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Yikes!Classroom harrassment on 6th grader[advice needed]

post #1 of 19
Thread Starter 
Can anyone offer advice for my 6th grader grandson who is being verbally bullied? He slapped a boy and both & the other boy both got suspended today, but he is getting discouraged at being mocked. He & his new friend Chris are both newcomers to the school; it's a "magnet" school and he was so excited to have been accepted there because of all the fighting at his old school. What a disappointment that he's becoming a "target". For the record, he does have long hair, and although he is over 1/4 Mexican and Native American, he is also being targeted for being "white" - like he tries telling the kids, it shouldn't matter
post #2 of 19
I know its easier said then done, but really ignoring them, even to their face is the best.

By providing a reaction to their comments, they know what buttons to push in your grandson so they will continue to do it.

What also has to come from your grandson is a sense of self confidence: He knows who he is and loves and accepts himself for it, despite what others may think.

I understand where he's frustrated though. I was picked on a lot growing up and finally I kicked one of my main sources of frustration...in the butt. I can laugh at it now, but I really hated her back then.
post #3 of 19
I was always told by my family a bully is only a bully because someone is listening. If you ignore them, they go aweay, because not only are you not hearing them any more, but they have no one who is listening. No fun talking to yourself. If they continue, perhaps look into changing the class or sit down with the other childs parents and come to some sort of agreement on the behavior of their child. . . It is not fair to feel unwelcome in school. They already dont want to be there as it is. . . Good luck and I hope there is a quick resolution. . .
post #4 of 19
My Mom once told me the best attack at a bully was to laugh at them... it works pretty well.
post #5 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by Forensic View Post
My Mom once told me the best attack at a bully was to laugh at them... it works pretty well.
I like that one. . . did not think about that one! No one likes to be laughed at. Some guy got in my friends face at a bar one night and my friend just started laughing. they guy could not look him in the eyes. It was so funny. Finaly he walked away scared. . .
post #6 of 19
If I'm reading that correctly, your grandson slapped someone. Was that a reaction to something?

Maybe he needs a little bit of time to get out of the violent mindset of his old school. I know when I was being bullied by two girls in my neighborhood, I proved that I could take it without much reacting, without running to my parents, etc, we suddenly became pretty good friends. Kids are weird like that, it's almost like that kind of thing is a test to prove you are 'cool' enough and then if you pass the test, you're in and it stops.
post #7 of 19
Thread Starter 
Thank you for all your support! Yup, it's a tough situation - one kid was razzing my gs for saying "Gangs suck" because he wouldn't act like a " Crip" by doing the "Crip walk" and he tried telling them that he didn't know what the "Crip walk" was. The kids were telling him that "he's gonna get 'popped' if he doesn't decide between the Crips or Westcoast or Represent. He says that they also try to talk weird; he tried to tell them "West Coast? East Coast? It shouldn't matter"...ohh, it's a harsh world that I can't begin to understand. and those poor teachers dealing with this kind of stuff
post #8 of 19
Gangs at that young of age?! Aren't there any afterschool activities or something? Sounds like the kids of that school needs it...they're bored if they're forming gangs at that age.
post #9 of 19
guess i am going aganist the grain here, but for boys ignore does not work very well.
They will view ignore as weakness. Unless the school steps up and puts a stop to it, the only other thing that will is a few fights to show he wont back down.

For me the last move my family made, the only way i could get frank and his friends to leave me alone was after i dented a locker with frank;s face.
post #10 of 19
Thread Starter 
unfortunately, it's less boredom and more a product of their local environment regarding the gang-banger stuff The good news is that out of 20 kids, only 5 are actually participating which is around 25% - I told him that if it were an election, he'd still be ahead in the polls I hope that he can ignore them; he says he's been trying, but now that I read him your replies, he wants to try again. Also, he was very impressed about the self-confidence comment - it seems he does worry that the other kids will find out about his not-so-good homelife (his real mom isn't around much , his dad is both physically and emotionally abusive, despite court orders, and his new step-mom is finding out the "dark side" of dad ).
Now. how to build that self-confidence
post #11 of 19
That's tough. I know from experience too. And that age group does not help. Really, self confidence is the best answer in my oppinon. If you feel good about yourself, and don't listen to what other people say, then teasing bullys can't hurt you so much. Or at least they leave you alone because they really are looking for a reaction.

What are your Grandson's tallents? What makes him special? It's not easy, but he needs to focus on what makes him feel good about himself. Even if it's small things at first. I'll use this just as an example: if he's proud of his Mexican and Native American heritage, get into that. Learn about it and don't be afraid to be different. If he can get into a sport or something he enjoys, that's the place to make friends. And then it won't matter so much what the bullies say.

I know I always heard people talking about wanting to be individuals and then they were the first ones running to do what their friends were doing. They sold their identities if you ask me. I think almost everyone gets teased at some point in their childhood, but especially young adulthood when everyone is really trying to figure out who they are. And quite often those who act like they know who they are by being in groups like that, are really the most lost ones. It'll get better with time, though I know that's not always comforting!
post #12 of 19


I agree with that. If anything he has to be proud of, and I do not mean this offensivley, is that his is of a minority, and is smart enough and proud enough of himself to not get caught up in a gang or other things that unfortunatley have become a way of life for many minority groups.

Does he get good grades? What does he want to do when he grows up? What are his aspirations. Just having them is enought to be proud of! Does he draw well? Is he a quick learner?

I think it is rediculous that a child of 12 should have to be confronted at school to choose which gang he or she would want to represent. At that point, I would go straight to the administration with the names of the boys. At least I know locally here that is grounds from being allowed back in public schools. They would be forced to go to another "special" school.

