This week I’ve been tackling the thorny topic of BULLYING. In the last few years a brand-new form of bullying has cropped up—cyber-bulling.
Due to mobile technology, bullying is no longer limited to a particular space and time, such as on the playground or the school bus. A child can be taunted or threatened anytime, anywhere…even in the middle of the night in their own bedroom!
That’s why parents need to closely monitor their child’s use of electronic communication. Before allowing your child to have a smartphone or engage in social networking, let him know the ground rules up front. Explain that you will be monitoring texts and posts, and that as a parent, you will do whatever is necessary to keep your kids safe and provide them with moral guidance.
On a different note, what should your child do if she witnesses another child being bullied?
As followers of Christ, we should be teaching our kids that every human being has worth and value, and that we will not stand by and allow a child to be victimized by a bully.
Paul Coughlin is one of the foremost Christian experts on bullying. He stresses that when it comes to bullying, kids need to be encouraged to move from being “bystanders” to being “alongside-standers.”
Paul cites research that found that if just one bystander assertively tells a bully to “stop,” in many cases the bullying will often cease within 6 to 8 seconds.
There is also power in numbers. If 2-3 kids band together and tell the bully to stop, the bullying will cease almost immediately, and often the victim will not be bullied again.
Challenge your children to join with other friends at their school and become “alongside-standers”—courageous kids who have the ability to stop bullying in its tracks.
I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.
Listen to today’s audio here.