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October 4th, 2010
06:31 AM ET

Bullying 2.0

Were you the kid who got his lunch money taken? Picked on for being picked last in gym class? The kid that everyone said smelled funny? Young Americans say they are being bullied less and less in school, despite rapidly increasing amounts of allegations of cyber bullying which is not limited to social media websites and the internet are popping up across the country. Is physical bullying a thing of the past? Do you have any bullying horror stories you would like to share with us?

C’mon admit it you have either bullied someone or been the victim! So tell us your story how you handled being bullied or why you bullied someone. Drew Griffin will read some of your responses during the 10 o’clock hour of CNN Newsroom.


Filed under: CNN Newsroom • Kyra Phillips
soundoff (99 Responses)
  1. Tim

    I saw news about stop bullie, I am victim for long time I was at Deaf School . I used to live boys dorm. This is worse my life. I never go back to Deaf School for Class Reunion. I did went there for Class Reunion. I dont feel anything about them. I had flashback about Deaf School are abusive. I am deaf father now I have two girls. I have very diffcult my life from that school. I have so many scar in my memory of school. Deaf School never listen me I graduate 1984. I am sad lot of story about my life still struggle. . I am glad I have family here at my house. Thanks God. but How I can stop and against Deaf School.
    FYI I am not good written English, Due to I am use American Sign Language.

    Thanks
    Tim

    October 4, 2010 at 6:54 am |
  2. Melissa

    In a society where many parents (not all) think that everyone else is responsible for raising their kids except them, how can we be suprised by the way kids act today? They need to be taught first at home how to behave responsibly, by not being rude, obnoxious or disrespectful. I think it's sad that we think we need the government to step in and tell us where to draw the lines through laws regarding bullying, etc. What has happened to common sense. Shouldn't paerents be held accountable for their children's actions???

    October 4, 2010 at 6:59 am |
  3. Dan

    I am in my late 40's. I remember the neighborhood kid, when we rode the bus to school would constantly harrass and punch on me.
    Well, one day I got fed up and couldn't take it any more. I made a right fist, and punched him in the stomach as hard as I could. It knocked the wind out of him.
    Needless to say, I was never picked on by him again. He kept his comments and hands to himself.
    I wonder about his security, or lack there of. I retired from the US Navy, and now I have a great job working for the Coast Guard. I live 800 miles from my parents house.
    Him, he still lives next door to his parents, never married, so I wonder about his insecurity.

    October 4, 2010 at 7:36 am |
  4. Joyce Sebian

    For a positive response to bullying you should look at the program: Safe Schools/Healthy Students. Started as a violence prevention program it has the support of US Dept of Ed, Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services, and Dept of Justice.

    Another group with solutions is the Prevention of Hate program- which has a national reach- doing work, has a good personal story and is an amazing guy.

    In the end we have to agree on values of not "stopping bullying" but promoting respect for all and value of school and community connectedness- helping all children feel part of a community in school and in their neighborhoods.

    I'm working to advance a public health approach to children's mental health. According to the CDC study on Adverse Childhood Experiences, when children experience a number of adverse expereiences, it can have lifelong health impact. Instead of looking one child at a time (which is also important) we have to look at children's mental health from a population perspective – when we do, it is profound to see the number of deterimental factors impacting children. Many of them are factors we can influence. This requires a cross sector approach. Our children's well-being doesn't belong to one sector, the schools. We have to ask how each of us can contribute to children's health and well-being across many issues- media, schools, bullying, nutrition, faith, etc.

    October 4, 2010 at 8:03 am |
  5. karen

    My kids were being bullied by there bus driver for two years, the stuff he do to them. he made my one daughter sit on the steps as the bus is moving, not turn the lights on when they get off the bus, punched a kid in the private. Well we as neighbors had enough of it so we went to the school about it, they investagated it but couldnt find enough evidence on him to do anything. He got kicked off another route for the same thing, why is that. He is a big bully. But its not just kids in school its teachers bus drivers that are bullys also but how do we control it when they are supposed to protect our kids from bulling. Ive tried everything. Nothing works.

    October 4, 2010 at 8:52 am |
  6. Bj Short

    In grade 8 i was tripped repeatedly all the way home by a Girl in my class. when I asked her why she told me i had told my best friend she was a s__t. I hadn't of course and when shen found out the truth 2 years later, she apologized.

    October 4, 2010 at 8:57 am |
  7. Jeff

    All of this stuff going on brought back a lot of memories of being harassed and bullied from elementary school through high school cause I was a skinny little kid with a speech impediment. Those were terrible years of dreading going back to school every day and try to cope with the people I knew would bother me...I wouldnt wish it on anyone.

    October 4, 2010 at 8:57 am |
  8. Jess

    Middle school was hell for me... just one of the daily mornings of torment and tears I had a few girls smash eggs on my head in the bus just on the way to school. I am 34 years old now, still havent forgot it. But it was a daily hell there for 3 years because i was a little over weight at the time, but not even near fat. I was somehow a target and had eating disorders for the rest of my life because of those girls. I am more fearful of my child becoming a victim like this than failing grades in school because I have never, ever been able to overcome what they did to my self esteem. It does not exist for me at all

    October 4, 2010 at 8:58 am |
  9. Sheila

    I've been bullied on the job and have watched my friends get bullied as well. Whenever my salary earnings are at a level above what some might see as "acceptable for a black person", a white person, usually female starts up the works to get that salary taken away from me. This has happened to my professional black colleagues as well. It's as if, we shouldn't have it. Whenever people have secret meetings and expect you to know what happened and disciplining you for not knowing, or marching around your work area with their "gang", that's bullying. I guess they did not work out their bullying problems in grade school.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:00 am |
  10. dale shand

    I was a victim of the teen bullies, i wasn't athletic, didnt have girlfriends so they said i was gay. To avoid them i went home during lunch and left school early. Today at 37 years old i still bear the scars of those terrible days as a teen.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:02 am |
  11. Brian Henderson

    Bullying has been around forever.....unless you walked around with your eyes closed.. I am 55 years old and when I was in high school with a graduation class of 500 +, I was a big strong kid, big football jock etc.. I had earned a reputation all the way through school that you don't mess with me but not a bad way. My dad raise me to stand up for the right things, and to also stand up for the weak, and I did.. I had a fair amount of fights and never lost one. I beat up the bad senior linebacker when I was a sophomore the first day of school for picking on a weak nerd. From that point on the weak came and searched me out for protection. It caused me problems socially but I kept to the path of standing up for the weak. I have done that all my life.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:05 am |
  12. Jackie

    My son who is now in high school was bullied many times from elementary to high school. Most events were reported to the school. The school always said that they would do something about it, but they never tell you what if anything was done. When my son got fed up with it and responded he too was expelled from school. I actually moved to move him out of a school district while he was in middle school because it got out of control. In high school my son would tell me of things but would say not to tell because when he sees these same kids outside of the school environment they approach him, point their fingers at him as if they are pointing a gun at him or tell others they are after him. I don't understand why my son was a target, but i do know that no child should be bullied and there has to be something done to stop this. Bullying affects these kids more than those doing the bullying realize.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:06 am |
  13. Anastasia

    My family moved from Moscow to Miami right before I was about to start 3rd grade. That's when the bullying began. Of course i had been teased by my classmates in Moscow but there is a much more "what goes around comes around" attitude over there so I never felt singled out. But now, I was the weird foreign new kid and it seemed like everyone was out to get me. I told my parents about this, and for a while they would just tell me ways to stand up for myself but one day, a girl actually bit me on the school bus and that was the last straw for my parents. They actually went to the school, barged into the main office, and demanded to speak with the principal and the girl's parents IN PERSON. She never bothered me again. I think that is why I was able to handle the bullying that came in middle school and some of high school. I felt like i really was more powerful than any word, comment, or wall post on facebook. By my last year of high school, the kids who used to tease and bully me in middle school, were now really friendly with me and I do no like to hold grudges. People change, and what you said when you were 12 does not define you as a person when you are 18. Because of my own experience, I began to reach out to those kids in my grade who were new, shy, "nerdy", or "weird" because under that label is a person who has been through good and bad times, and has feelings of love, hate, happiness, and anger. Bullies are also people with stories, problems, triumphs, failures, and successes. We are all human, and should treat each other as such.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:11 am |
  14. Brian Henderson

