I recently read a physician commentary on bullying. This was juxtaposed to a discussion with a friend (a bright, articulate, loyal, well-liked woman) who is being bullied by another adult woman. Here are some well researched thoughts about bullying—the individual’s age is immaterial.
Bullying today is a form of social cruelty. It may not be violent, but the Massachusetts Aggression Reduction Center found that repetitive seemingly minor “gateway behaviors” were the most frequent victim reports. These can be rude, insolent acts like eye rolling, snickering, whispering in front of others. These “gateway behaviors” (when not corrected) may normalize disrespect or even reward it. These minor acts can be toxic. When this occurs online, it may be in the form of forwarding comments or personal information or bashing the individual.
What can you do? As a parent, consider your or your child’s social lives online. Be clear about the absolute necessity to watch what one says, whatever the format (in person or online), and to always remain civil to others. Be aware. When upset or in distress, people are more likely to text others to garner social support. This can quickly escalate the situation. Do not try to resolve a disagreement or settle an argument by texting, emailing or instant messaging.
Want more information? http://www.bridgew.edu/marc/bully_downloads.cfm
“Where, after all, do universal human rights begin? In small places, close to home – so close and so small that they cannot be seen on any maps of the world. Yet they are the world of the individual person; the neighborhood he lives in; the school or college she attends; the factory, farm, or office where he works. Such are the places where every man, woman, and child seeks equal justice, equal opportunity, equal dignity without discrimination. Unless these rights have meaning there, they have little meaning anywhere. Without concerted citizen action to uphold them close to home, we shall look in vain for progress in the larger world.”
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