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Old 07-29-2003, 08:28 AM   #1
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Yeah, let's end ALL teasing and picking on kids for ANY reason. The schools seem to almost expect this and don't do much about it. Somebody started a rumor on me that I was gay, and even though I wasn't I got beat up, threatened and old friends stopped speaking to me. So I know how they must feel when it is true. The abuse became so bad that the principal ended up going to each one of my classes telling the kids they would be kicked out if they didn't leave me alone. They stopped the 'lezzie' thing, but I was still taunted throughout school as some kind of freak nobody wanted to hang out with. I couldn't even walk down the hall without some kind of rude comment or someone trying to trip me.

Once you get a reputation for being a target it's over. Either leave town, or look forward to life beyond school. Unfortunately, some kids can't do that, and end up committing suicide or shooting up the school. I would like to tell them not to, that no matter how much it hurts now, there will come a time when it doesn't matter. Hang on.
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Old 07-29-2003, 09:04 AM   #2
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Here is the new thread.
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Old 07-29-2003, 09:26 AM   #3
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I can totally relate to this. I was also taunted mercilessly for YEARS in school, and it didn't stop until I started college. That tells you how high school students can be: they are relentless with taunting once someone is labeled as a target, and you do pretty much have to change schools to get it to stop.

The one time I complained to a teacher about it--when I was physicaly dragged away from a lunch table I was sitting at--the teacher yelled at ME. Perhaps the most problematic discrimination in schools is not based on gender, race, or sexual orientation--it is based upon that most ephemeral and trivial of traits, popularity.

Like rape, teasing and taunting are HUGE, devastating problems that people just shrug off as "that's the way it is." And as I do with rape, I find such an attitude completely unacceptable.
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Old 07-29-2003, 10:08 AM   #4
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I can relate too. It's a sick and sad part of human nature that some people just plain get a kick out of putting someone else down. I hate people who love to find out what gets to you and then twist it like a briar under your skin and laugh devilishly with content. It takes a very bad and mentally twisted person to take pleasure in the torment of others.

It hurt me that, like you Pax, I was the one getting yelled at. I was considered the problem. Once they wanted to send me to the school psychololgist and my mother was furious. She said she'd send me when they sent the bullies, because they were the ones who needed help. The best way to "help" me was to stop them. The guidence counselor actually told me I needed "help" to deal with the way I was being treated. To this day, regardless of the reason, I believe it is the taunters who need the help, to see what is wrong with them mentally that they mistake cruelty for entertainment.

If I had been gay, too short, too tall, too ugly, too poor, from the 'wrong' side of town, or the 'wrong' ethnicity, I wouldn't have been so hurt because there was a reason. Though no reason is okay, at least you don't have to take it personally and you know anyone else in the same situation would have been picke don. It was because it was ME, me personally, that was not popular and not liked. That's the worst hurt of all. I never fit in with any of the groups and cliques, and I suffered for it. To this day I have an extreme hatred for groups of girls who gang up and giggle and make fun of other people. I don't know why people just can't avoid the people they don't like and not hurt them.
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Old 07-29-2003, 08:21 PM   #5
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Good idea Paxetaurora. 80sU2isbest's post belongs here too, since his is the one that inspired mine.
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Old 07-29-2003, 08:37 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by Tabby
It's a sick and sad part of human nature that some people just plain get a kick out of putting someone else down.
....
I don't know why people just can't avoid the people they don't like and not hurt them.
youve answered the question you posed in the last sentence with your opening.
its human nature and that is why, Leeloo, we cant
Quote:
Originally posted by Leeloo
end ALL teasing and picking on kids for ANY reason
all schools can do is foster an environment in which bullying will not be tolerated. but it will always exist, people will always slip through the cracks.
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Old 07-30-2003, 12:41 AM   #7
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youve answered the question you posed in the last sentence with your opening.
its human nature and that is why, Leeloo, we cant

all schools can do is foster an environment in which bullying will not be tolerated. but it will always exist, people will always slip through the cracks.
While it is definitely human nature, I do think schools are becoming more and more tolerant of this kind of cruelty.

There is no excuse for a teacher to yell at a victimized student--a teacher who handles a situation like that shouldn't be a teacher, plain and simple. Often, teachers a just as much a part of a cliche as the students. It's also crap for a school to send a victimized child into therapy, rather than the bullies.

I think the problem is that our society is becoming less inclined to punish wrongdoers and becoming indulgent of bad behavior, especially in children. And teachers who may *want* to help probably don't have the proper authority to punish students anyway. The whole system of education has broken down. From what kids are being taught to how they are being disciplined.

