That is a question that has been asked by parents for many years. The answer might be better appreciated if asked, “Will parents teach their children not to bully?” Abusive parents are the common denominator with any type of violence that involves children. This is a cycle of violence and bullying that needs to be broken. How many children are part of a broken home who do not turn into a bully or end up being bullied?
What needs to be taken into consideration is the mental health of the bully. There is a reason behind their behavior and why he or she is doing it. There is a reason that we as a society will never know unless we treat the bully as a victim of circumstance. It can be difficult to understand this concept. How is the bully a victim, especially as it relates to society? The answer is simple. In many cases, the bully has been ostracized by their family and now from society. He or she does not understand that what they are doing is wrong. The bully does not understand that he or she is not respecting the individual’s rights. He/she does not know the true impact of their actions.
As a society we educate our population, but what happens when that education is blocked or misconstrued? Are these children not getting the proper education at home to survive in the world? A bully, for the most part, is lashing out because of what he/she sees at home. He/she is behaving in a way that was learned from his or her parents, siblings, and/or family in general.
Education starts at home. Not in the typical sense of education, where you learn your ABC’s and multiplication tables. The education on how to behave, respect others rights, and above all, know the difference between right and wrong. The key aspect of this education is teaching your children to respect others. It is hard to teach that respect to a child when one grew up without learning it. Hence, a vicious cycle of bullying can commence. A child who did not learn from his/her parents, their parents from their own, and so on. These cycles are quite common among victims of abuse and children who are raised without boundaries. To see this first hand on a daily basis goes to an elementary school during the drop off time and the pickup time. Watch how parents speed through to get in front of the school bus. Pay attention on how they do not let others cross the street. Listen to the words they scream from their cars to the children that are walking slowly. Cringe at each car that almost hits a child because the parent is on the phone, or buckling their child in as they drive. You will leave the school wondering how those children will grow up. Will they be bullies just like their parents?
To see this first hand, on a daily basis, go to an elementary school during the drop-off and pickup time frame. Just watch how parents speed through to get in front of the school bus. Pay attention to how they do not let others cross the street. Listen to the words they scream from their cars to the children that are walking slowly. Cringe at each car that almost hits a child because the parent is on the phone, texting while driving, or buckling their child in as they drive. You will leave the school wondering how those children will grow up. Will they be bullies just like their parents? Will the cycle of bullying continue into the next generation or will the children realize the error of their parents’ ways?
In order to curb bullying behaviors at school, we need to start with the parents. If parents who grew up with bullying can teach their children respectful behavior and actions, it would be most beneficial to society. We must analyze what we do as parents and go from there. We as a society can eliminate bullying. It might take a generation or two to succeed, but it is worth the wait. Therefore, the question raised–will bullying ever stop? The answer is yes. Bullying can be stopped with our help as a global community.
Opinion and Blog by Andres Fragoso Jr.
Edited by Leigh Haugh