School bullying question

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"lord & master" :blink:

 

Reminds me of 6th grade summer camp... An enormous girl from the school in the skids lined us all up, single file, by boob size. I didn't have any yet, so it was very demoralizing. She also stomped on my brother's camera that my parents forced him to loan me... he still hasn't forgiven me. :lol:

 

Ah, the bumps and bruises of childhood. Hopefully what doesn't kill 'em just makes 'em stronger.

 

And while I'd like to encourage my son that the nerds of today are the masters of tomorrow, I know he won't listen, and will just have to learn it on his own. It's not all about size (my son is big)... bright kids tend to get bullied, as it's not 'cool' to be smart.

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John, he said the bully "had the biggest cock in the class", not "was the biggest cock in the class"...

 

You´re right, YL6. I made a cock-up there...

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I was picked on in primary school as well - the 'alpha female' picked on me because my parents are divorced. You have to bear in mind that this was a Catholic school so divorce (even in the late 80s/early 90s) was a bit taboo. I was called names and was told that 'God didn't love me'. When you're 7 years old, that kinda hurts. Mum eventually sussed out what was happening and she went straight to the girl's mum. Why? Because my mum knew fully well that a 7 year old couldn't spout out the things she did on her own. She had clearly got it from her own mother who happened to be a teacher in my next school. So she threatened to report her to the council. Never had trouble again.

 

Amazing what kids pick up at home...

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@OP - have you managed to get anywhere with the problem?

 

I was thinking about extra leverage/ideas for stuff you can bring up to make the school take a more active role and maybe get the little boys parents to take note.

 

You may want to get this checked legally but our day mother told us, in regards to biting so it may apply to other injuries, that should any future medical intervention be required the Krankenkasse will always chase the parents of the kid who did the biting (and if they have it, there insurance - not all personal insurances cover kids under 5...). She this can go no and on as in the case of a bite to the face, some operations to fix the damage can only be done towards the end of the teenage years.

 

As such, as I said, check out that should the worse happen, your kid gets injured and has to go to the doctor etc, how your health insurance will proceed. When my daughter poked me in the eye (still not fully healed 18 months later but getting there) TK wanted to details of the person who did it so they could claim off their health insurance/personal liability insurance. (seems that way at least).

 

If this is so, and if the parents of the kid or the school would be responsible for any medical costs etc, this is something you can take with you to the school. Tell them in no uncertain terms that should medical costs (I would also say that bullied children can develop psychological problems) that form what you know, the school/parents will be liable for the costs (and the increased insurance costs as a result) and if the do not have insurance (the parents) they will be personally responsible.

 

I would also check out of your insurance cover what you child does - ours does ;)

 

As I said, can't say if it is true but maybe worth checking out. Anything you can use to get the school motivated/stop the bullying is worth a try.

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With due respect, I disagree with the black gentleman in the video. I also disagree with the notion that if you stand up to a bully, they'll stop. That's not what I've experienced.

 

I am deeply sorry for what your child is going through and I wish you would take some legal action against the people involved. Bullying can leave a deep scar on kids.

 

I was 3 when we moved to Winston-Salem, NC and we stayed there till I was 4 before retuning to India. I have vivid memories of that time because it was my first time living outside Bangalore in such a different environment. I remember this one incident clearly. It was Christmas Eve and we were at a church. My mother tells me it was a Baptist church. Now we're Hindu and my parents are religious. I was playing around with a microphone with my friend Ian from next door when these two kids come up to me and start saying stuff I don't understand. My parents are elsewhere talking to people. I remember being hit on the head with the microphone. I was 4! And they ran away. The big woman who was to conduct the service screamed at me for breaking the mic.

 

We returned to India just before reunification (We were in Essen visiting my father's old lab and supervisor when apparently we heard that the Indian PM Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated). The four years in Bangalore, my home-town, my beloved town, were some of the best years of my little life. School was great. Even though it was a pretty strict catholic school and we routinely got beaten by the teachers, it was still fun. I hung out with a muslim boy called Farooq, a tamilian boy called Ranganath, a catholic boy called Thomas and a catholic girl called Mercy. Bullying is not a southern mentality.

 

And then I moved to that hell hole called New Delhi in 1996. 2600 km northward. Into complete alien territory. I didn't speak Hindi, only Kannada and English. At that time my English still had an american twang to it. I would pronounce, say, 'plant' the american way with a drawled out 'a' and that was a source of ridicule. The northerners speak terrible English and they were ashamed that they couldn't communicate with me properly so they resorted to bullying me because of that. I made sure I learnt Hindi as fast as possible.