Kids are always going to tease each other and there are always going to be popular kids and unpopular ones. But there does need to be someone they can go to for help, who's going to listen to them and do something about it--not just give them the "kids will be kids" or "can't you just stay out of their way?"
Teachers and principals should be mature and professional enough to remain above it. If they can't and are siding against the "weird" kid, then they have no business teaching and should be fired.
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Old 07-30-2003, 02:10 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by Leeloo
Yeah, let's end ALL teasing and picking on kids for ANY reason. The schools seem to almost expect this and don't do much about it. Somebody started a rumor on me that I was gay, and even though I wasn't I got beat up, threatened and old friends stopped speaking to me. So I know how they must feel when it is true. The abuse became so bad that the principal ended up going to each one of my classes telling the kids they would be kicked out if they didn't leave me alone. They stopped the 'lezzie' thing, but I was still taunted throughout school as some kind of freak nobody wanted to hang out with. I couldn't even walk down the hall without some kind of rude comment or someone trying to trip me.

Once you get a reputation for being a target it's over. Either leave town, or look forward to life beyond school. Unfortunately, some kids can't do that, and end up committing suicide or shooting up the school. I would like to tell them not to, that no matter how much it hurts now, there will come a time when it doesn't matter. Hang on.
It's funny......I was just thinking about this very topic the other day. I remember junior high was a particularly painful time for me, as it unfortunately is for so many children. Everyday was like going to the battle front.....all the teasing and taunting and sexual harrassment (which at the time, being naive, I didn't recognize as such). At 22 I still have difficulty looking at my old yearbooks for the bad memories they bring back.

Your experience, Leeloo, is similiar to one of mine. Some months ago I was rummaging through some old boxes of papers that had been packed away and found an old letter I'd written to my mother in sixth or seventh grade. I suppose I'd blocked the incident out of my memory over the years, but as I read the letter the memories and tears came flooding back. Apparantly at the time my mother had noticed my acting different, depressed, and wanted to know what was the matter and I'd eventually broke down and told her everything in this letter. At the time I'd made friends with another girl who was an "outcast". I felt sorry for her because she was teased and tormented even worse than I was and I could empathize with her. We didn't hang out that much, just talked sometimes at school and rode the same bus together as she lived in my neighborhood. One day she was caught under the bleachers kissing another girl. No one identified the other girl but rumors started that it was me as I was one of the only people who spoke to her. Although it wasn't me, and I wasn't a lesbian, the abuse and name-calling worsened greatly. Somehow I made it through but my heart goes out to those that are homosexual and shunned for being so. I can somewhat relate to what they must experience.

Sometimes I wonder if those tormenters ever remember and feel some pang of remorse. Sadly, I've seen some of those people progress into high school and adulthood with this same mindset and behavior. It's quite scary really. For this reason, I agree that children that continuously torment other children and take pleasure from it should be psychologically examined, for their own sakes (who knows what kind of conditions they grew up in that led to this sort of twisted state of mind) as well as their "victims".
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Old 07-30-2003, 05:23 AM   #9
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In order for kids to become less cruel, the education on respect and tolerance and manners needs to be taught at home. By the parents. The people responsible for raising these children.

I've lost count of how many times, in elementary school, I heard kids talking about how their parents stayed out until wee hours of the morning, going around with god knows who, or having some parents in jail for drug crap, or having drinking problems, leaving the kids alone for so long, and paying absolutely zero attention to their children. They were never around to teach their kids to be nice to others, to show them some love and affection.

And, as a result, my elementary school years (particularly my fourth grade one) were made hellish by those kids who'd felt abandoned and felt unloved and all that. They took their pain and loneliness out on me. And I'd never done a thing to them. Some school officials did try and help me out, but the kids still were cruel, even up through my ninth grade year (then I moved over here and the kids here were, for the most part, a hell of a lot nicer to me).

We need to get parents to wake up and realize that they have a responsibility to raise their children and raise them right, and they can't just leave it up to the school to become the parents. That's the best way to handle this problem.

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Old 07-30-2003, 01:30 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by maude


It's funny......I was just thinking about this very topic the other day. I remember junior high was a particularly painful time for me, as it unfortunately is for so many children. Everyday was like going to the battle front.....all the teasing and taunting and sexual harrassment (which at the time, being naive, I didn't recognize as such). At 22 I still have difficulty looking at my old yearbooks for the bad memories they bring back.

this thread and response is a huge coincidence...yesterday i went thru my 7-8th grade yearbooks too. same experience, same reaction to all the kids's pics who i saw in the books. im 31, and the pain is too much still.
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Old 07-30-2003, 01:38 PM   #11
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Originally posted by Moonlit_Angel
By the parents. The people responsible for raising these children.
What a different world this would be if all parents actually took this responsibility seriously. With an 8-year old and a 3-year old, training is a daily, tiring, time consuming task. I’ve seen too many parents (even from households where only one parent works) treat school as a place to “fix” their children.

I’d be interested to hear from Dreadsox and Martha on the teacher’s view of the issue.
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Old 07-30-2003, 02:00 PM   #12
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What a different world this would be if all parents actually took this responsibility seriously. With an 8-year old and a 3-year old, training is a daily, tiring, time consuming task. I’ve seen too many parents (even from households where only one parent works) treat school as a place to “fix” their children.