    I would suggest to all kids being bullied that they search out a relationship of support with a figure of strength in their school and explain to them why the are asking for their help because the bullies will usually stop just seeing this relationship and it doesn't have to be anymore than walking through the halls from class to class. But the child should not expect anymore from his protector than that unless his protector offers the friendship to be more than that.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:14 am |
  15. jl K

    as a 7th grader, in brand new clothes, having just moved from a little town of 1800 to a city of 20,000, hearing the words, "Well look what just crawled in off the farm", the thought of dying did not occur to me the thought of ripping her tongue out of her face did however. It continued for about three months until I adapted to the risque dress of the upper class and then transformed into a full fledged hippie and got lost in the tie-dye hip-hugger world of the 60's. We all deal with criticism or bullying in different ways it still affect's me to this day. I get defensive at times or withdraw at other times. but the bitterness tries to rear its ugly head. I did get her back senior year. I took her boyfriend away. She had no date for the prom.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:21 am |
  16. James

    I watched the heart wrenching story about the Father who lost his son at the age of 11 because of bullying. I too was bullied as an 11 year old in school. It went on for over a year when I finally had enough of it.
    One day during a regular confrontation in the washroom I decided to fight back. One of my friends had gone to get a teacher to intervene.
    When the teacher showed up I was the one who got Detention for fighting. I,m 39 years old today and a father of 2 young boys.
    My 8 year old son has already had an issue at school.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:22 am |
  17. G.H.

    I was bullied mercilessly when I was in gradeschool and it continued through middle/highschool. It got "better" after I tried to kill a classmate of mine in 4th grade, but it never fully went away.

    I would encourage all kids who are being bullied to physically fight back. As long as you're underage and don't *actually* kill one of your classmates, your bullying will probably cease and you'll likely not be charged with anything.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:40 am |
  18. Caine

    I remember back in high school when people would just strike up a problem with the outcast if they simply turned the corner and made their way down a hallway. Those bullies would do just about anything verbally to make those they didn't like have a terrible day.

    It always made my skin crawl when I got on the bus in the mornings and knew I'd be stepping back in there for another round of one-sided calling out.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:41 am |
  19. Connie

    As the Rutgers student who was interviewed noted, hate seems to have become a new American value. Sadly, this hate and anger is expressed loudly by our 24/7 media. The worst, however, is the vile hatred spewed forth daily by our country's politicians. When children are surrounded by the adults in their lives constantly demeaning others verbally, what else can we expect. PARENTS ... be examples of tolerance.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:42 am |
  20. Jane kelley

    You seem to be avoiding the fact that the latest bullying suicides were related to perceived or open sexual orientation. Why do you avoid addressing our society's homophobia and how it affects this issue.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:43 am |
  21. Bill G

    I spent 4 years of high school being bullied and had no choice but to put up with it. 40 years later I still remember every one of those people. I have been scarred for life by it and have difficutly in meeting new people or speaking in front of others. I hope that those bullies never had to deal with one of their children being bullied because it is a terrrible way for children and teen to go thru their day in contstant fear that they will be attacked and abused both physically and verbally. The old saying stick and stones will hurt but names will never harm me is totally untrue.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:43 am |
  22. Jake

    I believe that bullying is a normal part of childhood devolpment. I was a kid just like everyone else and was bullied in school as well and I wouldn't change it. It helps you grow up and learn to deal with everyday problems. You deal with issues like this for your entire life and you will always be ridiculed in one way or another. Learning to cope with it at a younger age allows you to grow and be able to accept it. If you stop bullying completely in school whats going to happen when that same kid is 30 and is ridiculed? How will they cope with it?

    October 4, 2010 at 9:44 am |
  23. Tracy

    I was once bullied, but when I was growing up many of us learned how to defend ourselves as long as it was to defend ourselves. Parents today are to easy with their children and do not require alot from their children. This is what makes it easier for children to defy their parents and we as parents then look like the bad guys. We need to go back to how we were brought up. With this being said, I do feel bad for these children today dealing with the bullying issues, but sometimes the lines need to be drawn.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:45 am |
  24. Robert

    Yeah, of course I was bullied in school, but I find the recent anti-bullying frenzy to be a bit scary. It seems like this would be the move to an Orwellian society where we have to get along. In the world of business and foreign policy, it's all about survival of the fittest. We live in a society which has as its basis the value that whoever is the most fittest (ie most prettiest, athletic, richest, the right skin color, etc.) is on top. What we who don't fit in have to learn is how to deal with this. Some of us deal with it through humor, success, religion, or individualism. Bullying in any facet of life is just something that the so called "different" or "weaker" people have to go through. It helps us find our strength. There will always be bullying, whether it be in politics, the courts, foreign policy, and the workplace. Its part of life, and should be taken as such.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:45 am |
  25. Sally

    As a veteran teacher, I would like to tell parents that while there are some schools who are very proactive about bullying, some are not. If your principal, superintendent, and school board aren't on board, teachers are left powerless. There are teachers who stand up to this, but are squashed by poor admin. The only thing those leaders understand is $$$$! If you're not getting anywhere, have a lawyer send a letter to the school. You will get results only if you make them accountable. Follow through-you might save a child from lifelong scars-or worse.
    Join together with other parents and the entire community. Get involved and follow through!!!

    October 4, 2010 at 9:46 am |
  26. Ken

    I'm 28 years old now. I've been deaf most of my life, mainstreamed into public school and was singled out for it. I've gone to both private and public schools and in my experience, the bullying was much worse in public schools, especially in between classes, on the bus, even sometimes in the classrooms themselves when the teacher wasn't looking.

    It really bothered me, being teased for something I had no choice in. I still went to school, learned to ignore how it hurt me over a long period of time, learned to just read the material from the books instead of participating in classroom activities or discussions. I wanted to have nothing to do with society or the people at school. I started skipping classes in high school, I only showed up on test days. I didn't care about passing or failing. I just wanted to show up, do the test, take the C and leave. I was treated better at work, a fast food joint, where I was respected and worked my way up to being a Manager. My self esteem grew far more in that place of work than It ever had while I was in school.

    Basically, I think the education system today is just an massive farm for working parents to send their kids to so they don't have to deal with their children and get a break from them / go to work.

    Honestly, it's amazing I didn't lash out irrationally like I see kids do today. You know, when Columbine happened, I was maybe in the 10th grade. A little, small part of myself actually cheered for those guys even though on some level deep down, I was horrified at myself for wishing that kind of harm on innocent bystanders.

    But that's what bullying does - you either become really sensitive and care about what people do or say to you, that you'll lash out irrationally. Or, alternatively, you'll become socially withdrawn and emotionally numb. It affects your relationships later on in life and leaves one incapable of forming lasting, nurturing relationships with others out of that fear of attachment.

    I just learned to deal with it. Life is suffering, suffering is attachment, attachment is loss, all things become lost. So, screw the bullies. They'll get theirs.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:46 am |
  27. jl K

    When I had children of my own if they were teased or bullied I would invite the other child and their family over to the house. Sometimes it ended in friendship sometimes just an understanding that, that kind of behavior would not be tolerated. One single parent mom had to be convinced by a visit from the local police. When she went to jail for attacking the officer I befriended the young boy and the bulling never happened again. As parents we need to listen and respond to our children that is our most important job. Money can buy them lots of things. Maybe that is why we have 20 year old 12 year olds.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:47 am |
  28. Nick Alaga

    When are we going to recognize the connection to bullying and the tactics of the extreme right? You say the kids have to "learn this from somewhere"; well if posters of our President depicted as Hitler, a Witch Doctor, or the Joker, and showing up to rallies carrying a gun aren't perfect examples of bullying, I don't know what are.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:47 am |
  29. mike jones

    I was bullied for many of my early years but One day I took extreme action against my bully which sent his parents to my house and bruises on his face. After that incident he tried to be my friend... I dont think i turned into a bully (even though I was told I was) after that but I did treat people differently. didnt care for feeling so much. I think that bullying is natural for children who are strong and is natural for children who are weak. Parents have the job of communicating and examining their children and even giving them the answer to the bullying problem. for those want to stop being bullied they should get courage and strength. for those who want to stop bullying needs to find another outlet for anger

    October 4, 2010 at 9:47 am |
  30. Deborah

    I was a red head who endured many names and add a farm daughter brought on more mean names. My early years in school were not easy and I hated my haircolor, I became very angry. When I thought kids were the worst I worked with a couple of ladies in my early 20's and had to endure more taunts of,'I would rather be dead than red on the head." I am 44 and I still hear the names and withdraw from bully's to this day.
    My heart goes out to the many children that are singled out for what makes them unique and special, not specially handicapped!

