My nephew is 10 years old. Recently he received detention for get this, calling another little boy “annoying”. No curse words, no bruising, biting, punching or kicking occurred. But it hurt this little boy’s feelings so my nephew received a punishment. This was also paired with a letter, not from the teacher or principal, but the superintendent of schools. Seriously!? Because this is considered bullying. My goodness, I say the boy ought to man up or the next time he annoys someone, he might get punched.
This is like poking a sleeping bear. If you antagonize people long enough, no one is going to like you.
Basic needs psychology explains this by the need for connection, certainty, variety and attention. People do what works in order to stand out. If you don’t get good positive attention, you will create negative attention.
Bringing this on to my daughter. She has a very muscular build for her age. She is not a stick figure. Last week, a girl said “move it, fatty.” It broke my heart because I was also made fun of for my size. Eating disorders are affecting girls as young as 8 and 10 year olds simply because of the media.
I cannot always be there to fight her battles for her.
My teaching to her was this
there is always going to be that mean girl. The quicker you learn not to pay attention to them, the better the quality of your life will be. You guard what is in your head and don’t let them in.