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Blood is Thicker Than Water, But It's Not Thicker Than Bullying

by David Kuharski

It may just be us... but my wife and I are hawks when it comes to who our kids play with.  We like to meet them and keep tabs on what they're doing... how they're playing... what are they playing.  Most parents want their children to develop life long friendships.  And we dread when its the exact opposite.  Such was the case for Julie and me.  When our oldest son told us about his new friend we were excited, but wary.

As it happens, the friendship turned sour. His "friend", like most 9 year-olds, couldn't decipher and work with our son's challenges.  Before we knew it--he was dreading the mean kid on the block.  For the first time I found myself talking with his folks--trying to explain what was going on.  To make a long story short-- the friendly, neighborly relationship there too turned sour.  It was not the situation any of us wanted (to their credit, his parent was trying to curtail their child's behavior too), but in time both boys began to forget about each other and issues began to die down. 

What happens when your son or daughter can't avoid the northeast corner of the block?  When they can't get a ride home without having to sit within reach of their nemesis?  When they go on vacation--only to have to deal with them at the hotel pool--or at the amusement park--or at Grandma's? 

When I was in school teachers and administrators were on the cusp of finding out the sad and scary truths of bullying in our secular society.  But, now--they're finding that, sometimes, bullying and its effects don't end when our kids close the front door in the face of the bane of their existence.  This article sheds light on what we as parents need to realize in families where there's more than 1 child... 

http://www.usatoday.com/story/news/nation/2013/06/17/bullying-siblings-aggression/2421067/