    October 4, 2010 at 9:47 am |
  31. Joan Weytze

    Bullying starts in childhood, but doesn't end there. Bullies tend to know how to "handle" the adults around them, who consider the bullies to be fine human beings with leadership potential. That's why complaints to teachers and principals often go unheeded. The bullies know how to handle themselves socially, while the people who get bullied are usually socially awkward and don't know how to form powerful alliances. It isn't surprising that many of the bullies grow up to be managers and supervisors, and the abuse continues in the workplace.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:47 am |
  32. Maryjeanne

    Bullying stories are heartbreaking. My daughter was bullied on her school bus in 8th grade, a difficult time for teens self-image etc. She was a little heavy-set and was laughed at, and called a cartoon-characters name who was a huge monster. I was unaware until finally she came home in tears. I personally went to the bullier's home and he slammed the door in my face before I could even finish a sentence. So I went to the school principal; she literally jumped up out of her chair, went and pulled him out of his class; she not only suspended him for a week, but suspended him off the bus for a month ! To this day, I THANK HER IN MY HEART..and am extremely grateful . He NEVER spoke to my daughter again. FYI, my daughter has high-functioning autism, she didn't need this......Parents, pay attention, our children are a gift and are precious......

    October 4, 2010 at 9:47 am |
  33. workbullying

    Bullying also extends to the workplace, particularly in Europe (France, Switzerland etc.), so you need to learn the tools at an early age to prepare for the future. Many north American foreign workers in Europe are often shocked by this if not informed.

    Google "mobbing" in Europe; many chat forums covering the topic including organizations and groups to help employees cope and even take legal action since employers don't always have internal policies against this workplace behavior.

    It needs to be tackled head on, consistently and with strength; it can be time consuming and exhausting, but it must be battled... Good luck to all those who deal with it daily at school and even in the workplace.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:47 am |
  34. Mary J

    My daughter at 15 committed suicide in 1993. A coach/teacher had bullied her in sports. It also lead to fellow players picking on her. She was a excellent ball player and the coach felt she could maker her upset to make her play harder by telling her, "you are no one", "you are nobody", "you are nothing". After hearing at practices and games over and over she attempted suicide in 8th grade, counseling lead to the coach, and school had to furnish a psychologist. Even though the school had to furnish the psychologist and he also took it back to the coach, she was never disciplined and in 2010 is still there. But for my daughter the damage had been done. She committed suicide and in her note she wrote.."I am nobody". "I am nothing", " I am no one"

    October 4, 2010 at 9:50 am |
  35. Mary Jaques

    My daughter was a victim of bullying in middle school. She was struck in the face by a male student on the bus. Fortunately for her the bus driver was supportive. She dropped my crying daughter off at the elementary school where I was picking up my son. I had her call the superintendent 's voice mail. I am sure that hearing a demonstrably upset girl leave him a message was very helpful to prompt and personal action. I think this prompted the administration at the middle school to swiftly meet with the bully's parents. He was suspended from school for three days and banned from the bus transport for a month. This sent an immediate message to all students at school and on the bus that this behavior was not acceptable. I wonder if more children could directly report that it would make harder for people to depersonalize the feelings of the victims by saying "kids will be kids".

    October 4, 2010 at 9:50 am |
  36. Dale

    I was bullied for over five years. I even had a knife put to my throat. I thought about suicide too. I see your stories and I am angered by the fact that all I hear are platitudes. What about accountability? Where are the parents of these bullies? Johnathan Kellerman says that the reason we have an epidemic of this in this country is because the parents of bullys give their children permission to act out and be violent. Can you get him on the air to discuss this please. Can you get the parents of these bullys on the air.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:50 am |
  37. Patricia (The lifeteller Poet) Robinson

    Bullying should be a crime, The bad part this bullying thing goes way pass children. It happening to older people too. I just moved into an apt. and this 20 + girl seems to think she can say and do anything to me, its a form of bullying and it brings back up the reason I dropped out of school.
    B/C I was fat, no hair, Gay it all went hand and hand in those days. I cant believe this is happening to me at 62 years old there should be a law against it. I should be able to live in peace I live in North Myrtle Beach, SC
    and Im being bullied for what I dont know, she sits on the steps of her apt. and makes my entering uncomfortable, she start them into not speaking, and saying stupid things to me and about me. please can you help me it should be a crime against the law..Im a poet here everyone knows me. I want to live my life, Ive been through enough with my own hand. Im a changed person ex-addict she is messing with 10 yrs of sobriety

    October 4, 2010 at 9:51 am |
  38. MACDONALDBANK1

    The Right Honourable Prime Minister of Canada Jean Chretien told the Vatican that there was to be no cross erected over the Canadian Parliament buildings figuratively speaking; when the Pope demanded the Prime Minister go against gay rights. An Alberta bishop had the audacity to say that The Canadian Prime Minister would go to hell for going against the church. Such outrageous evil threats. The Right Honourable Prime Minister in return; basically told the Pope to go to Hell! The Honourable Irwin Cotler, Canadian Minister of Justice, stood for equal rights for the gay community. With reference to protecting the children: The Honourable Hedy Fry, member of the Canadian Liberal Parliament, who happens to be a doctor who delivered many babies; spoke eloquently to defend the rights of babies being born and stated that she was in fact defending their rights by speaking on behalf of equal rights for the children and youth of the future - defending their integrity and dignity.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:51 am |
  39. Kristen

    I was bullied throughout my entire school years, from first grade till about 11th grade. I was the quiet fat girl with from a single parent home and that seemed to make every think they had the right to make me feel bad about myself. And it wasn't just the kids, there were teachers and other grown in the schools administrators building that did things or let them do things to me. And it only stopped when my family moved to another state and we ended up in a town where single families were the norm.
    I spent years trying not eat, years in a depression, I've been to mental hospitals because I cut myself over the way treated me. I know what it's like to get bullied to point where you don't want to get up in the morning. I still don't know how I survived this long.
    I'm still afraid to deal with people my own age. I can only go to college online because I am still afraid of the face to face contact and what might happen.
    But watching makes me sad, but I am glad people are finally taking this serious. Hopefully by the time I have kids I wont have to worry about them getting bullied.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:51 am |
  40. MACDONALDBANK1

    To think of Matthew Shepard choking on his own blood after being savagely beaten; virtually sanctioned by the church is evil beyond comprehension; yet is the same as boys being bullied into suicide; most likely being supported by the bullies parents’ religious cults. Bigotry and hatemongering against gays should be banned.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:51 am |
  41. MACDONALDBANK1

    It is a sometimes rare occurrence to fall in Love and to hold that person in your heart and be loved in return ... it is something that should be celebrated! If it is between two guys or girls all the better. It takes even more courage to defend that LOVE!

    October 4, 2010 at 9:52 am |
  42. Neil McCumber

    I lived in a smal town in Wisconson. When I was 11 yrs old I was bulied by this kid for quite some time. I also lived in feer that this kid was going to hurt me bad. I didn't want go to scool because of that feer. I don't remember telling my folks about it. One day I invited him and his buddy to meet me in the tobaco shed at noon. We met, we fought. We both had black eyes but I returned to school that afternoon and he didn't. I was proud of that. My feer was gone and we became good friends and remain so. I'm 75 ,But I haven,t forgotten that FEER.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:53 am |
  43. Sarah

    I had a girl pick on me from 6th grade to graduation. She lived in my neighborhood, so there were confrontations walking home. Neither the middle nor high schools did anything but have us into the principal's office to "talk" which never helped. Finally involved police when a nasty threatening letter was left in my locker and she tried to provoke me at a football game. I was never scared, just angry.I see her around now, she hasn't changed. But I laugh, I'm over it. Sadly, some kids aren't so lucky.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:53 am |
  44. Sally

    Sorry for posting twice, but I have seen so much of this!
    Bullies are bullies because they get away with it. They continue to be bullies as adults. Studies have shown that most bullies do not have a poor home life, have not been bullied by others, etc. They are just plain mean, controlling people. Parents-be open to info about your child-they might be the problem. As a teacher, I generally get two responses from parents: 1. Thank you so much for telling me!!! This is not acceptable in our family, I will.....(and they follow through.) 2. Well, who else was doing it? Are they getting punished, too? Did you actually see my some/daughter do this? (Which parents do you think are raising bullies?) Which kind of parent are you?