I’d be interested to hear from Dreadsox and Martha on the teacher’s view of the issue.
In my opinion schools are more and more being expected to be the parent. There are two parts to this. Many of the children who pass through the doors to my school are entering the best part of their day. They get fed, they are in a safe environment, and they get attention from adults who want to be there.

The other part to this is the discipline. Many kids come to school that have not been taught how to treat others. They are coming from an environment that does not facilitate good behavior. I cannot speak for Martha. In my opinion there is a very big difference for me by being the only Male teacher in a school of 30 teachers. With me, it normally takes a look or a few words to straighten out a problem. I am 6'2 with a DEEP voice. I have to really tone it down when I speak with a child. The thought that they might not get to play kickball with me at the end of the week is usually devastating to a class and positive peer pressure seems to start early on in the year.

Parents on the other hand come in three categories. 1)They do not care if you have disciplined their child. 2) They care and support you, or 3) they care and you had better make sure that you have crossed your t's and dotted your i's when dealing with their child because they will believe the child before they believe you. Again, with me, I really feel I am treated differently because I am a male. Group three is the smallest group in my system, however they are the most vocal.

Society seems to recognize that there is something wrong with the social behaviors of some of the youth in school and graduating from them. The pressure is put on the schools to fix the social ills because the PUBLIC has some control over the schools. There is no real control over the homelife, where REAL change can take place. THe fact of the matter is though, that schools and teachers can make a MORE of a difference if there is SUPPORT from the parents.

I hope I addressed what you wanted me to. Martha has not been coming here to FYM any more. Maybe a PM will bring her to this thread. She may very well see things differently than I do.
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Old 07-30-2003, 02:05 PM   #13
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i think martha is on a roadtrip of sorts and has limited internet access. (she's supposed to be here this weekend. woohoo!) that said, if you want her to see this thread, a PM would probably be a good idea.
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Old 07-30-2003, 02:07 PM   #14
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The problem with schools doing nothing about kids being bullied by other kids is because some of the teachers can be the bullies too.

I once had a teacher who was a total sadist in the way he treated us. He humiliated, criticized, manipulated, harassed, picked-on us, told lies about us to our parents, whatever he could to taunt us. He enjoyed watching us get embarassed or uncomfortable, he loved it when we reacted by exploding with frustration or by blushing like hell. He would even make some students cry. Here's an idea how bad he was: he made one of the class bullies cry. Now how bad is that! And he loved it too! I remember him getting this satisfied smile on his face, and he kept on going picking on and insulting that one kid while he was practically bawling.

He's whole goal as a teacher was to sort out our weaknesses - being poor at a subject, or too shy, or too exasperative, or too passive, or whatever, and use it to torment us for the whole year.

And a lot of teachers are like this. There has to be a way for the school systems to remove all horrible teachers from the classrooms, because it worse I think, when the teacher is the bully, because when you're that young (that teacher was my fifth-grade teacher) you're not as aggressive or brave enough to stand up for yourself against a teacher - an adult- and those kinds of teachers take advantage of that. And its obvious that their only reason for becoming teachers is that they get to pick on the little guys and get away with it since young kids are too afraid to say anything because of the adult/teacher stigma.

Its a shame that there's so few teachers who really like kids and like to teach them.

Trust me, when I have kids, no teacher would dare to pick on my kids.

Perle
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Old 07-30-2003, 02:19 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader


What a different world this would be if all parents actually took this responsibility seriously. With an 8-year old and a 3-year old, training is a daily, tiring, time consuming task. I’ve seen too many parents (even from households where only one parent works) treat school as a place to “fix” their children.

Yup. Especially the part about the parent taking such a responsibility seriously.


Quote:
Originally posted by Dreadsox


In my opinion schools are more and more being expected to be the parent. There are two parts to this. Many of the children who pass through the doors to my school are entering the best part of their day. They get fed, they are in a safe environment, and they get attention from adults who want to be there.

The other part to this is the discipline. Many kids come to school that have not been taught how to treat others. They are coming from an environment that does not facilitate good behavior.
<snip>
Both my parents are teachers, and my father is a health-ed/phys-ed teacher at a rich high school. He also headed up the DARE and MADD programs for many many years. I've heard a lot of stories of the disrespect he receives, mainly from the male students (once in a while it will be a female). My dad doesn't take any shit, and sometimes is even frustrated by the principal's lack of discipline in the school (esp. towards students who parents have $$).

I'm not sure how this relates to the teasing/taunting thread. These issues are devastating to children and I think the teachers should NOT support it (silence supports it, too) but I do think the problem can only be permanantly fixed from the home, unless they do something severe and suspension/explusion is served.. but by then isn't it too late?

I volunteer at a middle school where 90% of the students are ESL, half of them living in shelters or group homes. Although I go there to do engineering projects with them, the biggest thing I try to teach them is respect. I think that's the largest factor our society lacks- respect.
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