National Bullying Prevention Month: Resources for grandparents

National Bullying Prevention Month: Resources for grandparents

In recognition of October being National Bullying Prevention Month, my fellow GRANDparent Network members Leslie and Kay at Grandparents Link interviewed a couple kids on bullying. 

Take a look at their exclusive Frankly Kids: Bullying video (which they gave me permission to share):

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Grandma was a bully

I'm ashamed to admit that I was a sixth-grade bully. As an individual, I didn't have the personality to be a bully on my own. But in a group, I was just as guilty as the others of hurtful and hateful acts upon fellow students.

Two acts stand out in my memory:

• Once when the teacher had left the room for a bit, my classmates and I managed to hang a shorter classmate from a classroom doorknob by the band of his underwear. The bigger and tougher boys grabbed him and hung him while many of us girls giggled not only at the boys doing the dirty deed, but at the poor kid grasping for all he could to get down from the door knob and away from the embarrassment.

• Even worse was the time a group of us yet-to-develop girls decided to prove a bra-wearing and seemingly better developed girl in the class stuffed her bra. We decided to do the big reveal in front of some boys just to show them that she wasn't as endowed as she seemed and they could stop ogling her and her fakery. Turned out, much to our chagrin and her traumatic embarrassment, that her breasts were indeed real.

How very, very horrible we were.

At the time, these incidents were no big deal to me despite how painful they must have been to the ones we bullied. Since then, as a mother, as a grandmother, it breaks my heart that I participated in such cruelty. I'm sincerely sorry for what I did, but apologies make no difference for the damage and hurt that was done.

Such transgressions have crossed my conscience many a time in the decades since, but they've been especially top of mind since watching the following trailer. Released in select areas in March, Bully is a movie we all should see, consider, share.

As parents and grandparents, we can't shy away from doing our part to prevent bullying and to stop bullying when we see or suspect it—especially if we once were a bully or bullied ourselves. Find more info on the Bully movie Facebook page.

Today's question:

Were you ever a bully or bullied?