    October 4, 2010 at 9:54 am |
  45. sean

    as a gay man, it is so saddening to watch the news media continue and perpetuate the homophobia that is at the root of the recent suicides by removing any discussion of the struggles of young gay people specifically and generalizing the discussion to an abstraction of bullying.

    I don't disagree that bullying is terrible whenever it happens, but the reason that young people are more likely to commit suicide when they are bullied for being gay is that the bully is simply reflecting the same messages they get from many other places in society, if not their family at home.

    So if CNN really wants to cover the recent cases of suicides by young men, then they need to not just talk about bullying devoid of any discussion of the homophobia in the larger society.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:55 am |
  46. Big Bear

    People, people, stop complain! 'I was this... He did that...' That not going to do anything. How about ask your kid, talk to him/her and if something is start to happen – act. Bullying is not start over night, is progressing over long period of time, and you shut see same indication. But most people are so busy with their lives they got no time for kids... and then they cry

    October 4, 2010 at 9:55 am |
  47. Jeanette Burdett

    Where are the parents, teachers and bus drivers.....Children, pre-teens, teenagers all are young and require adult supervision....I know you can't watch all 24/7. . I do believer that if you are paying attention and engaged with your children, students and riders you would be able to notice these type behaviors.

    Also some T.V. movies, video games are not sending poor messagess with regard to behaviors.

    What's on the internet is out of control. Both for adults and children.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:55 am |
  48. Dale

    To Brian Henderson: Thank you for standing up for others. I bet you are a good friend.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:56 am |
  49. Chris Lantzy

    A few years ago my son was in 5th grade at the William Henry School in Dover, DE. He was teased by his phys ed. teacher because he could not skip. My son has asperger's which makes him a little uncoordinated. The teacher and kids teased him until he was squatting on the floor crying. After that he would throw-up almost every morning before school. When I went to the school to discuss what happened, they did nothing. They did however send us a notice that he had be coming to school late too many times. It was due to him getting sick from the incident. The next year he was beat up in the cafeteria by a bully. The bully was arrested and out of school for a couple weeks. We were led to believe that he would not be allowed back in the same school, but we found out later that he was back in the same school and in contact with our son for the rest of the school year.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:57 am |
  50. Lyn

    My son has always been big and strong for his age, but very mellow. He just wanted to learn and meet friends.
    Every school we tried, public and private, there was always some insecure person that wanted to start a fight. At the public schools, even gangs came after him, stole his things, jumped him in the restroom, because he was big and did not want to "join up" or fight. We now school online and meet people through home school networks, and it's hard. It would have been nice for him to go to school and get all those benefits.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:57 am |
  51. Michael

    I was bully all through 1st grade through 12th grade due to me being (different) gay. I remember asking my mother to help stop this and meeting the bus. I wish the schools and parents have tools to help with this topic. I do believe being bully happens to all kids regardless, but there are some students that just take it a step further. This is where it has to stop. I would recomend a class educating students about all walks of life to be part of the lesson plan in all schools. I also think this video of the Rutgers Student could happen to anyone either straight or gay. People need to realized that could have been them on that tape.It's all fun and games until someone get's hurt.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:58 am |
  52. Lizabeth

    I want to ask a question of someone, if you read this email. This is a question for the boy/young man(???) in junior high, some 30 + years ago, who apparently had a girl sidetrack me, to go to her locker, then, when we got back to the table, my teen magazine was closed, and when I opened it back to the page I was on, 'he' had written "ugly dog face".
    You know I would have had proof of this evil thing to show a teacher ,or anyone, but by that time I was so 'used' to being harassed, pushed around, chased,that there was no way I was going to actually tell another person, parent, teacher or otherwise, that this vile thing had happened!
    The scars are still there, no, not scars, scars don't hurt, the wounds never really closed. Besides, I had my tonsils and adenoids taken out when I was twelve because some boy said he could hear me breathing behind him, in class. That was why I was the scapegoat .(as my teacher put it)
    What can people do? Perhaps put electronic wires on their children for a week, and yes change the laws, but who can, or will teach the bullies love, kindness and goodness?
    PS
    It wouldn't take a week to get enough proof of bullying.
    Liz

    October 4, 2010 at 9:58 am |
  53. chuck mccune

    i teach my 3 yr old daughter self defense. all parents of children suseptible to bullying should enrole their children in martial arts programs. it gives them confidence and avoidance skills. i have 3 children and when bullying of my then 7 year old son by an older child, i demanded a meeting with all the parents with the school principal, informed everyone that my sons had martial arts training, and gave my children permission to strike back in the future, including both my sons on one bully, if the school and the bully's parents were not going to put a stop to it, even if the school diciplined them they would not be in trouble with me. i also told the bully and his parents that i would report it to the district attorney if it happened again. it never did. years later i ran into the bully and he was actually doing well and without the gangsta posturing in previous years. parents, take charge of the situation, don't leave it up to the school administration.

    October 4, 2010 at 9:58 am |
  54. Rick in Bend,Oregon.

    I was raised in Hawaii. I am white and was known as a Haoli. Well to give you an idea how bullying affected My schooling the last day of school was known as "KILL HAOLI DAY"! My brothers and I didn't attend the last day of school. And the bully's didn't stop there it went on all year long! I think most of it was brought on by the fact that most of the bully's had flaws and they figure if their on the attack no one will attack them! and then there's peer pressure and not to forget how the bully's are treated by their parents. But I haven't been back to Hawaii in decades. I hope the kids over there have got it better than We had it in the 60's and 70's!

    October 4, 2010 at 9:59 am |
  55. Ann

    I am now in my 60's, and, after many years of therapy, have realized that it was my brother that was the bully. We were in the same grade in a small town all through our school years and his friends took part in it. He was the "stud" – the girls liked him and the boys followed his lead. I couldn't wait to graduate so I could leave home and I did. Three years later I attempted suicide and became further estranged from my family. I still couldn't recognize what my fear of going home was. At that time the mantra was "sticks and stones ................etc". I have always had a lot of rage toward him, but, now that I have identified the source of that rage, I am a lot calmer when around him at family functions, although I am tempted to yell at him – I don't think he even realizes what he did and is continuing to do.

    October 4, 2010 at 10:00 am |
  56. William

    1995-1996 was hard for this "husky" 6th grader. While in middle school, the trip to and from school was HARD! I was HORRIBLY teased for a comment I made about candy. And while I was certainly not the fattest kid at school, I was also not the skinniest either (I like to think "average" for the non-athletic types). For me, it was the journey on the school bus that made school horrible THOUGH I will admit that I had often thought the problem would carry over into my classrooms.

    I had a jar of mayo tossed out at me over this same comment. I sat in one spot only because I was afraid of going to any other seat for the horror some of the kids brought on. To make matters worse, I had a bully from the eighth grade who had siblings in both the 7th and 6th grade too. I even went as far as to voice my concern to the bus driver (who witnessed all of the encounters), but to no avail (should have had her job for that). I will NEVER forget my bully's name, her face, or how she made me feel.

    (Ironic Twist: A couple of the bully's lacky's attended my high school and did not remember me. Two were high school dropouts, and some have since asked to be my Facebook friends. Some are struggling now. I was even matriculated with one in college, but she dropped out the first year [she remembered me, but forgot her middle school actions, and wondered why I had a hard time liking her]. FAIL!)

    As an adult, I realize how STRONG of an individual I (or anyone who has been bullied) had to be because it was a HELLUVA of a year. And there were several times I was offered a way out, but I would have NEVER considered killing them or myself. There is a new generation of kids here (even speaking from a 25 y.o. life) that seem to think the alternative is all or nothing. We are losing them. And as a father of a four y.o., I'm concerned about the messages he is set to receive from this world. I realize I have to be twice as strong and hopefully twice as effective. NO one should be bullied, but more importantly, NO one should feel that suicide is the way out...

    October 4, 2010 at 10:00 am |
  57. Melanie

    I was knowen as the fat one. I went a small elm / jr. high school. I didn't have any friends, they always called names and as i got older, they got older, the names got worse, and continued into high but, it was as bad.

