Tuesday, February 3, 2015

Victim Bullying

Dear Rhonda and Dr. Cheri,                                                            

My son, Jeremy, was hit, dragged out of bed, forced to take cold showers and made to run a couple miles each day before school so he could be a great soccer player and pay for his “own damn school.” His dad would yell at him every single day, “Can’t you take it son – what’s wrong with you – you going to act like a baby and cry?" (This only happened once and Jerry never cried again.) 

Jerry recently started picking on his sister, Sarah. They are both in a small middle school here. Sarah has cried several times and runs into the bathroom. She says that she’s going to kill herself and she can’t take it anymore. So now she has her girlfriends teasing Jerry and telling him he doesn’t deserve to live and that the whole world would be better if he was dead because he’s so mean.

We have tried to talk with both of them and tell them to get along. Sarah throws a tantrum. She says we don’t understand how much he bullies her and that we don’t care about her.

Now Jeremy sulks around like a zombie and sleeps all day. His dad told him last night he better shape up and stop picking on his sister or else he would send him to live with a foster family. He calls him lazy and Jerry says, “Whatever.”

Sarah’s friends began bullying Jerry now and Sarah smirks about it. Jerry comes home and doesn’t do homework or study or anything really. He puts his I-Pod on and doesn’t come down for dinner. He’s loosing a lot of weight which causes his dad to tease him about that too.

Jerry posts horrible things about his life on You-Tube and Face Book so his dad said he couldn’t go on them anymore. Jerry ignored him and I’ve seen him on those websites and other sites that I don’t know what they are about. I try to hold him and say everything will be fine and that his dad doesn’t mean anything. Jerry acts like nothing’s happened and hardly talks to anyone or hang out with his friends. He lies to me about stupid stuff.

Last night he told me I won’t have to worry about him anymore. I’m scared he’ll run away. When I told his dad, his dad threatened Jerry again and grabbed his arm to tell him. Then he took Sarah to get ice cream right in front of Jeremy. Our son left and came home very late that night. I was scared for him but Jeremy didn’t look at me and went to bed.


My Son’s a Bully

Dear My Son is a Bully,

A couple of years ago, it became somewhat accepted that victims of bullying are at a higher risk of suicide. And yet most parents do not seem to know this information.

Both of your children are at risk for suicide because they are what we now call, “Bully Victims.” They were bullied by their father, then they bullied each other and now both of them are exhibiting signs of suicide. The #1 reason for any type of bullying=Revenge.

“Bully Victim” cycle in your family:

Father    Jeremy  ► Sarah    back to Jeremy

Victims of bullying usually choose one of these two behaviors: They stay a victim or they start bullying someone else – it’s the transmogrification of their horrible experiences.

Signs of suicidal behavior:

  1. Ongoing sadness
  2. Withdrawal from people and activities
  3. Little participation in their favorite activities, school, home life, and social life (which does not include social media … that might be increased)
  4. Sleeping or eating too much or too little
  5.  An increase interest in death or dying
  6. Little interest in their things … giving them away
  7. Expressing they “can’t handle it anymore”
  8. Life would be better off without them

You are passively participating in your husband’s bullying behavior by not speaking up for your children and stopping the behavior. However, even if you may not have realized it, you have the power to change your family and your family cyclical bullying and abuse by immediately taking their threats and behavior seriously and getting your children immediate help from a counselor, doctor, Emergency Room, Suicide Hotline-1.800.273.8255 … also keep weapons and prescription drugs away from your kids.

Statistic results from several recent studies:
Victims (Only)-Twice as likely to commit suicide as compared to kids not bullied
“Bully Victims”-Four times as likely to commit suicide compared to those not bullied

Acknowledge your children and let them know that they are being bullied. They need your validation and attention. They need your support, love, and care.

Rhonda and Dr. Cheri

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