Dealing with Bullies

GeekDad has an article up that hits close to home. I was hoping for some practical advice given that we have been dealing not even with bullying at school but with neighborhood kids.

I am at an utter loss at how to console my sons when they are ridiculed, with very adult taunts, from a couple of local bullies. They are so upset by these kids that they often will avoid playing in the yard on the off chance of encountering the little blighters. These larval delinquents have even stepped up their game to include ding dong dash in their repertoire, which you can imagine is more than an annoyance when I am in studio trying to record.

My wife has approached one of the parents and his response was merely, “Boys will be boys.” I am relatively certain that in high school, this father was part of the popular clique that tormented me and mine. The temptation to wreak havoc on this individual is nigh irresistible but to give in and use hard won hack-ish powers for such evil would be not only massively irresponsible but also setting the worst example for my sons.

Reading the story that GeekDad links to brings back this overwhelming sense of helplessness and rage. Are my sons doomed to the same hurt that I endured with only a vague hope that they will weather it as well as I did? The fact that I may be a bit more aware of their ordeal than my parents were is slim comfort.

3 Replies to “Dealing with Bullies”

  1. Thank you, that recommendation is very helpful. I was thinking there had to be an approach or technique to arm the boys with to defuse potential bullying. Also, when confronting the parents, I hope that this helps, though the problem there doesn’t seem so much to be the risk of confrontation but their utter lack of concern of their children’s budding delinquency.

  2. You will not like this counsel, but I went through the same thing. And learned avoidance. It will seemingly solve the problem of “confrontation”. However, what will remain is another problem: avoidance. This is no way to live. I see it in business all the time.

    You can teach your sons to stand in the face of anything. Teach them to control their own fear. When they have less fear than the “bullies”, the bullies will either go away or they’ll want to follow your sons.

    Confrontation can be dangerous, but life is about risk and life is getting more peaceful every day. Think about confrontation 100, 1000 or 10000 yrs ago. Chances are nothing bad will happen.

    Teach your sons to control their fear.
    Maybe martial arts could help. Not “self defense” but “inner discipline”. Calming the mind.

    Good luck.

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