am trying still to talk to the school to this day.i toke my 6 year old and my 12 year old to the park with freinds and there little children 2 years old and 5 year olds ,they seen my girl there well there where about 20 kids standing there just starring at us these kids where freinds of the school bullys so we had to leave for our safety.now i sit with my 12 year old in the mornings until the bell goes which makes my 6 year old late 4 her school and pick my 12 year old up which makes me late 4 my 6 year for pick up in the afternoon.where is the justice in this and i have to sit back and wait 4 the school to ring me.there should be a school 4 bullys and leave the kids that want to learn to learn and not to be scared to go to school,my 12 year old does not sleep good at night or eat much she is scared about the next day.cheers wendy

  28. sheila says:

    I am a parent in Montana and have been faced with this war on BULLYING in my daughters elementary school for 3 years and i am taking a stand for my daughter and all the other students in the state of Montana. I have work with her school and their policy doesn’t work. I have been to the office of the Superintendent and ask for some accountability and he says he agrees there needs to be some accountability. He informs me the State Legislators took every penny out of a AT-RISK FUNDS for our students. How that applys to the BULLYING issue is beyond me. I then wrote to the State Capital Building in Helena, Montana and ask for their accountability and the (LEG) Legislative Attorney inform me that i can file section 45-5-221, MCA and take the student to a civil court. I still hear the lack of any City or State Office putting the children of Montana above them. I am now sending emails to the House & State Senate for accountabilty, but no reply. I am going to keep crawling to every step/door for a STATE LAW (bullying). I am getting as much people as i can to hear and assist me on putting our childrens education & civil rights to a safe education above them. Any suggestions, please help me. Thank you Sheila

  29. Anne Marie says:

    You go, Dr Phil.

    I am concerned about when these kids get to work and harass work mates, bully their friends and create hell for their intimates as adults. It really has to be dealt with early and in a way that rehabilitates the bully to a better way of thinking and being. I believe everyone deserves to live their best life. Let’s put some feet on different paths… both bullies and victims.

    I was bullied as a child and could have done with Jay’s book. I know I did better as an adult and mother, when my daughter was bullied at 8 years old. School administrators finally got the bully to stop when I threatened to sit in the principals office EVERY TIME she was bullied. Worked a treat (and quite funny in hindsight!) I cleared my work schedule and cheerfully PROMISED that I would be on his doorstep looking for answers everytime she was bullied. He looked terrified when he said “I dont have time for that!”. It stopped. My daughter is now a resilient 13 year old with the self confidence and good sense to step in when she sees others attacked. And the strategy she uses to take the wind out of a bully’s sails…. humour.

    Thank you for your family’s work in this area. Keep up the good work.

  30. Dear Dr. Phil,
    Would you please join me in an effort to put some kind of control on cybersecurity, (i.e., The Blacklist Club), they have 10, 11, 12 year old children viewing their Forum Threads with profanity all over them. They do not have any rules against profanity, nor do they have any age limitations. They are run by a Corporation name of; “BIG EVIL CORP.” info@bigevil.com, right there in Sherman Oaks, Ca. I’ve politely emailed the President of their corp. “Skylar Logan” without a response. I’m aware of dozens of children on their forum unsupervised, and I created a thread in their forum asking what the kids thought about the profanity; and they agreed, it should stop. Our children are a target of these Corporations to buy music, (i.e., Evan Taubenfelds The Blacklist Club) to be out on iTunes, May 18, 2010. Your support in this effort would be greatly appreciated, and I’m sure the parents would be glad to be informed also.
    Warmest Regards; David N. Starkey

  31. Marie says:

    You really want to change things with bulling? It starts with the teachers, the guidance counselors, and the principals. They all need to listen to the parents of the victims, they need to believe the child who is a victim, and they have to look beyond the fact that the bullies are the kids in the class room who seem like the nicest. My 3 children are all in college now, still suffering with self esteem issues. While they were in elementary school, middle school and high school, all I ever heard from those people was “what are you going to do when they get to middle school/high school/college” “will you be able to protect them than? they have to learn how to deal with this on their own”. Well, guess what, if no one teaches them how to, they will never learn. So, why was I not able to help my kids with bulling, because I don’t know how to deal with them either, I was bullied by their teachers, their guidance counselors and their principals. I was bullied as a child and it continues into my adult life and I will be 50 soon. Now, my kids will carry this with them and will not know how to stop the bulling for their kids. I can only believe that, unless you teach your kids how to mean, and be to a bully, they will have no real future, please, don’t let this happen.
    How about a program for young adults? College is harsh!

