Children and their mother walking home from school


I Don’t Think We’re Doing Enough To Deal With Bullying

Oct 14, 2022

Bullying is a word I hear a lot, whether it’s from anti-bullying days at school or campaigns.

You’d think by 2022 there would be more awareness and less bullying, but I don’t think that there is.

I pride myself on raising strong girls.

Defiant girls who speak their mind.

I always tell them to speak up and speak out.

I never thought my beautiful, kind and defiant girl would one day be bullied and feel weak in front of her bully.

But it happened.

According to one mom, this is how to avoid raising a mean girl.

The Bullies Continue To Bully

She always loved going to school ever since she was in preschool.

But this changed suddenly.

Mornings became hard — she just didn’t want to go.

She wanted to stay home with me.

I talked to the teacher, expressed my concerns and he told me some girls are being a bit mean.

That day I took her for a mommy-and-daughter date after school.

"Mornings became hard — she just didn’t want to go."

I asked her about school, and about other girls in her classroom.

Her face changed and she said, “I don’t want to talk about it.”

I took this opportunity and slowly tried to let her talk about everything. Girls were mean to her. They made fun of her, like about how she dresses.

They were teasing her, telling her she can’t play with them.

In Grade 1, a time when all kids are still getting to have a connection with the outer world. All I could think was: These are first graders?

I was simply stunned!

Finding Friends Is Hard

I told her to try and play with other kids and ignore her bullies, which she did. But still, she didn’t have a close friend.

She played well with boys from her classroom and other girls in our complex. But girls at school were different.

I had many nights where I cried.

Because, really, all any parent wants is for their kids to be happy and healthy.

"I wanted my cheerful, school-loving girl back."

I prayed that she would have one friend at school. I wanted my cheerful, school-loving girl back.

It didn’t happen easily.

But life is sometimes unpredictable and weird.

Just as it was for my daughter.

Shared Experiences

This year, she finally had a new best friend.

It was a girl who moved from another city after having some issues herself.

This girl was also bullied at her school.

Imagine: a family not having any options except uprooting their whole family, to help their child’s mental and physical well-being.

It’s upsetting to think that it should ever come to this, but it does.

And when that happens, kids must leave friends and abandon the places they’ve known their entire lives.

They move houses, and they have to quit their activities and sports.

And all because not enough could be done to stop the bullying.

Childhood bullying may seem inconsequential to some, but tell that to these families who reach a crossroads where their only option is to leave.

A Blossoming Friendship

Although both girls faced bullying on different levels, they didn’t lose hope of trying to have connections with others again.

Which I’m so grateful for.

When they both met at school, and they sat next to each other, by coincidence or fate, they bonded instantly.

Both girls are very sensitive and empathetic, they love to help others, and they’re very kind. A beautiful friendship blossomed from a traumatic event.

"It can affect their relationships, warp concepts like trust and skew how they view themselves."

And schools try their best to highlight bullying and try to teach kids kindness, but unfortunately, it’s a very passive approach.

There are severe and tragic endings to bullying, and there are emotional and mental scars that the kids carry around and grow up with.

It can affect their relationships, warp concepts like trust and skew how they view themselves.

At such pivotal and early developmental stages, bullying can really set off a terrible chain of events if left unchecked.

Why Laura Mullin is teaching her daughter to be respectful, but not nice.

More Help Now

In my opinion, I don’t think the schools are doing enough to tackle bullying.

This is not a “kids will be kids” situation — this is serious.

We need to provide more mental health strategies and programs that not only focus on the bullied, but the bully as well.

Maybe the bully is dealing with issues that are contributing to their anger at school.

The parents also need to be included in the conversation, to find the root of this epidemic and try to work together as a community for a better future for our kids.

This should be one of our priorities.

"Some will feel like they have to navigate their bullying alone."

I’m grateful, and my heart is full, knowing that my daughter found a friend who understands her.

She no longer dreads recess and is becoming more outgoing and confident.

But she’s lucky.

Not everyone will have the same kind of generous, caring person sit next to them at random.

Some will feel like they have to navigate their bullying alone.

And I don’t think any kid should ever have to feel that way.

Article Author Karen Habashi
Karen Habashi

Read more from Karen here.

Karen Habashi is a mother of three wonderful yet exhausting kids. She uses caffeine, sarcasm and writing to try and make sense of life. And hopes she can make the world more empathetic and kind with her writing.