Q. I am worried that my son is being bullied at school. What should I do?
A. You are right for being worried about your son. Bullying has become a big problem for kids in today's world and the psychological impact is great. Kids who are bullied tend to have a lower self-esteem and are more likely to struggle with depression. There are, however, things parents can do to help children deal with bullies.
I’ll never forget the first time I heard Everett Worthington speak at a national conference. I was a very young therapist at the time and found myself often overwhelmed by the topic of forgiveness with clients. I had been to seminary and graduate school, so I knew all the right answers and knew what to say in sessions, but I was not always sure how to lovingly convey that message to hurting clients. I remember hearing stories of trauma, grief, and hurt and thinking to myself, “How in the world would I ever broach the subject of forgiveness with this person? That feels so cold!”
Well, parents—summer break is now upon us! For some, it is a welcomed relief from the rigorous activities that a busy school schedule creates; while for others, it can be the root of even more stress, as parents now have the task of figuring out how to keep their children entertained for two and a half months. In today’s age, many of us have grown dependent on the “built-in babysitter” that almost everyone has access to in their home: electronics! While electronics can serve a good purpose, as parents, many of us have come to rely too heavily on screen technologies when it comes to entertaining our children. If not monitored closely, this over-reliance can lead to addictive behaviors and can affect our children in a harmful manner.
As I sit down to write this article, the nation is still reeling from the school shooting in Parkland, Florida. The very first news story I saw this morning was about a terrorist attack in a foreign country. The second story was an interview with a survivor of the Florida shooting. At this moment, two political pundits are debating some issue (does it really matter which one?) with all the requisite eye rolling, name-calling, the sky is falling, ratings producing hysteria they can muster. And I haven’t even finished my morning coffee.