  32. Luke says:

    I would like to thank you and aploud you for you stants at the major epidemic of bullying, especially school and teen bullying. I especially liked, enjoyed, and thought that you message on Ryan Seacrest show was top nonch for the problem we have as a natation. You did a excellent job of targeting the right population which this problem arises in the most. (teens and kids) You had several good and different messages for everybody to think and act apon. Now you need to talk to teachers parents directly. You always do good.

  33. Laura says:

    Thank You, Thank You. Thank You.
    I cannot express my feelings adequately regarding this topic.
    My recently turned 12, gifted and talented, previously strait A son, has been the victim of a bully all year long and we are just finding out. I broke our heart to find out it has been his teacher all along.
    Since the beginning of the school year, our once happy child who loved school, loved learning, loved playing sports, had an amazing sense of humor, bagan making C’s.
    In talking with him, he could not tell us anything that was going on with him, his feelings, anything going on at school. Conferences with his teacher team saw the same things. We were distraught because he was depressed and no longer had the desire to engage.
    Long story short, I had a parent tell me something that the teacher had done to my son in the form of verbal bullying in front of the class. Her son had told her. My son never came to me about it. I spoke with that teacher about the incident and she never said she was sorry for what had happened, only that she was sorry my son was hurt or offended. That was a HUGE red flag for me. Since then, I have learned of several more instances of her bullying, humiliating, yelling and screaming. And it is not just at my child.
    I have been to the Principal and AP about the 1st incident I mentioned and was just there again Monday about this latest. My son still will not come “tattle” when things happen. He would rather “block it out” and forget about it. All the while, internalizing it.
    I hope our meeting this week with the teacher, the AP and my husband and I will yeild some result. She needs to know this is wrong. One part of me wants to just cry and the other side wants to Dr. Phil her.

  34. Susan says:

    Since this topic is about bullies, I felt I should include my comments on today’s “Bullying Moms” program here. I was horrified to see what kind of abuse these moms Nikkie and Ivonna were inflicting on their children. When I hear about these horror stories of parents abusing their children, it always raises a single question for me: did these abusive mothers (or fathers, as it sometimes happens is the case) WANT to have children, or were they PRESSURED into having them because they were told by family/friends/community that they’re “supposed to” have them? No one ever seems to ask them THAT question, and I have to wonder why.

    During the program, I heard Nikkie say something to the effect that maybe she should have taken her friends’ advice and given up her daughter Lexi for adoption. That gave me the impression (although I could be mistaken on this) that either the pregnancy was an unwanted one or that Nikkie didn’t want to raise her child after she and Lexi’s father split up. Either way, she doesn’t act like a woman who wanted motherhood; just the OPPOSITE. I hope she can get help for her anger and rage issues, and until she does, she shouldn’t be anywhere near her child right now. Maybe not ever, if she can’t get her anger under control.

  35. Aiko Kristen De La Fuente says:

    i am 24 years old. Is been along time senice I been in school or at a job. But till this day I still kind of feel bulling but I learnd how to stand my grand and take charge.. When I was in high school I had been bully in jr high too but i had been beating up and mean phone calls and named calling and nasty notes in school. I don’t like bullies. I don’t like mean people. I use to help my youngest sister from been bully because she was over wight and chunky so I had stood up for. Coming fro someone that was been bully it hurt’s alot and it makes you feel like yo are all alone and so worhtless.You may think that oh my words aren’t hurting you or anything else but it does. Poeple my think that oh they are bad and they can rule the world but what bout the persin you make fun of? Or how would you feel if you were been bully would you like it?? Or someone was talking talking bout your family or whatever how would you feel?? Some bullies need to think bout this. Yeah sticks and stones may brake your bones but words can nver hurt.. But they do. Lot.