    October 4, 2010 at 10:02 am |
  58. FlGirl

    My son was cited for bullying a classmate last year. He was ten at the time. We were definitely shocked. Never could we have imagined our son would be mean to anyone! He was disciplined at school (they have a zero bullying policy) and we put an end to it at home. We had him research bullying and the affects on those who are bullied. He was overwhelmed to find out how deeply hurt children are from bullying. He read several articles on children who had gone as far as suicide, children his age. He never really understood how powerful words can be or their consequences. He was very embarrassed by what he had done. Still, together we made cookies and brought them over to the other boy's parents. My son apologized to them and promised them he would respect their son. The boy's dad didn't go easy on him, but he forgave him and they shook hands.
    What my son did was wrong, but he had to own up to the school, the boy's parents and his own. Our children know the only behavior that is rewarded is good behavior.

    October 4, 2010 at 10:06 am |
  59. Kathy, Texas

    Bullying is an ADULT problem, not a child. I'm over 45. I still remember watching my childhood friends being bullied by their parents and older siblings. My older brothers were bullied for being smart. I was bullied for being their sister who also made good grades. I quit my last three nursing jobs because the bullies [not administration] dictated patient assignments; work schedules; etc. I leaving the profession I love because I'm tired of trying to make a stand against professional bullies. Take a real look at those who are suppose to be the most caring professionals; community role models; caring about our families with healthcare needs; and who are raising their own children to be bullies. Bullying can be stopped when the multi-billion dollar US healthcare corporations STOP rewarding and supporting bullying in the workplace.

    October 4, 2010 at 10:10 am |
  60. keshia banks

    I understand the whole stop bullying movement but I think the suicide rate of young people is the real issue here. School has never been easy for any of us, im sure, but the epidemic now is that these kids don't have the strength to get through these menial experiencing years or use the negativity they get from others to push them to greater things. Self esteem workshops would prove more progress than bullying laws. Kids now a days use suicide as a way to escape. Its our job to educate them and show compassion. Let them know how special they are to us and the world and that death is permanent, not just a temporary resolution that you can come back from.

    October 4, 2010 at 10:10 am |
  61. April

    When I was in high school I was bulled by eight individuals who would gang up on me at once. They would surround me, punch and kick me from behind. When I saw any of them alone, they would avoid me and never confront me.

    I stood up to them but I also never told anyone what was happening, not even my parents. When a teacher saw anything, the individual would be suppened for a day or two but that would only make things worse for me when they came back to school.

    I urge anyone being bullied to talk to someone. Never try to handle to situation alone, you are not alone. I also urge schools to rethink how to handle the situation. suppending someone only delays the torture.

    October 4, 2010 at 10:16 am |
  62. Bobby Brown

    I was bullied almost daily from about 3rd grade until my junior year in high school.(Theattacks didn't stop over the summer either.) The bullying usually took the form of physical attacks but sometimes the attacks were verbal.
    I hated violence and believed that it was wrong to fight. I would go to class day after day and just endure the attacks without fighting back, without reporting the attacks to teachers (for fear that that would bring on more attacks) and though my parents were aware of some of my bullying issues their approach to the problem was to insist that I fight back. It wasn't that I couldn't fight back. I just had a strong conviction that fighting was wrong under all circumstances.
    Looking back at those days (and at the risk of sounding like I am justifying the attacks) I believe that a contributing factor to my problems was an undiagnosed case of Asperger's Syndrome a form of autism.(To clarify, I have never been tested for autism. This is a self-diagnosis based upon my experience in the medical field.) For some reason people often attack people who are different from them.
    The last day of physical attacks happened during a gym class. My main nemisis pushed me one time too many and I decided for the first time in my life to fight back. We both ended up in detention for about three days but I spent the rest of my high school time without so much as an attack.

    I still despise violence but now I see that it is perfectly OK to defend yourself if you are attacked.
    I appreciate that CNN is bringing the bullying issue to the foreground!
    (Next up: Let's tackle the extreme bias against minorities in the corrections system here in the United States!)

    October 4, 2010 at 10:17 am |
  63. G.W. Texas

    My 12 year son has been bullied for a couple years now, and I have attempted to intervien several times, but it makes it worse for the child.
    So what do we as a parent do for our child? They are very strict about fighting in our school district.. and my son feels like he has no choice but to take the abuse!! The sad thing is that the only thing these kids can find to bully him about is the fact that he has asthma!!
    I try to teach him that it isnt a disability, and that he can do anything... and he has always played baseball and football, and these kids think it is really funny to make fun of him because of the way he breathes, or the fact that sometimes he has a hard time breathing!!!
    What is wrong with these children?? He tells me that it doesnt bother him anymore, but some days I can see the pain in his eyes... and I try to build him up as much as I can at home... I pray every day that it is enough...

    October 4, 2010 at 10:17 am |
  64. Ron

    As a child when I moved to a new town, I discovered that some of the kids were in charge or thought they were. They were good kids but also bullies who picked on others.

    I didn't take kindly to this so I fought back getting in a lot of fights. Didn't win many but I got enough respect that I became friends with them along with the other kids who didn't bully. One of the bullies said the reason we became friends was because they got tired of beating up on me. Plus I had a secret weapon. If they didn't have me surrounded I found I could outrun them and there was no way they could catch me.

    Maybe this was a part of growing up and made some of us stronger but for others it was misery. Things did mellow out for the most part. Sometimes you have to stick up for yourself and fight back..

    October 4, 2010 at 10:27 am |
  65. Jacqueline Goldman

    So far, your reports on bullying have been mostly about students who bully,and their victims. There is another kind of bullying that occurs, and is very destructive, sometimes leading to an OK for students to join in. I'm talking about teachers who belittle a student in front of the whole class. It happens, and it isn't taken as a joke by the recipient. The teen years are sensitive years, but so are all the other years, beginning with the very early school years. I was a quiet, mostly shy, kid, and I still carry a mental scar from kindergarten, dealt by a teacher. Every now and then something causes it to surface. Later, I became a teacher .I hope I never caused any of my students to carry around an old scarlike that. I am 79 years old, and now teach adults.

    October 4, 2010 at 10:29 am |
  66. Dave Fielder

    Growing up I was always a “Bigger” kid. I was a good athlete, well liked by teachers and other parents and naturally bright. In the first grade I experienced my first memory of bullying. There was a small Vietnamese student by the name of We who was targeted by other students simply because he was different. He spoke little English, he was small and admittedly he just didn’t fit into our Catholic school profile. It infuriated me, even as a first grader that We was picked on for no reason at all. I made it my mission to protect him. We ate lunch together, we played the same recess games and we were by each others side every school day. In the 4th grade I moved to another city and went to public school. I never saw We again. However, the idea of protecting those who were being bullied never left me. In middle school I was the biggest kid with the smallest friends. In High School I was the Quarterback who hung out with the swim team and the church goers who were singled out for no good reason. It simply felt right to stick up for those who were being picked on and to not let the bullies “win”. I did get in fights, I was suspended for fighting but I was fighting the good fight. It helped that my parents knew what was going on and they knew my disposition for protecting those being bullied. If I got in trouble for defending someone my parents backed me up and stood behind me. I was in a unique situation to make a difference. It was not measured by academic standards and there was no award for protecting the bullied kids. However, I will tell you this; above and beyond all my athletic and scholastic accolades I have the satisfaction of knowing I protected the innocent and defenseless. I would encourage every kid out there to stand up for one kid that you feel is being bullied. It will make a life long difference. Dave

    October 4, 2010 at 10:34 am |
  67. J. Irons, Bx., NY

    Look! When your child is bullied, let them do as I did. My daughter wore bifocal glasses and braces, although still nice looking, I dressed her well and she had a nice frame, but the children picked on her calling her four-eyes, and steel mouth. I said to my daughter, "Look at each child to see if they have some kind of deformity, or an unkempt outfit, etc., and other things such as big ears, ugly, raggedy clothes, etc., and snap on them accordingly. My daughter told me, "Mommy!" I did what you said once to each child, and nobody bothered me anymore. Amazingly, everybody became friends again. Unbelievable!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    October 4, 2010 at 10:43 am |
  68. J. Irons, Bx., NY

    I remember in the third grade, yes, third grade, this big girl used to pull my ribbons off my hair, everytime we were on line. I was so scared of her because she was truly big. Oh boy! One day she did it again and irked me so badly that I jumped on her and beat her up so bad. I never remembered beating her up. I heard my teacher call my name out so loud, three times before I stopped attacking her and all I remembered was being out of breath. My first and last fight I ever had in my entire life.

