"To inspire them to realize more and more of their capacities for living meaningful lives. Because there certainly is meaning to life."
-John Coltrane on Uplifting Others

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

A Conversation with a Niece

In light of my recent searches about internet safety, I called my niece, who will remain nameless. While she is still in grade school, she has not escaped bullying, and I fear that, as she grows older, she may encounter more and more viral bullying. We have talked before about bullying, how it isn't ever right to say bad things about others, and when others are mean, we should pay them no mind. In our recent chat, I tried to show her the difference between what's real and what's fake. Things that are real are bruises, kicks, and such, and that she should avoid fighting, if possible. Fake things are words, gossip and mean faces, which only become real if we think about them too long. I told her that the fake can hurt, but if you pay them no mind, fake things can go away. I told her that there will always be people who love her, and that trumps anything someone can say.
Most importantly, we talked about being nice. She loves to draw, play, and take care of people. She also has a temper when provoked, so we talked about how being nice, whether in person or online, won't lead her down the wrong path. We talked about how she should never hit back or say mean things, even when the other person deserves it.
It was good to talk to her, and I feel that's something that all parents or responsible adults should do. Granted, I am being idealistic in this regard, but shouldn't we teach kids to treat each other with respect?

1 comment:

  1. I agree. And I can think of a few adults who could use this lesson too.