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Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Yes, Gandhi-ish is a word.

I was listening to a talk show that I tune in to daily, on XM Radio. A caller referred to her 7 or 8 year old son and how he was being bullied at school because he just had that type of personality, where he was easy to take advantage of. The radio show host suggested that mom enroll her child in some type of martial arts classes, so that if anyone was to ever lay a hand on him, he could defend himself. She also referenced the fact that this would build his self confidence and make him less of a target.
This segment of the radio show has really had me thinking for the past week or so about what my husband and I should teach our children. I haven't discussed it with my spouse, because I know exactly what his answer will be, but what's yours?
Do we teach our children to defend themselves if being attacked? to teach bullies a lesson? to help defenseless children? or do we teach our children to walk away? to not fight violence with violence? to take a more "Gandhi-ish" approach?
There are so many things I have to say on this topic, that I don't even know where to start.. and it'd probably be more than you would like to read. So I'm leaving the talking up to you all... What will you teach your children when it comes to their physical safety? And do you think it's different for boys than girls


Shannan said...

I have two boys, but I think boys and girls need to be taught the same lesion. First and for most I teach my boys to be leaders. If they are playing with a group or one person and that playmate chooses not be nice, they are advised to walk away from the situation by telling the friend, "I choose not to play with you right now, if your going to act that way." I teach Jeyden and Dylen they can help other students by setting a good example. I explain to them many times that each household has different rules and some mommies and daddies are around more then others. I NEVER advise him to hit back, because I believe that is confusing to a child to say, "This time it's OK to hit but not the next." Violence should never be the answer in my eyes. I also have taught the boys that if they see a student being picked on, I say, "God would like you to be that students friend and make him/her feel equal." A bully acts out because they are being miss treated by someone. Two wrongs don't make a right, thats what our children need to value. That's my opinion ;)