Bullying – Be Careful What Message Our Response Sends

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Noah’s story is ongoing with some sad set backs but also some valiant steps forward.  What impresses me most is his incredible spirit and his desire to do everything he has the power to dream of.  He cries with the pain, and yet picks himself up and goes forward.  Can we hope for anything more?  Can we ask for anything more?

But, his brother, Elijah, who remains in the same school responsible for the original bullying with Noah, has had his own incident.  In this situation, a group of boys sharing a racial ethnicity, have become the bullies of the soccer field.  They refuse to be broken up to play on separate teams and together they wreak havoc with each game.  In this instance they bullied Elijah and threatened to kill his friend.  Now we have bullying that has racial overtones and a much more serious threat.  This happened in a school that advocates “zero tolerance” for bullying.

I have no idea why the police were not called in. Continue reading

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Zero Tolerance For Bullying.

zero tolerance

Zero tolerance.

You hear a lot of the schools talking about their stance on bullying but what exactly does it mean?

When I hear that, I expect that to mean that should someone bully, they will have to leave the school. There is no excuse for it, no allowance for it to happen, and the school will protect all the students by making sure none of them are ever bullied, BUT, if it should happen, they will take responsibility, learn from it, and remove the bullying child OR insist that child get professional help that results in a change of behaviour. One incident -warning with help offered, second incident – they are gone.

It is not about zero tolerance for a child.  It is about zero tolerance for the act.  Too often we disallow important discussion on subjects because we lose sight of that subtle distinction.  We are not enacting discipline because of who did it, we are enacting it because of what was done.  Anyone who chooses that action would receive the same treatment.  It isn’t even about law or justice, it is the inherent right that every human being has to exist and participate and remain safe.  Those who choose actions that takes away from that sense must be removed.  And then, it is not up to the school to fix the offender or police their actions, it is up to the parents to get the child the help they need. Continue reading

Bullying Asperger’s

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As many of you have already read, my grandson Noah, a 10 year old with Asperger’s, is currently in a psychiatric hospital because his only option to the bullying he suffered at school, seemed to be suicide.

He is perhaps one of the lucky ones.  I briefly heard a news report this week of another young boy with Asperger’s who had stabbed his bully.

We have started a group called Noah’s Ark for my grandson because now we must spend all our time trying to erase the damage caused and hoping to convince him that the bullies are the minority and that there are many good people out there in the world who care.  We also started a go fund page to help offset the cost for Noah’s family.  The victims are left with the damage and the costs.  The bullies are seldom taken to task. Continue reading

Noah’s Fight Against His Bullies.

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It has taken me a few days to sort out my emotions enough to write about this.

On one hand I realize our story is just one of thousands being told daily. On the other hand our story is every bit as important as any other.   We all do what we can do.  I write.

My 10 year old grandson has Asperger’s. He is such an amazing boy.  In some ways he is an ancient soul contained in a red headed, somewhat awkward, pre-pubescent boy’s body and in others he is just a little boy who is scared and unsure.

He makes me laugh. We have Skype time as he is in the States and I am in Australia – and we talk about life and his dreams. We had made a special Skype date, he wanted to take me to his open house at his new school so he could show me where he would be and all of the cool things that were there. He was really excited about doing robotics.

He has an interesting perspective of the world. I listen and help him explore his thoughts. He reads me stories he has written, and he is really good. We talk about the book he wants to write this summer and he sends me bits and pieces for my approval. Sometimes I see he has tried to call me several times in one day and sometimes days go by. He likes it most when everyone else has gone out and we can talk privately in his room.

It is pretty awesome to know a 10 year old boy thinks you are cool and likes to hang out with you.

That is why when I found out that he has been repeatedly bullied until he wanted to take his own life and had to be hospitalized, I was devastated. Continue reading

How We View The World Around Us

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see the rest of this thought provoking post here:

             This just changed the way we see Beauty and the Beast. Mind blown.

I read this today and have to comment on it.

We are currently focused on bullying in social media and discussion about what is being done, what can be done, is typical of many of our approaches to our problems – we are talking band-aids – what kind and when to apply.  It isn’t easy to have to stop and take time to figure out actual causes – because knowing the cause requires much harder, long term work, than simply applying an effective, temporary band-aid.

Lots of discussion on loneliness lately as well.  We are now realizing the damage that prolonged loneliness can cause a human being.  At least we are waking up to the fact life is not just about the physical, immediate, identifiable, measurable situations that impact us. Continue reading

The Things We Leave Unsaid and Undone When it Comes to Disabilities

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Recently, as I sat waiting for my husband, I overheard a conversation between two ladies.  They were discussing their “handicapped” child who was now an adult.  Woven into the conversation was all the pain of raising a child in a world that does not understand or make a lot of space for children with special needs.  The mother talked about how difficult her life had been, trying to keep the balance between preparing her child and protecting him from the world.  She talked about how she had to keep him from taking on activities he was sure to fail in.  As the conversation progressed a few things became obvious. Continue reading