  36. Valerie S. Kelley says:

    Dr. Phil,
    My children are grown, 31 F, 30 M, 25 F. I bullied them, not to the degree as the women on the show but I yelled, threw things, slapped. and spanked, mostly my son. Fortunatly I also did some quality things, beach, parks, games, crafts, reading. etc and I hugged them and told them I loved them often..However, my son got the brunt of my triades. He turned to drugs when his father and I were going through a nasty custody battle and divorce. He is now serving life in prison for robbing a convience store, He used a sm pocket knife and recieved $16.00. No one was hurt. He was sentenced under a mandatory sentencing guideline, Prison Reoffender Act. This was his second crime. In the state of Fl if you committ a felony within 3 yrs of serving time in prison they can give you life. This is life and a day. No parole or gain time.
    Everyone keeps telling me that he is a grown man and that I am not responsible for his actions. Yes, under the influence of many drugs he committed this crime. But why did he turn to drugs at such a young age? Who is really responsible? His father and I are…I hurt him in so many ways..Physical, emotional, verbal. I took my children’s childhood away from them. The one person, their mother, that they should have been able to trust let them down, over and over again..Their father was a workaholic and not present. At times he was physically abusive to me and my son. He has since disowned him. He says that to him he is dead. My son has a son whom he has never seen. He recently got upset with my oldest daughter and has now disowned her…
    My childhood was not so good, I suffered verbal, emotional, physical and sexual abuse. At age 12 I was raped. That being said…it is no excuse..I swore that I would not be like my mother and in someways I wasn’t but in many ways I was and still am..
    I have done many things to change, many years of therapy, groups, treatments, etc. My children are the most important thing in my life. They are wonderful human beings despite me. My question to you is how do I make this up to them, how do I get my son’s life back. How do I ever forgive and not blame myself? When I am to BLAME. This legacy has to stop but how? How do I redo their childhood? If I could I would…
    I have many questions and have contemplated them for many years. The only answer that I keep coming up with, is to be the best me that I can today. To be the love. Living in the past ,full of regrets, only brings the past to the present. To love, honor, and respect them for who they are today is the only way that I can change the past. To show them that I love, honor and respect myself enough today to be a happy, healthy, whole and complete person is the answer that I keep getting. Is this the legacy that I can leave them with today?

  37. Valerie S. Kelley says:

    Thank you.

  38. Gayle says:

    Well this all was a flashback to my childhood and youth, nothing new, been thru it all, all the screaming. Now in my 50’s, have a love-hate relationship with my mom who never could understand why I was more active than a sister, she explained later in life to me, sort of. Went thru the screaming almost daily, dad was at work, never knew half the stuff going on, told him twice, he tried to solve it, I got it more and screamed at always in the morning, cried like anything, tore out of the house to jr high, stayed at the library thru university/college, studied hard, missed Sun nite dinners cuz I could stand her. Wanted to commit suicide or kill her at 13, got therapy later on in life, didn’t help too much. Stayed out of her way, limited conversation, tried to get her approval constantly, why, I don’t know, had to, had to please her all the time or she’d yell, still controls me, gets furious, raises her voice, hit me til 26 I guess, sure why not, her mom was evil to her, me, I suffered continuously, hardly could study, did well in school later on and in career ok but never got the respect at work; strived to teach and explain things, talked about parenting, she never could admit she was wrong, sort of did to a girlfriend, I went thru hell a lot, had nightmares, still not married, hate her often, she calls so many times a day, is very lonely, low self esteem; someone always had to be blamed, she was angry daily, I ran to the washroom when she came home, now she feels guilty, gives me materialism, still won’t talk about it, gets mad only by raising her voice now and threatening me with things I know she won’t carry out, blames me still, tells me off, gives excuses, was told she was unwanted, what else? Hmmm what did she do physically? a lot – hit me galore but rarely on the face, screamed screamed… til I probably cried myself to sleep for years, camp was my escape, got therapy, she’d never attend though..nothing more can be done. I try to move on. I work hard and try to stay away from her but now she’s needy and calls 18 times/day and needs me to explain everything slower, and brags to the world that thank god for me cuz she’s living for me. Bittersweet freedom right? OMG. What a life. wish she wasn’t a big part of my life and I was free, so I choose to live this life where she hasn’t broken ties, and me, well if I talk back I recall the hitting constantly and the yelling, the mommie dearest, and yes the biggest blame was cuz I wasn’t as neat as she was with folding clothes or laundry, or cleaning – bad, bad.. and I’m right handed and she’s not so I did everything wrong. Now I suffer with poor health from anxiety, a bit of depression, feeling sorry for myself, overweight, and I struggle to make a living, and feel I will just take one day at a time and get thru it, get thru the weekends with her, count the hours that I need to get thru before I have to attend things with her. And I suck up to her with presents so she doesn’t get mad at me so much, she becomes happy for an hour or two, and that’s good and the next day, well, I never know what mood she’s in. but..well it’s not her fault she is this way, it’s her way and that’s all there is too it. Ya right! WRONG.

