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Who is responsible for a bully?
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Olivia_WebMD_Staff posted:
If a kid is a bully at school, who is responsible for making him tow the line?

Many parents say that their children are perfect angels at home, and that they are unaware of the behavior going on at school. Teachers and administrators point the finger back in the direction of the parents. While the debate rages on, the bullying behavior is often continuing to the detriment of both those being bullied and the bully himself or herself.

In your opinion, who is responsible for putting an end to the behavior?

What would YOU do?
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An_241873 responded:
This seems like a tough call. I had a bully in 3rd grade he busted my lip open and harassed me very badly. My dad met with his parents and the boys dad went toe to toe with my dad saying he raised a perfectly good kid. Maybe he picked up on the anger that seethed from his dad. I'm not sure. All I know is I hope he turned his life round. We were only in the third grade!!
 
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mrswhitecastle responded:
Why is only one party responsible for stopping the behavior?

I think the school and the parents both have a responsiblity to put an end to it.

The school needs to put an immediate stop to the behavior when they see it, along with immediate consequences. They can also stress to the whole class why bullying is not acceptable. The parents need to also talk and have consequences at home about why bullying is not acceptable.
 
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iocasta responded:
Ultimately, it falls on the parents. Teachers and the school have the responsibility to remove the bully from the school environment for the safety of the other students but the parents must address the issue. I do believe that if the parents fail to address the behavior, they should be held legally accountable.

I think the real question is what consitutes bullying? I think a lot of normal, albeit cruel, behavior is being labled as bullying. Yes, it sucks to be teased, I have been there but life isn't all sunshine and roses. I think there has become a tendency to over protect children from harshness. This is a real disservice because once they go off on their own, they are unable to deal with it at time when they have to figure out how to navigate the world on their own. I'm not saying let your kid get beat up or tolerate mean girls but sometimes children need to figure some of this out on their own with some minimal adult oversight.
 
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missmarti57 responded:
Tracking bullying behavior can be a challenge for both schools and parents. Bullies are smart and can do their damage under the radar of teachers, because it is usually verbal towards their victims and it can be nearly impossible to hear every thing that is said especially in areas where there is already a lot of noise. Kids also don't want to rat on their tormentors because they have been told 'they will pay for it later'. Parents need to be alert to their children, and need to monitor their children's behavior and closely monitor their phones and internet sites for any evidence of bullying behavior. If any bullying is noted ,by either teachers or students, the bullies and their victims(and their parents if the bullying does not stop) need to be brought together with an adult to mediate between the parties and help both of them come to an agreement that can be lived with by both.
 
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An_241873 replied to missmarti57's response:
Very well said. Hope that the meeting between the two works! Sometimes like in my case the kids parents got defensive saying their kid did nothing wrong.. yea right!
 
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missashley1010 responded:
Bullying is something that happens to just about everyone either your the bully or your being bullied. I think yes its the teachers and schools responsibility if they see it they need to take care of the situation at the time seperating the two and then placing consequesces for that student. If the behavior continues then its time to get the parents involved because bullying is a behavior issue which the parents need to handle. Iv been on both sides I was bullied when I was little because I was over weight it hurt and as I grew up I the bullied back because I had to stand up for myself..most kids figure it out and learn to stand up for themselves. I learned to not be so passive and when someone wanted to pick on me id stand up for myself. Bullying is something that will never end its actually getting worse because kids are now cyber bullying but the good thing about that it can be documented and shown to whom needs to see it.
 
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babes55557 replied to missashley1010's response:
Babes55557

I believe it starts at the home and if the school is aware of someone being bullied they should have a meeting with the parents, suspend the student for 3 days. Then I believe there should be a class just for bulling at school so when the student returns back to class they have to role play how it feels to be bullied.

And how it feels to lose someone because of bulling. And the effect of suicides due to bulling in schools. What the family goes through from the loss of a son or daughter.

To me that would be devastating.

Role play gives you a taste of what its like on the otherside.
 
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Anon_138320 responded:
In my opinion whoever is privy to the fact that there is any bullying going on. How it is handled is very important to putting a stop to it. I feel early education is detrimental to helping awareness at a very young age and teaching steps to know how to help one who is being bullied falls on all our shoulders.
 