I didn't know their food, their culture, their customs; nothing. The problem with the culture there is this: men are supposed to be tough and strong and show their 'manliness'. They do that routinely by teasing and bullying other boys. This is called 'Lena' in Hindi, lit. 'to take'. They found my name, 'Abhilash Dwarakanath' ridiculously long and stupid. They bullied me about that. They had no idea what or where Bangalore was. Automatically every south Indian up North is termed a 'Madrasi' (from Madras). I was always accosted as 'Oye Madrasi'. They would push me off the swings. They would bump me when I was walking down the stairs. They would pull my necktie till I would choke and then they'd let go. They would tug my shorts down and run away. They would pour ink on my pristine white school shirt.

The only friends I had from 3rd to 6th grade were girls. They were sensitive, they were nice, but that only made matters worse. 5th and 6th grade, we start to notice girls. Now I was exotic and had these girls hanging out with me all the time and those boys were pissed off. It didn't end well.

 

However, once in 5th grade, parents complained to the teachers that their kids bring back home their tiffin boxes unopened and they have no idea what their children eat. So the nice Sr Lucy who was our class mistress, appointed a 'monitor' for every row of seats to check our tiffin boxes before and after the lunch hour, note down what food (to gauge nutritional value) and report back. The one girl who used to be nasty to me was called Vijeta, ironically, 'the victorious one'. She once saw the shredded spinach curry that my mum had packed one day with rice and she told me I eat cow dung and she has no idea what this south Indian muck is and that is what she'll write in the daily report and that I better bring 'normal' food from tomorrow onwards.

 

In 5th grade there was this rich boy (well most of the students in that school were rich, except some of us who were on scholarship and the catholic students who got a subsidy; yes I studied in a catholic school even in New Delhi). After one yoga class, I was facing the wall and tying up my shoe-laces when this boy rams my head into the wall and starts preening. So I slowly get up and ask him what his problem is. He calls me a dirty, eating-food-using-hands-madrasi and rushes at me. I remember this one technique I had seen on TV, so I turn and use his momentum to lift him and ram him into the ground. Boy o boy was that a mistake. Got pummelled like a schnitzel outside school. Another rich kid in 7th grade regularly beat me up and if I resisted and fought back, I'd get more. He's even hit me with a cricket bat and has kicked me wearing football studs. After 8th grade it was just verbal teasing and bullying by the rich punjabi kids but no physical stuff.

 

However, the worst that I got was in the rideshare to school and back. New Delhi is HUGE and in those days public transportation was dangerous and it sucked, so my parents, as others, were loath to put me on a public bus. Taxi drivers operated a side business where they would, for a monthly fee, collect children in one area in the morning and drop them off at school and drop them back after. The rich punjabi kids again who travelled in that bullied me like crazy. Everyone used to carry their breakfast and eat it on the way because school started at 7.45 AM and the taxi came around at 6.45 AM. I was told by the kids not to eat my food because 'your madrasi food looks and smells like shit'. One day they even told me, 'We are warning your mother not to send you any more of your muck. Let her know'. I used to cry nearly every day at home to my parents to put me in an Army boarding school, away from these people, but they couldn't afford it. My father, the eternal scientist-philosopher said,"Son, the dogs keep barking but the caravan moves on. Be the caravan." I thought he didn't understand what I was dealing with.

 

One day when my uncle, aunt and cousin were visiting us, I lost my temper in the taxi and screamed at the boys to leave me the fuck alone. Their feathers were ruffled and they beat me up in front of my house with my mother looking on in horror and my diabetic uncle with one bad leg desperately trying to separate two grown boys from beating up his nephew.

 

From the very next day, I took the public bus to school. The worst bully, whose name ironically was Sumeet (good friend), failed his board exams and dropped out of school eventually. The other one whose name was Mehak (fragrance) now runs his father's business successfully. He mellowed out after he got serious with his studies.

 

When I finished school, I told my parents that I've had enough of north India, and I'm going back home to Bangalore, to the rest of the family to do my bachelor's studies (again, a jesuit college :P ). Probably the best decision I ever took. Three wonderful years with wonderful people, although it did have its share of back-stabbing and jealousy, but I still had a wonderful time with my ex before she cheated on me and my best friend who's like a brother to me. We were the fab trio and no one ever bullied us. Probably because the southern culture is much more mellow and gentle and bullying is a big no-no.

 

Finally, my experience is that when you grow up in a culture where male children are expected to be manly and mark their territory or whatever by showing down other boys, no amount of standing up to a bully works. You just get your arse whopped again and again. The only recourse is to leave the place and never go back to those people again. Or in civilised societies like here where the keepers of the law actually do keep the law, one can take that option.

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I wasn't really bullied but in my limited experience from where I grew up, it seemed that sometimes if somebody hits back, that is enough to stop the bad guy but other times when you have a couple of them who are friends and possibly with more followers as well, if you manage to beat up one of them, the others will beat you worse tomorrow. We had 2 gangs like that in the class that was one year older than me. I would try to stay clear of them and if they did catch me, not respond to them because they seemed to enjoy it more when the kids would try to fight back or show some other kind of reaction.