And I cant really say that private school is any better. It is not. . . At least not here. They were the kids throwing parties in high school and getting drunk and doing drugs behind their parents back.

It is hard to feel unwanted and especially when home life is hard, however the important thing is that he knows he can do better. . .

There is always room to get better, and it does not rain every day!
post #13 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by theimp98 View Post
guess i am going aganist the grain here, but for boys ignore does not work very well.
They will view ignore as weakness. Unless the school steps up and puts a stop to it, the only other thing that will is a few fights to show he wont back down.

For me the last move my family made, the only way i could get frank and his friends to leave me alone was after i dented a locker with frank;s face.
Hmm..I've always wondered about boys. Girls are sort of ADD at making fun of others so if they aren't getting attention from the person they're making fun of they'll find someone else.

Does he take Karate or any type of martial art? My brother had issues (though not as bad as your GS) in school and karate helped him understand how to handle bad situations.

Then he can really do some butt-kicking
post #14 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by lunasmom View Post
Does he take Karate or any type of martial art? My brother had issues (though not as bad as your GS) in school and karate helped him understand how to handle bad situations.

Then he can really do some butt-kicking
I was wondering about that too. My Nephew (he's 10) is in Tae-Kwon-Do now and it's really done a lot to help his self esteem. His Instructors teach the kids to respect other people, and not to just go kick someone's butt, but they do learn how too. Actually my step-dad was very much into martial arts as a kid. It became his outlet when he was 'the fat kid.' By the time he graduated high school he looked like a body builder, no lie. My step-brother was the same way. (And he's into Brazilian martial arts at the moment. I just don't remember the name of it exactly.)
post #15 of 19
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MoochNNoodles View Post
I was wondering about that too. My Nephew (he's 10) is in Tae-Kwon-Do now and it's really done a lot to help his self esteem. His Instructors teach the kids to respect other people, and not to just go kick someone's butt, but they do learn how too. Actually my step-dad was very much into martial arts as a kid. It became his outlet when he was 'the fat kid.' By the time he graduated high school he looked like a body builder, no lie. My step-brother was the same way. (And he's into Brazilian martial arts at the moment. I just don't remember the name of it exactly.)
Why didn't I think of that - martial arts (DOKS karate) was what my brain-damaged daughter took! And I checked on the school's website & their after-school program offers it I think that we may had landed on a answer.
I was reading him the reply posts this afternoon and he really wants me to print & mail them to him. I know he wants to get more confidence but doesn't want to seem conceited or anything like that.
His voice is so much chipper & he was telling me jokes after he heard what you all had to say. THANK YOU EVER, EVER SO MUCH!!! He loves TCS and all your kind words and wisdom have such a positive impact
May you all be blessed for taking the time to care & to respond Susan
post #16 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by lunasmom View Post

Then he can really do some butt-kicking
i guess i should say , i got kicked out of high school twice before people thought it was a better idea to leave me alone
post #17 of 19
Unfortunately, gangs are everywhere, and they start at a very young age. And they are very difficult to ignore since they will eventually rule the neighborhood and school unless something is done early on! We have areas that are gang ruled with neutral zones between.

Self confidence will help your grandson, but so will a sense of family and history. Help him find the honor and dignity found in his ancestory.

Good luck!
post #18 of 19
As a kid who was bullied all through middle school I can give you a little bit of advice. (though I'm a girl)

Honestly, I wasn't helped by ignoring them. It made no difference to THEM and they never got tired of making me feel utterly worthless. My sweet loving parents did everything they could to make me feel supported and encouraged and while it did make a difference about who I am today, I've had to have years of therapy to try to get over my bad opinion of myself. Much less, I developed a deep desire to be accepted (because I wasn't).

In eighth grade I was sexually harassed by a few of the boys in my school. It got so bad that I would sob in the car begging not to go to school. Once I was finally forced to tell my parents what was going on (I was too embarrassed to tell them sooner) they set up a meeting with the principal and my homeroom teacher in order to have the situation taken care of.

The best thing you can do here is get involved. Those kids should not be discussing gang things at school, it's just as inappropriate as sexual harrassment. I would go so far as to say those children should be suspended for even mentioning a gang on school property (especially with how young school shooters are becoming these days). I just don't believe bullying should be ignored.

The principal should know what is happening and his teachers too. Not to mention the parents of the other kids.

I do very much agree about Tae Kwon Do. I took that as a child and it gave me something to feel proud of myself for. Learning his heritage will also give him something to make him feel proud of. Part of why I made it through school was my artwork. It gave me something to feel confident about.

Best of luck with your GS, I feel for him so much. Dealing with bullying is very difficult. I'm so sorry my post isn't more encouraging or uplifting! X( My life got SO much better in high school, I had great friends and I loved going to school to see them. My parent's support really helped, too.
post #19 of 19
Quote:
Originally Posted by theimp98 View Post
guess i am going aganist the grain here, but for boys ignore does not work very well.
They will view ignore as weakness. Unless the school steps up and puts a stop to it, the only other thing that will is a few fights to show he wont back down.
i do remember something similar with one of my brothers... there was a kid [i think they were about the same age, as well] always ragging on him, telling him he was 'gonna get him', etc. Noel asked my dad for advice. dad told him, 'if ignoring isn't working, you can try fighting... but make sure that at least that first punch really hurts!' mind you, this was over 30 years ago.
anyway, it worked for Noel - he ended up becoming friends with the kid. like he won his respect, or something.
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