  39. Cherie Gray says:

    Dear Dr. Phil, Watching your lovely family present your beautiful grand daughter to the world. She is perfect. Oh boy Dr. Phil, now you are going to be an even BIGGER pussycat!! Thanks for sharing Avery with all of us.

  40. Katie says:

    I have been getting cyber bullied for months…I am an adult and the person doing so is also an adult…It’s sad that a 38 year old man has nothing better to do but harass me on a constant basis…I have had to change my phone number and use the highest security measures on facebook to keep myself safe…Even sadder the person doing the bullying is my soon to be x-husband’s cousin…He had posted pictures of me that he had photoshopped online and even made a youtube channel about me…He would request all my friends to be his friends so he could post these things and tag them all in it…That’s not including the phone calls and text messages I was getting…I had gone to the police and they wouldn’t do anything about it…I even tried to get an order for protection and the judge wouldn’t sign it because they claimed that it wasn’t enough…What is enough??? I have no faith in the legal system because they pretty much told this guy that what he is doing is ok!!! It’s not ok!!! I have all the proof in the world!!! One friend of mine had to put a restraining order against this guy because he was doing the same to her!!! I don’t have the money to go around putting restraining orders on people!!! It costs $320!!! I’m lucky to have a job right now and I don’t work to put money on that! Why isn’t there a law against this? Why do people continue to get away with cyber harassment? You shouldn’t have to pay money to keep yourself safe!!!

  41. roslind says:

    My 5 year old grandson was a victim of both physical and emotional abuse on the school bus in jackson south carolina, he had bruises and scrapes from these older boys. The bus driver laughed during his ordeal instead of stopping the bus and pulling these kids off of this little boy. In my opinion both the school and transportation dept. have handled this situation poorly. The only ones who were quick to take action over my grandsons ordeal were his brother and cousin who pulled the bullies off of this little boy.The adults who are suppose to protect this child have let him down and left this little boy confused, in his words “big people laughed, while I cried” it’s time we quit sitting back while our children and grandchildren have to be afraid to go to school.

  42. Jackie B says:

    Did you see in the NEWS today 5-25-2010- I believe PA or NJ. 4 boys BULLIED a 14 year old into letting them tatoo his butt with an offensive illistrations!!!!
    WE HAVE LAWS AGAINST HOSTILE WORK ENVIRONMENTS!!!!! to protect us. WHY…..cant we have LAWS againt HOSTILE SCHOOL ENVIROMENTS??????
    I am 48 years old and STILL live today with the bullying I recieved as a child for having a jewish last name.
    CHECK OUT…one of the mothers responses, unbealivable!!!!!

  43. Debbie Kinney says:

    I am so thankful that Dr. Phil has brought this to everyone’s attention. I am a 47 year old mother of 4 children (3 daughters-22, 19, & 15 years old and 1 son -12 years old). My 15 year old daughter has been bullied for the last 3 years. She is very bright and her PSSA scores are off the chart. She has been bullied so severely that she misses at least 30 days of the school year which caused her to repeat the 7th grade twice and now the school has told me she is required to go to summer school just to make it into the 9th grade. She has been setup by these girls and beaten and picked on everyday. She is stalked in the hallways and at lunch. The first two years the school tried to make me believe it was my daughter and her over active imagination. They told me she was too dramatic. She has become very withdrawn. An incident occured a few months ago where one of these girls jumped her and my daughter got the best of them. My daughter was suspended for fighting and kicked off of the track team. She was only defending herself, but we were told zero tolerance and rules are rules. These girls were so upset that Rachel defended herserlf and made a fool of the bully that they vowed to get her. She was threatened everyday in school, kicked, spit on, called names, and even threatened me (her mother) when I picked her up after school. Whenever I would complain to the school officials, it was like I was an over protective and over reacting mom. A more recent incident the bully told my daughter she would get her. My daughter informed the principal who said he met with the girl and felt confident she would do no harm to my daughter. The very next day this bully (with many accomplices) pulled my daughter into the girls gym where there was no camera and beat her relentlessly for about 5 minutes when a teacher finally heard the commotion and made them stop. My daughter had multiple scratches and contusions all over her, especially her head. These bully girls were cheering on the bully who was attacking my daughter. When it seemed that the school didn’t do enough to protect my daughter, I called the police. The police were very proactive about this on-going situation and I pressed charges against this bully. She was charged with simple assuaul, harassment, and terroristic threats. My daughter now doesn’t want to attend school any longer for fear of being attacked. She still gets threatened everyday and these girls try to lure her into their friendship so they can set her up to beat her. I want to Cyber School her from our home in order to protect her, but my husband is giving me a hard time and thinks my daughter is running from her problems. It’s causing a major problem in our 27 year marriage because he feels she needs to face her problems and I am pacifying her. I hope someone has some answers for me – Am I being paranoid because of the abuse she has taken over the past 3 years? or am I protecting my child they way I should. Any advice would be great. I sometimes feel men just don’t understand what these young girls go through. My daughter tells me everyday she hates her life and sometimes wishes she had never been born. Dr. Phil really opened my eyes to these teens and their hopelessness from the bullies when he air his show on this subject. If anyone has any advice, please share. I am very willing to listen. Thank you.

