#NationalBullyingPreventionMonth: How I Put a Stop to Bullying
by Keyaira Boone
In honor of National Bullying Prevention Month we reached out to our BabyBrownSugar Ambassadors to find out how they prevent bullying in and outside of their households. Bullying has received more attention than ever before recently with technology like social media making it easier for strangers to say mean things without consequence. At BabyBrownSugar we’re all about the raising of empowered and confident children and we are thrilled to share our Ambassadors’ tips on tackling bullying. Julia (5), who just started Kindergarten is going through the transition of getting acclimated to her new school environment and making new friends. As always there is a kid or two who tend to tease the new girl or make fun of something about her. At Julia's age, it's on a small scale so my methods of preventing bullying are simple, yet effective. Julia came to me once and said "Mommy, I want straight hair like a girl in my class". My response was to explain to her that she has beautiful curly hair that is amazing and that some people go out of their way (pay) to have curly hair like hers. After that conversation and getting into the habit of wearing my own curls more often , she was empowered to embrace her curls and now I can barely get her to wear a ponytail, go figure! Read on to see how Falasha (pictured above) and other BBS Moms put a stop to bullying! At her new school, Julia brings lunch and snacks from home on a daily basis. One day, her lunch meal consisted of leftovers from dinner the night before: quinoa, chicken and broccoli. A little boy shouted across the class how her food looked gross. That day, Julia did not eat her lunch. When she came home from school and I saw her lunch intact, I asked her why and she told me the boy in her class said her food looked gross so she didn't eat it. My reaction was to simply explain that her lunch was healthy and nutritious for her and only her. I went on to add that as her mom, I wouldn't give her something gross or disgusting. I also explained that what others say to try and hurt you shouldn't matter because her food is meant for her and the little boy's food was meant for him. My next question to Julia was "What did he bring for lunch?" She responded "Lunchables!" I instantly turned the conversation around to explain to her that his choice for a lunch meal was not the healthiest option for her, so in order to keep healthy eating habits, a choice like that for lunch would not be suitable and what she was eating is good for her. My empowerment lesson in this instance was to tell her that what's good for you or meant for you may not be what others will like so they will try to make fun of you. However, if you are strong in believing that you are fine with what you have and are comfortable with that, then that's all that matters. Mother of two Simone believes love is the answer to combat bullying between brother and sister. "We have zero tolerance for bullying in our home. Although SJ and Sparkle are brother and sister, we also teach them that they are friends. This ensures a close bond between them and helps them to understand that showing kindness is making Jesus smile. Of course they have their moments where our family talks go out the window and when they do, we make that we explain to them why it's unacceptable followed by an apology to one another, and because they’re affectionate they always give a hug and a kiss to one another after they are in trouble or sometimes just to show that they love each other. Mother of two Rashida says "One would think there was no bullying going on in my home with a 5 month old and a 3 year old right? WRONG! And guess who is doing most of the bullying? Yep! My 5 month old India! Although Zeek has his moments, India often barks at her brother when she wants his attention, food or toy! As humorous as this seems I have found ways to remedy bullying amongst these little ones. First, I try to be sure and show them equal love in the presence of the other so no one feels slighted I believe bullying at the root comes from feeling rejected and unloved. Second, I correct sternly and in love when bullying and bossiness is going on in my home to show them it's simply not ok or allowed. Third, I try to be an example with my interactions with daddy! They become what they behold and mommy can be a bit bossy at times if not properly dealt with (smile). Ultimately, it's not really bad at this young age but I know the signs and I am a firm believer of training up a child. Everyone in our household deserves love and respect and mom is here to make sure they get it. What tips and tricks do you use to fight bullying and out of your home? Join the conversation on social media using the hashtag #BBSMomsKnow !