You probably know bullying when you see it, but can you define what it means?
Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behavior that is repeated and involves an imbalance of power – when kids use their strength, size, popularity or access to information against others, according to stopbullying.gov.
It comes in many forms, including making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally or even excluding someone from a group on purpose, according to stopbullying.gov.
An El Paso anti-bullying nonprofit group, Lucid Love, works to educate the community about bullying, how to prevent or stop it, and spreads the message of love and faith.
The group was established in loving memory of Johann Sebastian Cabada, a victim of bullying who committed suicide.
“The organization has been established since November 2014 and has delivered its message of love and faith to over 100,000 students, faculty, parents, service men and women, and public figures,” director Sal Montelongo said.
Kid’s Inc. talked to Sal about his organization and advice the group has for students, parents and teachers when it comes to bullying.
Q: What three things do you tell kids about whey they shouldn’t bully others?
We don’t know what people (kids) are going through. We also tell kids this violence you’re showing toward others reflects on who you are as a person and will follow you.
Q: What advice do you give kids who are bullying others?
We advise kids to seek counseling because there always is an underlining problem that has to be addressed that may be pushing you to bully. Keep a journal to write down what is bothering you or simply write about your life experiences. It’s not easy, but ask for forgiveness from those you bullied and others you might have hurt with your behavior.
Q: What advice do you give parents or teachers of kids who are being bullied?
Know the signs: withdrawing from activities, sudden changes in appearance or behavior, not making eye contact. Encourage kids to rebuild and show them every day counts. Tell kids their lives are worth something.
Q: What about for parents of kids who are doing the bullying?
Seek help. Find out why the child is acting out. Parents and teachers cannot ignore this negative behavior that can lead to so many problems that can last a lifetime.