Beacon writer says it was a shock when her child was called a bully
By Ritu Shannon
When a fellow mom from my daughter’s school called my daughter a bully I was shocked. Was she talking about the same six-year old girl that I know?
The one who could spend countless hours coloring pictures, catching butterflies and giving out hugs to anyone she can? Surely there must be some confusion.
But given this day and age and the power of the word bully, I felt it was important to meet with my daughter’s teacher and get unbiased and honest feedback. Thankfully, her teacher corroborated my own sentiments. She sees the same loving, kind hearted child that I see.
She also confirmed something that I already knew: my daughter is a leader. She is strong willed but emotional. She wears her heart on her sleeve and if someone gives her a hard time, she won`t back down.
But since when does being strong willed (and a little bossy at times) make a child a bully?
When a woman is strong willed in the business world people call her a bitch. I have been in management and I know I wore this label. “Ritu is intense. She can be a real bitch.”
So now we have parents potentially labelling children with this similar, in my opinion stronger, B word. Bully.
I do not, however, live in a complete bubble. I know kids can be feisty. Sometimes they need to be reminded to be kind or to “use your words instead of using your hands.” But every kid has these moments. Part of parenting is using these instances to teach and remind your child about the right way to handle these situations. I would never condone any sort of bullying whether my kids were involved or not.
We have all seen the sad and sometimes tragic consequences of repeated acts of bullying. Kids who have mean intentions and want to hurt someone for absolutely no reason but to make them suffer. That is bullying. This “other B word” should not be used lightly and carries very serious consequences.
These days we need to raise our daughters to be tough, make their voices heard and stand their ground. That does not, however, make them bullies.
Thankfully, my little butterfly chaser is an outgoing and spirited little girl – but she is not a bully. Please do not call her one. If you do, you will have to deal with her mother.
And she can be a real bitch.
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