  44. Jean Redder says:

    I work with parenting/pregnant teenage girls that live in a residential program with their infants and children. I handle bullying by telling the girls that we, as a group of women, living under one roof, are in a signifgicant relationship (family).
    I define abuse in the house as domestic violence. If mediation with staff doesn’t result in a desired outcome, (peace) then the program makes a referral to a DV specialist. This usually leads to anger management classes or dv groups.
    We have a golden rule at our program and we enforce it.
    “You are responsible for the effects that your words and behaviors have on others”

  45. Jeanine says:

    I am glad and thankful that Dr. Phil is bringing this to everybody’s attention . I was a victim of bullying when I was a freshman in high school-back then, they didn’t do much or anything to help me. There was an overgrown senior that was in my brother’s graduating class at the time and my brother was about his size. The point is, I didn’t do a thing to provoke this person. He had an art class with me at school and his best friend was in it with him. The art teacher was a woman who wasn’t much of a disciplinarian. Her idea of discipline was saying to him, “Now, now…let’s stop that talk” or something like that. She didn’t take it serious enough. Not only would this guy threaten to kill me outside of class in the hallways but he actually had the nerve to say it to me in front of others in the art class classroom.
    I kept talking to the art teacher about it; and I told my brother about it and neither would listen to me or take me seriously. I even went to my father , who was a school administrator here and he talked to my brother about it and expected him to take care of the problem.
    I had even gone to the guidance counselor and the principal of my school and they wouldnt take me seriously either. But after a long time, one day it finally stopped and I don’t know who could take the credit for stopping it but I’m thankful. The sad thing is though, that my brother and I haven’t ever been close and it hasn’t been for my lack of trying to be close to him. He is just a plain, hateful human being.
    But when I got bullied, I was scared all the time and I was really afraid that this guy was going to kill me.
    I know back then there weren’t computers like there are now and that cyber bullying is prevalent and just as scary. My niece was bullied when she was in high school a few years ago by some boy in her child development class. She and my twin sister had to endure a lot of grief over it. My sister had the same trouble getting something about it done through this school system here. But finally it stopped.
    But thanks to what my niece went through(partially), she has a bipolar depression disorder now and has to be on medications for it. And thanks to what I went through in my earlier life, I have to be on anxiety medication now.
    I hope that Dr Phil’s testimony in Washington today can help get something done about this prevalent and horrifying problem in our society today.

    Sincerely,

    Jeanine T.

  46. Shelly says:

    Thank you!! Finally someone is speaking out publicly about this issue. Speaking as a recent high school graduate, I hate the fact that the bullying issue is ignored and passed off as a “part of growing up”. I was bullied all through out middle school. I couldn’t go a day where I wasn’t told how ugly I was or how my clothes were too cheap and frumpy. Rumours were also spread about me and they continued on through high school, since many of the people who started them went to the same school. Even someone who claimed to be my “best friend” joined in with them and taunted and teased just as much. It wouldn’t have been so bad except for the fact that the TEACHERS encouraged it. The bullies were their favorites, the “little angels” that everyone was supposed to aspire to be. They even joked once that these favorites were the “plastics” but thats all they ever said. Even when I got to High school it didn’t get better. The teachers still absolutely loved the bullies, and since it was a small town, favoritism ran rampant. The bullies were safe as the favorites and the teachers often said that the bullies were too “cute” and “sweet” to do such things. Rumours went through the rumour mill about me and several of the other outcasts. Even on the bus outcasts couldn’t escape the bullying because several middle school girl thought that they were “grown up enough” to threaten, taunt and tease anyone they wished. No one was spared from this, they went after elementry schoolers and high schoolers(even myself). No one did anything, until finally I said something to a school administrator who actually did something (they were put off the bus for a day, it wasn’t much but it was a start). But these girls continued bullying and complained that their punishment had been for nothing, that they had done nothing wrong. I hope that someday in the future there is some sort of anti-bullying law because it is wrong for other kids to bully others just because of some percieved difference. The results can be deadly, but no one seems to realize the impact until someone dies as a result and then, its too late.

