I saw a poll the other day on Parents.com, asking “Would you rather have your child be bullied or be a bully?”
It's a forced choice between two things, neither of which a parent would wish for their child. No one wants to see their child in pain--physical, emotional, or otherwise--but if, hypothetically, the only alternative was for my child to cause other children pain, I would rather her be the innocent victim. To me, it seems to be a basic choice about the character you hope your child will possess.
After clicking “bullied,” I was really surprised to see that 59% had said they would rather their child be the bully. 41% said “bullied."
I suppose that a lot of parents cringe so strongly at the thought of their child being victimized, they would rather their child be strong and confident "to a fault" and simply have to teach them to reign it in and be nicer to others--as if it were that simple. Kids who bully often have very low self-esteem, and a whole host of other issues causing them to act out.
It would break my heart to know Kate was getting teased or picked on, but I would talk her through it, help her be strong, and take what action was necessary through her teacher, etc. It would be sad and difficult, but I would much prefer that to rehabilitating an angry child lacking empathy for others. What do you think?