Whenever dealing with bullies, it is extremely important to smile with your eyes, your teeth, and your heart. You might want to imagine that the bully is having a really bad day or that he or she is sick with some disease. Deal with the bully in a gentle but firm way. You are letting him or her know that you have confidence and self-respect. It is not okay to call you names or to pick on you. Try to imagine that he or she is somebody that you really like. Naturally, you are not liking the part of him or her that is doing the bullying. You are, however, liking the part of him or her that is another human being who is worthy of respect.
Sometimes, young people do some annoying things or make an inappropriate remark. A parents or older sibling may counter this with the phrase, “I love you, but I don’t like your actions right now. I need you to stop doing that, please.” This is a more loving way of alerting your child or sibling to always be aware that he or she is loved whether or not he or she misbehaves.
Naturally, you would not tell the bully that you love him or her. You could think, in your heart, that the bully is a human being worthy of respect just like you are a human being worthy of respect (or a fellow child of God or your brother or sister in Christ). You can like the part of him or her who is that human being. You just don’t care for the hurtful things the bully is trying to do as those hurtful actions are neither okay nor appropriate.
When someone puts you down, know that they are crying out for more love or approval or attention. That is their way of stating, “I’m having a tough time in my life right now. The only way I know how to feel good about me is to put you down.” So, with that in mind, every single time that this bully calls you a name, ask these two questions that is key to making a personal connection with that person playing the role of a bully:
1. Are you having a bad day?
2. Do you want to talk about it?
This is demonstrated beautifully in this verse from the poem called “Outwitted” by Edwin Markham.
He drew a circle that shut me out-
Heretic, rebel, a thing to flout.
But love and I had the wit to win:
We drew a circle and took him in!
Three outcomes to every conflict
In every act of conflict, there are three possible outcomes: WIN-LOSE, LOSE-LOSE, and WIN-WIN. Naturally, the bully prefers to WIN. You, playing the role of victim, would prefer to WIN or at least not LOSE. But … if you can ponder that old expression that states “Kill him with kindness,” (author unknown) you can have a much better chance of having both of you come out a WINNER. You are not trying to kill him or her. You are, however, trying to kill or eliminate their need and tendency to bully you. So if you can truly smile at this person playing the role of a bully from your heart, you too can be a WINNER. You can also help this misguided bully feel like a WINNER as well.
To further reinforce this point, think about the verse in the song on YouTube called “Another Bully Buster Song.” (The embedded video is included at the end of this article.)
When you laugh and you smile,
Makes you feel worthwhile.
Smile from the heart,
Makes you extra smart.
A fun activity for parent and child
To further reinforce the importance of using good posture, play these two songs about bullies. Learn the songs and sing them together. Practice the skills indicated in the songs to make your child much more bully-proof. Here’s the links:
1. Click this link for “Anti-Bullying song for kids #1: My Bully Buster Song” on rootshed.com
2. Click this link for Another Bully Buster Song on YouTube. (Song is embedded within this article.)
Please note: This article was originally posted in 2009 under the former publishing tool. When it was discovered that it had some missing links and videos, etc., I edited it and re-published it as you see above.
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