    October 4, 2010 at 10:53 am |
  69. Kimberly

    I have Tourette Syndrome and as a kid I was bullied. From 4th grade till high school, I was bullied not only by other students but teachers too. The teachers were so mad at me because they had to deal with me & my tics. They didn't like having me in their classes and when I was bullied in their classes, they never did a thing to stop it.

    Bulling has long standing effects on children. Even when the child gets away from the bully their self esteem is shot. Mine was. I had terrible issues with myself all through my teen years and into my early 20's. I did think of taking my own life, many times, but I was to scared to do so. I also had a great family life, although I had no friends and spent most of my time in my room.

    In high school, because of my low self esteem, I was bullied something awful. By then my Touretts were under control, but the vicousness of the attacks grew. I remember in tenth grade after being threatened in class by another girl in front of my teacher and that teacher not doing anything about it, I skipped class to get away from that and got caught. I told the Dean of Students what was going on & she told me, after she gave me dentention, that she would talk to those involved & it would never happen again. Well, she didn't and they conituned to bully me. I ended up withdrawing from this public HS and enrolled into a college adult HS program. I was a very lost soul for the rest of my teen years. I came out of the bulling on the better end in my early 20's. I realized that I had much to give to others & had a very wonderful life.

    I am now 37. I have a very hard time hearing about these kids who are taking their lives. I understand how they are feeling. I believe that the teachers need to be more proactive in their students lives. They see this on a daily basis. Something needs to change. It needs to start with the schools.

    October 4, 2010 at 10:53 am |
  70. Mary Taylor

    When I was in the 10th grade, my parents moved to Utah, I attended the local public school. I was taller than the other girls and some of the senior boys started taunting me and calling me “amazon”. They would yell it down the halls as I went from one class to another. Eventually the boys in my class started picking up the refrain. Amazon! Here comes the Amazon. They would race to get outside my class so they could yell it again. It got so bad that my parents finally had me transfer to a private school (that we could not really afford) and the bullying ended.
    Parents need to look at the example they are setting. When I see the media showing clips of people at political rallies yelling "Communist" and "Hitler" and carrying signs depicting our president as the Joker or a witch doctor, it reminds me of my high school experience and I have to wonder if their child is a bully too.

    October 4, 2010 at 11:03 am |
  71. Fayebee

    I was bullied by the tomboy GIRLS in my grade school! Yet, **I** was the one who was made to feel guilty! It's always angered me to death that bullying was tolerated ANYWHERE! As long as our society labels bullies as the cool touch guys, or thinks they're cute because they are strong, our society is nothing but a bunch of blind fools.

    Any child who cries themselves to sleep at night because another child hurts their feelings...for WHAT EVER reason... is bad enough... But! If that child commits suicide over it, every teacher, bully or bully promoter should be held responsible! YOU are a murderer.

    October 4, 2010 at 11:18 am |
  72. Doreen

    I have triplet daughters when the were in the 3rd and 4th grade, they were bullied by this same girls. She would smack them in the face,elbow them in the hallway, stab them with a pencil, the final straw was when she pants my daughter down to her ankles on the soccer field, each time we would talk to the principal, she would alway make a comment about "oh look at the triplets". I would complain and complain to this principal and everytime he would always refer to it as well this is just school yard stuff I was so angry I call the District and told them i was going to take them and the parents to court. And they still did nothing We finally got our girls enrolled into tikwondo, we informed the principal that self defence is our best defence at this point, since he and the district has done nothing, and that we were going to instruct our girls to defend themselfs when someone lays a hand on them no matter what and if they got suspended so be it, we had to encourage our girls to protect themself since the principal was not going to get involved. What a shame that we had to teach our girls how to verbally and physically protect themselfs. The schools do not want to get involved at least the Bellingham school did not. Now kids are taking there own life because the people in charge of keeping our kids safe are failing them. SHAME ON THE SCHOOL PRINCIABLE, AND THE DISTRICTS.

    October 4, 2010 at 11:40 am |
  73. Melissa C.

    You can't *stop* bullying; it's human nature to fear (and therefore lash out) at anyone who is "different" in some significant way. I know what I'm talking about because I was severely bullied in elementary school; not physically, but emotionally (taunts, name-calling, etc.) The teachers were told, of course, but couldn't do anything unless they actually *witnessed* the bullying; and of course none of the perpetrators were stupid enough to pull anything where a teacher could see/hear. As for my parents, their response was to keep telling me to try to "fit in"; "if you don't stick out like the proverbial sore thumb, they won't pick on you" etc etc. As you might expect, that got me nowhere; the other children had already, so to speak, classified me in their worldview, and any attempts by me to break out of that role were seen as laughable, exposing me to even more ridicule. As I got older, I realized I could either keep trying to fit in, keep banging my head against the proverbial wall, and be miserable, or I could say, the h- with what everyone thinks, I'll just be me and if that means having little or no social life, so be it. We need to teach kids to accept that they won't always be liked/accepted, and that they *can* function, live, without that, that they have value in and of themselves. Essentially, we don't need anti-bullying education in our schools so much as we need suicide prevention education.

    October 4, 2010 at 12:04 pm |
  74. Mary

    Bullying exists in every school in the US. There are many degrees of bullying from verbal to physical. The problem is a lack of consideration and respect we teach our kids to have. Some parents require their kids to respect them, but they don't respect their kids. Some parents close their ears and eyes because they are too tired or because they don't know better. Being kind and respectful of everyone around you is lost in American Society. It must be taught in actions and words and deeds by adults, for the growing epidemic of bullying to subside. Insecurity that creates bullies can easily be remedied by parents loving their kids enough to tirelessly teach, listen, guide and sacrifice time for them. Parenting, that thankless, payless job has become extinct and replaced with unrelated strangers that are supposed to teach your kid about life, in addition to math and science, and the internet which replaces sitting down and talking to your kid, and enough activities to collapse even the strongest of Harvard graduates. Be real people. If you see your kid is being bullied, take the time to work on it every day, tell him you love him, read and educate yourself and him, tell the school, tell the kids parents, and tell the kid who is bullying you know it. Be ready to spend the time, and stand your ground with the angry parents who are in denial, and angry because they don't want to deal with any more problems, and stay the course with the schools, that are in even more denial than the parents. Encourage your child by letting them know that there are still a few nice kids around and to search them out. One friend can change everything for a kid. In the meantime, be your kids best friend, protect them. and love love love them.

    October 4, 2010 at 12:14 pm |
  75. Dave

    I read the responses to your canvas of the bullying issue. Replies spread across the spectrum from perpetrators to victims. Yes, I was one of those victims in elementary, junior and high school. I was an easy target (short, skinny, wore glasses since 1st grade). And although I didn’t realize my gay orientation until adulthood, I was a beacon for ridicule, taunts, intimidation and physical, psychological and emotional abuse: All the components of domestic violence victims.

    The abuse occurred in low-supervision areas: school bus, hallways (books dumped out of my arms), boy’s bathrooms (peer pressure), gym locker rooms (nicknames and ridicule for under-performing), and the playground (taunts and alienation). It continued into my adult Air Force career: I was continually reminded that I didn’t measure up to “the norm.” Adults can be more sophisticated with their insidious bullying (i.e., the “religious” bullies who take advantage of grieving families).

    The result of this bullying was my desire to champion and help other children and youth. I earned a bachelor’s in psychology and a master’s in school counseling. That worthy life’s work isn’t void of shadows, though – a strong aversion to risk-taking; and anxiety and panic-attack nightmares of being discovered, exposed or ridiculed in public places.

    Some responses defended the experience in order to teach youth “how to cope with life”, “survival of the fittest” and “to learn to find their strength.” All it taught me were dysfunctional techniques: fight or flight; the value of Power & Control (physically, socially, economically); and equalizers (weapons, etc). Research suggests that abuse victims continue in the role or become perpetrators–resorting to violence.

    Children and youth need to be taught empathy, social and coping skills to deal with stress, challenges and transitions. The “sink or swim” philosophy is a cop-out for the incompetent and unskilled poor role models. We need to be the scaffolding that supports our youth as they learn—then gradually removing the supports, piece by piece, as they test their wings and fly. Not crash…in suicide and destruction.

