The CoolCat Teacher – Vicki Davis

Four and a half years I lived bullying. I cried every day after school when I made it to the respite of my room at home. I often ask myself what I would have done if my bedroom weren’t my solitude? What if I couldn’t get away? Even if bullying “goes away” the scars don’t. How can I be in my forties and still be feeling the aftershock of when I was 14?

“What are several real ways you’ve seen bullying reduced?” This month’s question as part of Cathy Rubin’s Global Search for Education is hard. I’ll share three things that worked with a disclaimer. I am sharing what I’ve seen WORK. Consult with a counselor (like I have) if you’re helping your children through bullying. Every situation is different. If your child is depressed or suicidal GET HELP IMMEDIATELY. Bullying is serious. Don’t ignore it. These are three things I’ve seen work. They may not work in your situation.

1 – Learn to Defend Yourself

When bullied between fifth and ninth grades, no one came to my rescue. I came to my rescue. I remember the day it happened. I bounded into homeroom in ninth grade. “Miss Mean Girl” made a cutting remark about my outfit as she did every day. I looked at her and said,

“You know what – I don’t care. I honestly don’t care what you think anymore.”

And I didn’t. And that was it – I was free. I don’t know where the ability to no longer care appeared. Was it the self-confidence my parents instilled in me? Was it prayer? Was it maturity?  When dealing with mean taunts – bullies often select people who care what they think. When you stop caring, they may stop bullying you. For me, it stopped when I stopped caring.

We let my son take Tae Kwon Do lessons. His bullying ended the day he stood up for himself. Again, this is controversial and doesn’t work for everyone but it helped him. They stopped hitting him when he hit back one time.

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