This is one of the reasons I’m terrified of sending my kids to public school. I had a really crappy time at school from 8th-12th grade. I transferred schools and became an outsider. I was harrassed, called a lesbian (though I didn’t know what it meant until 2 yrs after I first heard it and didn’t realize I was a lesbian until I was 18), and threatened on a daily basis. My life was so hard. Two weeks after I started the new school, I transferred out. I told my mom that I couldn’t take it anymore. It really was that bad. I’m dramatic, but not that much. I agreed to go back a year later because it was more convenient for my mom. It was worse than it had been before. We ended up at the police station because we didn’t know what else to do. These girls were torturing me verbally on a daily basis and had started to call my house and be really obscene. It was a mess. In my freshman year, a senior kept pushing me around and telling me she was going to beat me. I told the principal, they brushed it off. Then one day, I’d had enough. She started threatening me and I hit her. I didn’t even think about it, I just swung at her. It resulted in a rolling around on the floor in the hallway kind of fight with her banging my head on the floor and me punching her in the stomach. Definitely, not my proudest moment. We were suspended and everyone was so SURPRISED that I’d do something like that. I’d been dealing with this intimidation for months and they acted like it happened over night. I don’t understand why schools, especially those with security officers, aren’t taking bullying more seriously.
The excuse that kids will be kids is NOT acceptable. Parents acting like it’s okay and that kids will outgrow it, is naive. Kids do not grow out of being bullies. People that were bitches as teens are generally still bitches as adults. It’s not okay to tell your kids to stick it out and it’ll get better. I do not believe that it gets better if you are a bullied person. Telling someone to hold on to hope that it’ll pass is not constructive advise. Not every youngster can hold on without help from adults and strong people in their lives. Kids are not strong enough to take abuse without either fighting back or withdrawing into themselves. It’s a touchy subject that parents aren’t sure how to handle.
I hope that all of this work to get legislation that holds people, including children, responsible for their actions is passed. It can’t be crazy with horrible punishments like life in prison for punching someone and threatening them, but they should be penalized for being cruel and purposefully hurtful. Here’s hoping for a brighter future for my children!