    October 4, 2010 at 12:53 pm |
  76. nancy

    I am the mother of 15 year old in middle school, It is heartbreaking what he endures just to go to school, I was one of those mothers that rushed in to tell the school what was going on what a joke makes it so much worse ..I am not allowed to say anything any more because he told me how the school handles this problem they just make it worse, I have had him talking to a therapist for a while because he feels hopeless and this problem will never go away he does not see any light at the end of the tunnel. I really can not blame the schools they really have never experienced this many mean and cruel children where they come in gangs and single out only 1 kid at a time almost like gangs are in the schools now who wants to tell on a gang member? not many kids do leaves them scared. So for the moment the dr. put him on some meds so he wont be so depressed so I guess he can just cope. So for a mother my heart is broke I worry about him so much and He has not been on the meds. for that long what about the side affects? But when your kid tells you it is not worth living anymore what can a parent do? I really wish someone had the answer.

    October 4, 2010 at 12:57 pm |
  77. Bruce

    I forgot to ask how to help in my earlier

    October 4, 2010 at 2:41 pm |
  78. Bruce

    How can I help to support the effort of those families whose children have been attacked by bullies? We do have documentation of our efforts to help our daughter through this trying times. We are willing to help those in need.

    October 4, 2010 at 3:04 pm |
  79. Beth

    All we have to do is watch the lastest political ads to see why bullying is so prominent in our society. When delivering the best zinger is more important than the substance of our thoughts, why are we so suprised that our children choose to be mean? Being tender-hearted and having empathy in the adult world is considred weak. Our children our being carefully taught how to bully. They are emulating us.

    October 4, 2010 at 3:26 pm |
  80. Kim

    Never throw the first punch,always throw the last ? Wax on right hand,wax off left. Budget cuts hampering counselors from spending time with students ? Comprehensive development guidance models to maximize "YoNoBullyBro" with guidance counselors on go. No time to wait for Superman and inflat one and attach to top of bus filled with Dr's of psycholgy and School Guidance Counselors. Theme song Wooly Bully and dedicate Whitney Houston's ,"Step By Step." School Counselors eliminated in Elementary Schools without 600 students ? Absurd and support your American School Buildings and young people ! These are tough economic times and School Guidance Counselors are doing more with less. What are we as United States Citizens going to do about it and help support to find a solution ? Raise public awareness and "Mony,Mony..." Way to go CNN !

    October 4, 2010 at 7:10 pm |
  81. Alex B

    I always hear, "Kid's are so mean!" This comment comes from adults that gues what......... used to be kids. What are we doing to make the situation better? We as parents need to take on the responsibility to make sure that our kid(s) understands how comments effect others. Whatever hapened to "If you don't have anything nice to say, don't say anything at all!"? It is up to us to change the way we think and the way our kids think. We can sit here and talk about who bullied us and how we bullied others and feel bad about it now, but that doesn't mean anything if we do not do something to change that moving forward. If we do the same thing today that we did yesterday and expect change, we are fooling ourselves.

    October 5, 2010 at 9:12 am |
  82. Jeff

    How about the nation can suck it up and stop whining? Kids have bullied kids since the beginning of man. I was bullied as a kid and the way I stopped it was not running to mommy and daddy or CNN – You confront your problems and harassers, whether it be through words or physical confrontation. The real world doesn't look out for everyone and you won't always be able to run to a news network that's desperate for something to fill a time slot with.

    Man up to your fears and/or bullies and grow up.

    October 5, 2010 at 10:40 am |
  83. Eileen

    Bullying begins at home. I beilieve some children themselves bullies are victims of bullying style parenting and or sybling bullying. Thus creating a "mean spirited" child. Parents of bullies need to be made accountable for their bully child. Bullying goes beyond the classroom and play yard to the realm of adults in the workplace. I've witnessed more adult bullying of coworkers, than I ever recall seeing in childhood. It's just basic meaness...and it's a personality trait that if not checked in the developing years plays out for life.

    October 5, 2010 at 10:41 am |
  84. Farzad

    When our adults the so called representatives of the people, the Senators, congressmen/women, and the church con-artists, that in the name of God and religion provoke people against one another for race, sex and else, what do you expect from the kids that are exposed to these so called adults?
    I am a 56 years old and was bullied by an ignorant neighbor of mine calling me a terrorist and else, he is in his 30's, a total red neck drunk, but, if it wasn't for my own self control and knowing how to deal with his ignorance, things could have become much uglier.

    Ignorance is the mother of all he evil.. Our adults are acting the same due to the same issue.
    As I was watching the Football game, observed a father screaming his lung in front of all other kids, cussing his son for making the wrong move!
    Society should have set of rules, and when such actions are seen, it must be stopped and nipped right there and then, so we don't have to go thru these sad moments anymore.

    Farzad

    October 5, 2010 at 10:46 am |
  85. Gunter Beyer

    As a German youth educated in a catholic school in Anglo/Saxon Australia as a journalist/speechwriter, I was constantly bullied. Face the fact, you will never stamp out bullying. I fought back with my words and fists (no, not a gun, which are almost impossible to acquire in Australia). My bullying experience made me a stronger person. I came home once with a black eye. My father immediately took me to a youth club to learn how to box (no, not learn to shoot). Several months later, I had no issues with bullying. The GW bridge incident was not bullying, but twisted bias. I have 3 teenage children. All have been bullied, all have used their minds and occasionally, their fists, to fight back. They are stronger for it. Signed, "the Kraut' (one of my many nick names.

    October 5, 2010 at 10:56 am |
  86. joan

    I am beside my self, not knowing what to do next, my granddaughter is in eighth grade,and has been bullied and with sexaul harresment, been called terrible names,has been slapped, punched and has been stocked. The principle and supertendant has done nothing to stop it.I fear for her emotional health,she is a very nice and beautiful child, and should not have to live this way! CARING GRAND MOTHER

    October 5, 2010 at 3:20 pm |
  87. Greg, Ontario

    When I was thirteen we had a serious bully in our school. He was a year older and much bigger than us. Being an army base most of the people involved were told to deal with it by their fathers. So we did. Seven of us armed with baseball bats waited for him one day and told him he probably wouldn't survive the next time we came after him. It was like someone flicked a switch. The guy never bullied anyone again. In fact he ended up being a team mate of mine in three different sports and we are still freinds today. We never speak of that day with the bats and I believe it's because he really believed us. Bullies are just people lacking freindship. Once the threat is nullified all your left with is someone looking for a freind that doesn't know how to make them.

    October 6, 2010 at 10:35 am |
  88. Lisa Goff

    7TH GRADE. i WAS A CHUBBY SHY GIRL Red headed Sheila tormented me all year, showing off for her friends who seemed to enjoy the show. Two weeks before the end of the school year, PE Locker room, she started in again, intimidating, in my face, in clear view of the teacher through the plate glass window to her office. Suddenly I saw my hand print rising clearly across her cheek. Teacher ran out, :I saw that you two in here NOW!" Teacher demanded I apologize! "The only thing I'm sorry for is I didn't do it first week of school!" I yelled. " Well then go to the principal!" said teacher. I said "Let's GO!" Teacher looked at Sheila, "What about it Sheila?" Sheila said "Just forget it". No more grief from SHEILA! She lost face in front of her friends and I'd bet she thought twice before bullying the next victim. This was about 1969, North Kansas City Mo.

    October 6, 2010 at 9:14 pm |
  89. latresha

    i was taught to treat others how you want to be treated. a lot of times kids do ignorant things and parents have to do a better job at paying attention to what their children are doing. there are times that i pop up at my kids school during varies times of the day just to see what they are doing. And i was working full time, now that i have 4 children i dont work full time anymore. i also work with my kids to understand that people will say cruel things but they are not important. i was taught that " they talked about, jesus and he was perfect so what would make us any different". we need to teach children to stand up for themselves and not necessarily with violence. but sometimes it is.

    October 7, 2010 at 12:50 pm |
  90. Amie Densmore

    Let's get this straight right now; "bullying is a global issue", not just found in one school, one community or in one city over another, or one country over another. It starts at a very early age and as a core social problem of society itself. If it is not witnessed, talked about, and curbed immediately, as seen, it goes to the next stage which is 'violence' and after that it progresses to what we call 'wars'. We must develop a number of effective curriculums based strategies used in every school in our country and around the world that do not just lecture to, or talk at the children but involved them in teams as problem solvers, giving them the power to create solutions that they themselves will get involved with and teach their fellow peers. Then KIDZ will become committed to the solutions themselves and feel compassion for others that have experienced such a fate. I know this for a fact because as a teacher I have developed one little successful program addressing this very issue called kidsteachingkidz. Those that have felt the blows of bullying will experience a sense of healing (even the adults involved in the process) knowing that everyone in the class is involved together in finding the solutions, even the bullies themselves. Everyone (all humans) has either witnessed bullying, been bullied, or have bullied others themselves. We can be trained to stop this process and to heal ourselves (our society) but we must make it a part of every school program on all grade levels through college and it must continue every year forever, not just this year because it is a HOT TOPIC! If it has to be mandated at each school level so be it! Society must get a handle on this base issue NOW! Using the month of October to raise awareness of the nature of ‘Bullying ‘ for society, as a whole is a true beginning as long as it last every October year after year! Thanks again for your efforts on this very big and growing social / global issue!