  47. Gull-Britt S. Barron says:

    I watched your show about bullies and it hit me straight on. My 10 year-old son was the sweetest most compassionate and spiritual boy and that was not accepted by his “friends”. He was beaten and kicked in his head until he lost consciousness for sticking up for a little girl that was teased for her weight. This is only one of the many incidents that happen to him. One day he had enough and the last thing he said before he went out the door was:”I don’t have any friends”. We later found him hanged in the playhouse above the garage. I lost my only son because I have always taught my children to be nice. My faith has helped me through this and I know that he is in a better place. My 2 girls are still the helpful and compassionate people they were taught to be. I am still proud of them for being the persons they are and that I believe that my son still is. Thank you for all you do to help so many troubled people. I love you for all you do. G. Barron

  48. Maureen says:

    I have been checking out your website for a while, Dr. Phil. In fact we actually met. You were doing a book signing at a Border’s on Michigan Avenue in Chicago, which I didn’t stay for. It was several years ago. I did my best Chris Farley when he did his Chris Farley show interviewing Paul Mc Cartney. I pointed to you and said, “You’re Awesome!”

    Thank you for being a part of exposing bullying and all means of relationship violence. I checked out one of your archive shows concerning a nineteen year old girl named Tiffany. She was the one who bullied people because she thought it was funny.

    No it’s not. I was bullied by jerks like her. I’m 53, and I still feel the pain from the bullying I got from my teens. I had neighbors in this subdivision I lived in, and they hated me. It hurts when your parents think you’re provoking them and bringing it on yourself. It’s even worse when people watch. The bully is putting on a show for the bystanders from tickets the victim was forced to pay for.

    I found myself wondering why Tiffany thought it was funny. How can anyone think bullying another person is funny? From the point of view of the victim, it’s anything but funny. The victim feels guilt, like they deserved it. Does any bully ever consider that idea, that their victim doesn’t like being the butt of the bully’s joke?

    When Bette Midler was a kid there was this boy in her orchestra class. I’ll call him Jimmy. He was half Mexican and Chinese, and Jimmy was a small kid. Because he limped and had a huge overbite, other kids were made Jimmy the butt of every cruelty and prank they could think of. Essentially he was being treated like “The Punch line”. Jimmy was talented as a string bass player, and Bette Midler said Jimmy was the best string bass player their school ever had.

    This other boy stuffed Jimmy in his string bass case, and when the teacher was wondering where Jimmy was, the boy opened the case and Jimmy was there. Everybody laughed. So did Jimmy, but not in an amused way.

    Jimmy didn’t show up at school for a few days, and he didn’t come home. His parents were frantic, and begged the school for help. The school ignored them. Jimmy was found along a dirt road. He was found hanging from a tree, and under the tree was a little note. It said, “I’m tired of being the punch line.”

    I myself wound up with an entire school bus chanting, “Weirdo,Weirdo,Weirdo,Weirdo,” over and over one evening going home. It was embarrassing, and it was for me. Some boy sitting next to me asked me, “Do you use your head, or do you have one?”, and he laughed.

    Some boy landed a mouth full of saliva in my face. Someone else landed a cricket. Later that year, the same boy who spat on me screamed at me, “NOBODY LIKES YOU!” My parents’ friends came over that evening and I told them that nobody liked me. The next morning, my mother was furious. She was angry I embarrassed her. She screamed at me, “NO WONDER NOBODY LIKES YOU! YOU’RE THIS AND THAT AND THIS AND THAT AND THIS AND THAT!”

    My father kept calling me stupid, and had no patience toward me at all. I am glad all this bullying on all sides is being exposed for what it is in all its cruelty and violence.

    Where is being treated like nothing funny?