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the argument that bullies are bullies because they have something wrong at home or in some other area of their lives is not valid.

 

human beings are predators by nature. Some humans are able to control themselves, most cannot, which is why they need governments composed of even stronger bullies to herd them like cattle.

 

everyone has to learn to stand up to bullies. When bullies learn their target will not run but will turn to face them and start to pursue them, a miraculous change occurs.

 

But whether it occurs or not, we all have the job of neutralizing our enemies.

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Although I sympathise for kids having problems, it stops when they start bullying other kids.

No one in this word has the right to treat other people in this way.

 

It is at this point that the school system fails in a big way. It is unable to step in and manage a few simple things.

 

1). Protect the victims of the bully

2). Help the bully with what ever problems they have.

 

It is a really shitty situation where t a kid could get sent into care due to a bad home life. However, when I weigh this up with my kid going through hell I really lose all sympathy for the other kid.

 

They have been dealt the bad cards, as a society we should want to help, but in no way should that mean other kids have to suffer for it.

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I think people would sit around picking fruit off trees and having tons of carefree sex if we didn't have to go work and hadn't been conditioned to believe in the nuclear family unit. My inner utopian believes we would all share and take care of one another if resources weren't limited, and that it's in our nature to help others in need,

 

I agree with dessa on this one and I really, really want to live in the world that she describes.

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Wow, I really, really disagree. Maybe I am just naive, but I'm inclined to believe that humans tend to empathy and peacefulness. ...

 

Physical predation, which is what bullying is, comes from human genetics. The human being is one of the great apes, a mammal, an animal. Its genetic program is to spread its genes. Every male is a competitor to every other male because another male competes for females, and for resources which the organism needs to ensure its survival to propagate and care for offspring after it propagates. This is the reason for coveting other people's possessions, jealousy of one's possessions and friends, etc.

 

People who talk about psychoanalytic interpretations of social action, e.g., the bully had a rough childhood, are getting lost in trivialities. Just look at human history.

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Erm, I think it's your use of the word predator that trips me up. Even apes, while territorial, aren't necessarily predators, are they? I thought a great lot of them were herbivores? Not that the only definition of a predator is what it eats of course. I am also territorial, but I wouldn't describe myself as a predator.

 

Naturally I will take this time to say that we are no longer apes and that human history is full of lamentable acts that were exigencies of limited resources etc.

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Except girls bully as well and by the genetics rules logic,which I do usually subscribe to, bullying wouldn't be seen as attracting a mate. The male is looking for a mother of their offspring.

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Erm, I think it's your use of the word predator that trips me up. Even apes, while territorial, aren't necessarily predators, are they? I thought a great lot of them were herbivores? Not that the only definition of a predator is what it eats of course. I am also territorial, but I wouldn't describe myself as a predator.

 

Naturally I will take this time to say that we are no longer apes and that human history is full of lamentable acts that were exigencies of limited resources etc.

 

We are absolutely apes by scientific taxonomy. Some people may have trouble understanding the reason for human behavior because they refuse to accept that we are apes. Chimps and humans share 99% of their dna. Chimpanzees are carnivores and they not only hunt and eat other animals including monkeys, but they have, like all primates, complex hierarchies within their societies.

 

Bullying can also be seen as one person's attempt to drive another down in the hierarchy (pecking order) but the pecking order is maintained for the same purpose-- to secure the organism's ability to propagate its genetic line. The higher one person is in the pecking order, the more ability it has to propagate its genetic line.

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It is at this point that the school system fails in a big way. It is unable to step in and manage a few simple things.

 

1). Protect the victims of the bully

2). Help the bully with what ever problems they have.

 

A lot of bullying occurs away from the eyes of teachers. Almost all of the bullying I can think of in school happened like that. If so, then how exactly is the school to protect the victim against bullies? In those circumstances, it's the word of one child vs. the word of another. School officials cannot punish one student for "bullying" if they have no evidence of it.

 

Also, bullies tend to not be open about the "problems" they have that are causing them to act the way that they act. Are guidance counselors supposed to take bullies out of classes for hours each day and try to psychoanalyze them in the office and find out what issues they are dealing with? I don't think the school system "fails", unless it makes no effort to keep an eye out for bullying (especially after parents have complained), or unless the teachers see bullying and do nothing about it.

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Hm, well, we're not in total disagreement, network. I don't have a problem being genetically almost an ape, but then again we are almost genetic copies of every living thing on earth, and it doesn't take a rocket surgeon to see that DNA be damned, our behavior patterns have many similarities as well as dissimilarities to those of apes, and every other mammal for that matter. But to say, the ape does it, so that's why we do it, is only useful to a point--then we can start asking why we do things the apes don't? Apes have opposable thumbs, so why don't they build condominiums? Apes might not have the capability of speech, but they can understand as well as speak sign language, so why don't they write books?