    October 7, 2010 at 8:54 pm |
  91. Dan

    (enjoy my rambling and frustration)
    I am reading more and more about bullying and it irritates me. For one I dont feel there needs to be a new law for Bullying like they are tryign to do in NJ. There are already many laws and crimes that can be attached with bullying. Hate crimes and assault seem to be the most common. I know through out school we were lectured on bullying but it still happend and seems to be happening more. One big issue is that we have a moral lacking as Americans. people prefer to stand by and watch things happen. Where are your morals step up be a good person and say something. (or are you afraid you will be picked on) another way to get back at these people who personally are some of the worst people in our civilization (or maybe its their parents not sure on that one ) say things back at them. the ones saying it usually have mroe things you can comment about than they can about you. i know most people teach you forgive and forget but sorry the original bibal god was all for "an eye for an eye". just remember though these idiots are trying to look cool and show off but in reality they look like idiots and horrible people. the ones getting picked on and dealing with it are usually the stronger people but some are too weak to deal with it over an extended amount of time. what happend to our morals. start standing up for others im sure you would want a stranger stand up for you if you were getting beat.

    October 8, 2010 at 9:33 am |
  92. Mike Staples

    In my day during the sixties, the issue of bullying usually resulted in a fight after school by the two kids. Many times, as with my case, friendships would evolve between the two kids. Sometimes a kid being bullied would actually hire one of the tough guys for protection and the bullying would immediately cease.

    I can honestly say that I never bullied. Yes, I got into fights, but they were the result of being "called out". After one or two victories, both parties usually emerged with mutual respect and life went on in school with no further problems. My father put my brothers and me into a peewee-wrestling program when we were real young. This lead to a few of us wrestling through high school. I did the same with my son who went on to be a 197 lb. college wrestler. He gave my sisters some self-defense advice. When my daughter was in fifth grade, some kids behind her in the bus were making inappropriate comments to her. After one warning, she turned around and belted the kid in the mouth shortly before the kid was dropped off with his father waiting. Needless to say, Dad didn't complain and once word got around, she was respected by all.

    In order to circumvent bullying, kids must gain confidence either through a contact sports program or some other aggressive sport. It's good for their health, good for their self-confidence and will help offset the occurrence of bullying. Remember, even in the wild, the predator normally goes after the young, not the mature adults.

    October 8, 2010 at 11:18 am |
  93. Sam

    A lot of the bullying starts as verbal abuse. How will our children learn not to bully and say/do offensive things when our local leaders and politicians flood the market with negative campaigning in order to emerge on the top. For our children their school lives mimic their role models. We should go back to what our parents taught us. "if you don't have anything nice to say, then don't say anything at all." Our children will learn from our examples. Children are vulnerable and impressionable, but if we learn to tolerate and respect each other than our children will follow suit. Teach by example.

    October 9, 2010 at 7:51 pm |
  94. Kat

    This is a grave issue which I believe needs solutions before any more children die...
    I feel that any student who is saying or doing anything cruel should be suspended, PERIOD, and the authorities should be called... The kids who are suspended should also be monitored by authorities by wearing an ankle bracelet until they are allowed back in school (if they are)...these kids should be treated no better than criminals because that is what they are, and the parents and authorities should have to deal with them instead of sending them off to school to torment other kids, teachers etc... I also believe that it should be mandatory that ALL students in public schools wear uniforms...I know there are people who feel that this infringes on certain rights, but I feel that it is good for so many reasons... the main one I see is that it desegregates the students by putting them all in the" same boat", by making them less judgmental of each other based on looks, and maybe more focused on the reason they are there, because a uniform is a symbol of unity, importance and purpose.
    Our children's lives are at stake, and they shouldn't have to suffer every day at the hands of these tormenters...

    October 10, 2010 at 4:18 pm |
  95. Sneezy

    TEACHERS WHERE ARE YOUR COMMENTS!!! It is sad that this site does not have more input from the individuals who are in the field. In a way teachers are being bullied by the administration becasue they feel that if they speak out they will be punished. The truth is that teachers can be taught how to handle bullies all day long however if the administration does not provide the necessary support all the training is useless. Schools run on numbers and if their are too many reports of bulling or bad behavior that has to be reported to the district it looks bad for the school so they end up not reporting them or ignoring them completely.
    Every school that has had a student die from suicide becasue of bulling should be held accountable for murder. Administration is very aware of what is going on in the school they just want to ignore it to avoid having to report it. It would be really nice to see more teachers write their experiences whether it is positive or negative without the fear of losing their job. As for the administration start doing the right thing start protecting the kids that need protecting and punishing the kids that need to be punished. Punishment should involve the parents.

    October 10, 2010 at 9:58 pm |
  96. Grace

    I was bullied every single school day since 3rd grade because of a seizure disorder. I remember a guy I had never even seen ridiculing me about my seizures which was weird, it was usually the ultra popular ones that did it–I guess that's how they got popular. It bugged me and even hurt for a few years after high school, but as adult, I think they're the ones that are less fortunate

    October 12, 2010 at 2:07 pm |
  97. kathelleen

    I have been bullied for years in school. now that i have children-4of them, my older two boys have been bullied for their whole time in school- elementary to high school. The bullying is so bad, that vandalism started. my home would get trash, bodily functions, thrown in my yard, y gardens get damaged, eggs thrown at my home, American flag, and cars. trash goes in my mail box and bodily functions.
    I keep reporting it to the police and the schools. nothing gets done to stop it, it still goes on and both of my boys are graduated from school. My one son has gotten suspended from defending himself to the point he almost got arrested. How is this comforting the victim. He got treated the same way as the bully. yes, suspended for the same amount of days. nothing was done. the school did not talk to the parents, nothing! my son is so traumatized by this all, this is the only behavior he knows when treating with people. He has depression cause of this and more internal behavioral mental issues. Ahhh, school. I pay $3,000 in taxes for this. Aint america great.

    October 14, 2010 at 1:40 pm |
  98. TenderElf

    Being bullied at school and coming home to drunks was very familiar. There was no place safe for me. Thank all the good energy in the universe that there were families in the neighborhood that would embrace me into thier lives. It was from my neighbors and friends who took care of my day to day needs. I left home when I was 16 because my mom kept bringing angry drunk bullies home from the bars ontop of an already dysfunctional home. It was so horrible. I was called all the usual names but what hurt most was how my mom used my orientation against me and started with booze on her breath asking my friends or anyone else who was with me if they were c- sucker. My mother was a terrorist and so were the kids at school. They saw weakness and pounced on it. Thats what I dont get. If i see someone hurt or in pain I want to help not kick them while they are down. I made it and SO CAN YOU! At 43 years old i am still putting myself back together. Be good to each other and love yourself.

    October 15, 2010 at 8:55 am |
  99. joel laski

    My entire seventh grade class in Yonkers, N.Y. except for one girl- it's almost always a girl-! bullied me in a most unsual way. Whenever we were together as a group and the teacher wasn't looking they would turn and laugh at me. Outside of school, one on one, they were often friendly- unless I brought up the harassment. They would then become belligerent and walk away.

    Strangely, the bullying had nothing to do with my being latently gay, unathletic or "different" among these middle class suburban kids who "looked like me." Our homeroom teacher earnestly spoke with them and told me, "They only want you to laugh with them. Then they'll stop." As humiliating as that was I tried, and failed. I then refused to go to school.

    My parents went to the principal, who told them attendance was compulsory and showed them the door. That afternoon mom and dad enrolled me in one of the most prestigious private schools in New York City. They subsequently struggled to pay tuition although I was entitled to education at a public school. Best thing that ever happened to me. I came out as gay at age fifteen, and at the new school met the boy who is now my partner of forty-four years. You see, the incident happened in 1955.

    October 15, 2010 at 9:37 am |