Bullying: A Big Complicated Problem with Many Simple Solutions

If each one of us untangled one string at a time...

Monday, June 7, 2010

Jessica Alba Gives Hope to Kids Who are Bullied

According to an interview for The Ticket, an entertainment blog, Jessica Alba was bullied badly as a child.

If the bullies were trying to destroy her confidence, they obviously didn't succeed. The kids giving her a hard time are probably mortified now (if not, they should be!).

Two things struck me about her story. One is that her Dad, a former military man, walked her into school every day. Way to go, Dad. And two, it was before cyber bullying became a huge issue so I'm assuming she at least had some escape at home.

In our country where we glorify physical beauty, it's hard to believe that everyone, even those with good looks, can be a target. Even though Jessica Alba was beautiful, she was bullied. Phoebe Prince was also very pretty and she was bullied. But poor Phoebe didn't have an escape. Cyber bullying made that impossible.

The moral of this story is that noone is immune to peer abuse. As parents, the more we're aware, the better the outcome. As far as cyber bullying is concerned, ask kids...and ask them often ...if things are going ok, even online. One of the biggest problems is that the vast majority of kids don't tell their parents when something goes wrong. So I guess we have to ask and ask and ask. (And if someone is mistreating them online or through texting, don't pull the plug out of the computer or take their phones away. That's why they don't tell us in the first place. Work with them on a solution. Here's a link to Common Sense Media if you need some solid advice.)

Jessica Alba had the last laugh. Here's her advice:

"Anyone out there who gets bullied should realize that they can take control and succeed."

I agree. Have fun leaving the bullies in the dust.

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