  49. Maureen says:

    Hey, Shelly. You are bam right on about the fact that teachers actually encourage bullying whether they know or care. I had a 4th grade teacher who did a class thing where we had to pass our math papers to another student, and the other student would grade it. If we forgot to put our names on the papers, they were permitted to put their own name on it, even if the student knew who they got the paper from.

    I got my math paper back from a girl who wrote “Freida Moose”. Then I put my first name on it, and she gave it back to me as “Maureen Moose.

    There was this boy who decided to launch a hate campaign against me in fifth grade. Maybe he was jealous, maybe he thought this was a way to get noticed and make some friends, I don’t know. But his goal was to make sure everyone knew I was a Weirdo, and the goal included getting everyone to dislike me for it. He got an entire bus to chant out, “Weirdo, Weirdo, Weirdo, Weirdo,”. He even got our teacher to call me that and punish me.

    My sister two years younger had a classmate who was heavy set. The other third grade teacher in our school came in and remarked to the entire class this boy was fat. It was awful.

  50. Ellen F-B says:

    Look, I just want to say, yes, Bullying is a huge problem in our community today, not just in the schoolroom, these days kids go home, get on the computer or phone devices and just get bullied from the saftey of their own home. With all the passwords and hidden bypass systems the kids know of to access the web makes it very very hard for parents to monitor!!

    I’ve been witness to bullying time and time again both online and in the real world, but the nastiest, is always online. its a lot easier to be anonymous and descreet but still has the ability to impact thousands of people. Oftentimes when people try to stick up for the person being insulted or bullied they will say; “Oh GROW UP its the web, it can’t hurt you” It is SO UNTRUE!!!! IT IS SO INCONSIDERATE how people think its the web so they can get away with it and no one will get hurt. I guess when bullying isn’t face to face, it is easier for people to not deal with the consequences, and believe that its all a joke.

    Bullying has been in the media for some time now!!! and its been talked about in schools for some time now!!! Everyone KNOWS its wrong and EVERYONE knows its bad and how it will affect kids but the problem IS HOW do schools regulate behaviour that is going on OUTSIDE classrooms and OUTSIDE the school grounds??

    its not as easy as just saying to parents “talk to your kids about it and play happy supportive families” or telling teachers to “suspend the bullies”. it really doesn’t work like that.

    I have been subject to bullying a lot when I was 11, i was born disfigured (goldhenhars-syndrome) but I was a perfectly capable human being and went to a normal mainstream school. I was spat on, followed everywhere, taunted, pushed and shoved around, called names, was told I was disgusting, the whole school sort of ganged up on me because I was in year 6/7 all the kids from reception – grade 5 looked up to the “big ” kids so they would imitate the older kids and would scream EEEEEEEEEEEEEEEEWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWWW if they ever touched me, to them it was all a big joke. Their “reward” was to be accepted by their peers. At the time I had no support network to turn to, I tried the school, but of course it was my word against the kids. i tried home, but my family had just fallen apart with an ugly divorce and my mother severely depressed and drinking, she couldn’t function in the slightest, there was no way i could talk to her. My dad had nothing to do with us, my brother didn’t go to the same school, he was older and already in high school. My twin SISTER though… she had to seek love, and the only way she could do this was to join in with the other kids and bully me just like they did so she could be accepted… I guess her way of justifying her bullying was to say how much she hated me, and from there on out, she has always hated me, and is to this day, physically violent towards me (i’m nineteen years old). When I was 11 I tried to commit suicide, and again when I was 15, when I was 16 my cousin committed suicide and it affected me in a big way, and i guess it was my wake up call, I decided I had to do something drastic, so at the age of 16, i took myself abroad for two months, to italy, England, and Switzerland (i earned and won the money through writing competitions). This was what gave me confidence, and inspiration, because I proved I could be someone worthy, and someone capable, and someone independant, and someone who can achieve dreams.

    Anyway, my point is… Bullying really DOESN’T have a clear black and white answer to it!! there IS no simple way to stop bullying, because at the end of the day who is there to turn to when its emotional abuse???? who is there to turn to when there aren’t always bruises or physical scars to show the world “hey he beat me up see ” ? The scars that are greatest, is the emotional scars. They’re the ones that will shape who you will become, and will often break you down to become the shell of who you once were. Just HOW is it possible to regulate this sort of bullying when theres no black and white evidence to say “hey this is what we call bullying” ??

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