1. Contrary to what people might say, bullying is NOT a “right of passage.” It is unacceptable behavior that must be changed, sooner rather than later.
2. Bullying is one child hurting, harassing, or being mean to another.
3. Bullying causes pain, anger, resentment and emotional trauma.
4. Bullying sets up an environment that allows negative behavior which then hurts and damages all involved.
5. Bullying must be replaced by positive character traits such as honor, kindness, dignity, self-control and respect. Children need to know the meaning of these words. Then they need to know how to practice them in real life.
6. The one who has bullied must apologize out loud to the one s/he bullied, then a reconciliation plan should be worked out for the next 3 to 6 months.
7. The one who has bullied must be stopped immediately, reported, talked to in an open discussion with all parties involved. This meeting should be attended by both sets of parents.
8. Speak TRUTH to the bullying situation.
9. Nip bullying in the bud.
10. Consider a paid playground interventionist, an individual who could be hired at every middle school in America. The job description must be clear and understood by the interventionist, as well as all children and adults.
11. There should be a required subject at every school on “conflict resolution” to include: how conflicts begin, what causes conflict, what has happened in the situation, parties involved, resolution plans, action taken and solutions to be put in place.
12. Values-based life skills should be a required subject at every middle school to be adhered to while in school.
13. There should be both forgiveness and consequences for bullying i.e. apology, reconciliation, conflict resolution, changed behavior goals and practical outcomes.
14. Bullying must be replaced by positive leader behavior: trust, honesty, honor, self-control and positive relationship building.
15. The root cause of bullying must be rooted out.
16. The person who is doing the bullying has a deep need to belong and to be loved. Appropriate counseling would be called for this person to realize his/her behavior and how to change it.
17. Continue to focus on positive qualities of behavior and how the bullying person can refocus his/her attention on positive qualities that will make friends, not enemies.
18. Bullying behavior can be changed. It takes firmness, boldness, perseverance and consistency. Show trust, kindness, and respect so kids can learn what these words mean.
19. Begin to teach your child about empathy and what it means to have empathy for others.
20. Help your child to understand and learn about self-love.