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Headline replied to iocasta's response:
@ locasta: Why should cruel behavior NOT be "labeled as bullying"? Why should children not have help and support when faced with cruel behavior of any kind? How does it benefit a child to have no guidance in how to protect themselves from treatment they don't deserve, and no support while they're still getting to the point developmentally where they can actually learn those skills?

I was never physically bullied in school, but I was constantly taunted for my size, my social and physical awkwardness, my good grades... I spent school being "the fat ugly nerd," and because of people who believed I should just suck it up and learn to deal with it on my own because "kids will be kids," that taunting never stopped. I heard so many times that there was nothing that could - or should - be done, I eventually didn't feel safe asking anyone to help me or telling anyone I was hurting because of those awful words and constant rejection.

Did the "kids will be kids" approach help me at all? NO. When I experienced even worse treatment at my former workplace - name-calling, threats, false accusations - I had no idea how to handle it other than do what I had learned from the "kids will be kids" approach. And what I had learned was: No one will help you. No one cares. There is nothing that you or anyone can do to make this better. You are alone, and you deserve it.

The adult oversight should be MUCH MORE than minimal. Children who are hurting because of their peers' actions - whether you believe it's worthy of being called bullying or not - need to know that there are people who will care about and help them. For those of us on the receiving end of bullying, physical or verbal, "kids will be kids" does not solve the problem or ease the hurt or teach us ANY good coping/self-protection skills. It says we are alone, and in the mind of someone who is being mistreated and getting no support, "alone" easily translates to "deserving."

To answer the original question - any adult who sees it is responsible for making sure discipline and protection happen. And the adults who help to shape their young bullies' behaviors should be held to account every bit as much as the child bullies themselves. Children learn cruelty somewhere, after all.
 
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An_241873 replied to Headline's response:
Help and support can be used by asking the child how they think the situation should be handled and how to handle it on their own. I understand what locasta is saying. If the parents dont immediately jump to their kids defense and help them to solve it on their own would be helping them down the road. After all as the saying goes "If you catch a fish for a man you feed him for a day, but if you teach a man how to fish it feeds them for a lifetime."
 
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dale8earnhardtjr responded:
Well, if you think about it, it depends on who the individual is personally. What I mean is, maybe he/she is a bully because maybe they have a rough personality, maybe at home (parents divorcing or some other issues). If you are the victim of a bully, I feel that you should build up not only courage, but self confidence to face your tormentor and you should be responsible to put an end to social torment.
 
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chatley64 responded:
Ultimately, the parents need to take control of their bullying child. Most parents of a bully don't do anything with their child. A lot of parents think if they acknowledge that their child is doing something bad, this makes them a bad parent. They are too stupid to understand that being a good parent is making your child take responsibility for their own actions. Parents need to use discipline in these situations. If the parents aren't going to make their bully behave, then the bully needs removed from the school. This way the other children can remain safe.
 
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1nt3rnalc0mbu5t1on replied to dale8earnhardtjr's response:
Dale Jr. great points. A wise man once told me that everyone needs a good butt kicking...Am I saying that you should go looking for a fight? No not at all, but it teaches you to be humble, you might get knocked out by a kid half your size, it will teach you to not judge a book by its cover. Sadly i never had the good butt kicking, i wasnt bullied persa but i was picked on some. It did affect me greatly and it still does to this day and alot of my personal issues could be related to that. So maybe if i would have stood up for myself and got a butt kicking it may have helped my confidence whether i won or lost, I had the courage to stand up to a tormentor. On the other hand, i also had the common sense to avoid a fight by being able to reason with the unreasonable. The old adage is true, you have to pick your battles.

You can point the finger at the parents of both parties and the school systems. But in all honesty i think that if we do that, it takes the responsibility off of the children, they learn a lesson that everyone else will handle their problems and instead of standing up to their fears and confronting them. You may take your lumps but in the long run, you'll be better off than the tormentor.
 
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Boyzmomee replied to mrswhitecastle's response:
I agree. The school is responsible for protecting students while at school. The parents also need to take action which could include not only consequences but consultation with a mental health professional.


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