Bullying has become a widespread EPIDEMIC that can be emotionally and socially devastating to a child.
When many of us hear the term 'bullying' we might thing of a larger child pushing a smaller one down on the playground. In reality it takes on many forms ranging from emotional, to mental and now, even cyber-bullying, where kids bully other kids through social networking sites like Facebook. Bullying can have far reaching effects on a child, causing them to become socially nervous and even depressed. Sadly, we have all saw the news stories about someone being pushed much further than they can emotionally handle...
What can we do as a community to stop the cycle of bullying?
Understand that bullying is made up of a triangle involving not just the bully and his/her victim, but the bystanders as well.
The first step to breaking the cycle is getting involved and intervening on the child's behalf. If they don't have the strength to stand up for themselves, someone else needs to show that bully that the child is not alone and what he/she is doing is NOT acceptable.
Parents, teach your kids to be compassionate toward another child who is getting picked on. It can be as simple as sitting next to the kid who sits alone at lunch. Its a matter of being brave enough to do it, but that simple gesture can show a bully that that child is not alone.
That kid could very well become the best friend your child has ever had.
The worst thing a child can do is stay quiet while they watch someone getting bullied. If they are too nervous about stepping in, go tell a teacher or school administrator instead.
Don't be silent. Let your voice be louder than the bully's.
-Dan Sorber is the owner and instructor at Fight Club Martial Arts in Rehoboth Beach. He is available to teach 'bully proof workshops' and help children and adults learn how to break the cycle of bullying.
Martial Arts lessons are available for both kids and adults. Check out http://fightclubmartialarts.com for more details or call (302) 396 7438