 

It never ceases to amaze me how intelligent people make excuses for the shitty behavior of a couple of people and paint all of humanity with the same brush. I have a friend who reads too much news and based on the handful of rapists, murderers and terrorists in the world has decided that all of humanity is a cancer to the face of the earth, which I find a very sad point of view indeed. Reckons that basically all people are champing at the bit to rape children and enslave the masses. But think about that for two seconds, even with historical references, your main baddies accumulate to a couple of people, and everyone else who went along with it went because they were too scared, or too hungry, to do otherwise.

 

I think, even in ideal conditions, humans do pick out a pecking order, but along other lines. In tribal communities they often pick elders--people one could hardly say are the biggest, strongest and meanest of the pack. They are picked because of experience, and have the final say. Also, in many of these "primitive" societies, infighting is a punishable offense and the aggressors can be forced out of the group. Left to its own devices, humankind is not just a pack of hungry animals, willing to tear each other apart in order to get a foot up; even when resources are scarce, they govern themselves for the benefit of the whole. Of course there are warrior tribes, who loot and rape and murder, but again, I think it is not right to say that this is in people's inherent nature. You loot and steal because your own resources are scarce. This is why there is such a strong link between poverty and crime. Of course, even among poor people, criminals are still in the minority. Most people scrape along and try to do as best for themselves as they can without hurting anybody else.

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Hm, well, we're not in total disagreement, network. ...

 

We are in danger of veering away from solving the OP's problem, but much of what you say is true. The similarity between human dna and that of all living creatures explains that our behavior is just as predatory as that of all living creatures. There are superficial differences in more complex organisms, like social animals which humans are. Animals are social as a protective measure because there is safety in numbers. While this seems to produce hierarachies governed by the elderly, i.e., weaker members of the group, in fact it is still the same instinct on the part of each individual in the group to protect him or herself long enough to transmit their genetic lines. Thus group loyalty, which can include altruism (support for non-kin) actually has the same motive as bullying.

 

In a complex social system, the logic may not seem to go in a straight line. The female who bullies a male may not feel the male is worthy to mate with, so wishes to push him away, or she may be bullying him to take control of him to set up a household (nest) in which to raise children. She may want to mate with a stronger male who will enhance the survivability of her offspring. Among primate societies, status often is transmitted through the female, thus an elder (though physically weaker) female may have the most status in a chimp troop, and her son would derive his status from her.

 

Most humans are sheep, or pretend to be sheep, but they are sheep hiding their desires. People are suppressed as individuals in society by their need to remain under the protection of the group, but this produces resentments and subconscious aggression. Then when societies choose scapegoats, these "decent, law-abiding, hard-working, peaceful" citizens all pile on to persecute the enemy group, especially if the enemy group is weaker than they are. Jews, Blacks, Armenians, many groups have been thus victimized. So I would really not say that the majority of people are decent and peaceful if we look at what they allow their governments to do.

 

But humans play a little game. They always construct a pretext for hating the group they want to hate. This group then becomes the means for them to increase their position in the pecking order. One human ape can say to the other, "Look, I hate the outgroup even more than you do, so I am the alpha here." In their minds they fool themselves into thinking that the outgroup is bad for objective reasons, but it is easy to spot their hypocrisy because they refuse to rationally examine their beliefs. What they really want is an excuse to degrade other human beings.

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Except girls bully as well and by the genetics rules logic,which I do usually subscribe to, bullying wouldn't be seen as attracting a mate. The male is looking for a mother of their offspring.

 

And the female is looking for the best provider for her offspring, hence the bullying and catty behavior toward other women (who may be seen as competition).

 

I agree that animals are competitive by nature (and we are animals), but I do think that a rough home life contributes a LOT to bullying.

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Dear Ex-Pat,

 

I'm really sorry to hear that your child is being bullied. A child who cries twice a week and eventually walks away from school? I couldn't stomach that one.

 

If I were you, I would think about contacting the "zugehörige Schulamt" to obtain results.

 

Before contacting them, write a letter to your school's "Sozialreferent" requesting an appointment to discuss this issue and inform them that this is the last step you are taking before contacting the Schulamt.

 

If you do not receive productive help from you school in this meeting, then go directly to the Schulamt. Paper chain is good, write the letter here, too.

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I agree that animals are competitive by nature (and we are animals), but I do think that a rough home life contributes a LOT to bullying.

 

Yes, in the case of this individual aggressor, it may be a factor, but that is not going to solve the parents' and their child's problem in the long run because the problem of bullying is really a problem of the victim to solve.

 

Even if this bully is neutralized by the Sozialreferent or the Schulamt, other bullies will appear opportunistically looking for advantage. So a self-defense posture has to be developed.

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