Rude, Mean or Worse? Always Take the Kind Road
August 28, 2018
Our differences make us stronger, our world more vibrant. But it’s also natural to gravitate toward those who share our same interests.
“I encourage teens to give themselves room to grow into their beliefs. Expand your view, challenge ideas, meet new people. Of course there will be things and people you prefer more than others,” said Bridget Mostek, LIMHP, CHI Health psychotherapist.
“In every interaction, even when there’s conflict, we can all choose to be tactful, polite and even respectful,” she said. “Choosing kindness doesn’t mean you’re obligated to like a person. It’s less about them and more about the type of person you choose to be.”
Challenged by someone with differing views? Before you respond, ask herself, “How would I feel if these were the last words spoken to someone I love?” Mostek said. “We never know the inner battles other people face; represent yourself well and strive for kindness.”
Many young people will experience bullying over the course of their lifetime.
However, not every conflict is bullying. Sometimes it’s just bad, unacceptable behavior.
How to tell the difference:
Rudeness: Carelessly saying or doing something that hurts someone.
Meanness: Purposefully saying or doing something once, maybe twice, to hurt someone.
Bullying: Intentionally aggressive behavior, repeated over time, that involves an imbalance of power. Three components must be present:
- Repeated actions or threats
- A power imbalance
- Intention to cause harm
Who Bullies Target Most
Bullies don’t need a reason to treat someone badly. But according to a new study, weight is the predominant reason kids become targets. Parents can combat this trend – so pervasive it’s been dubbed “fat shaming” – by helping teens develop a positive body image. Start by being a positive role model and avoiding negative talk about food, weight, body size and shape.
More from this issue:
- Pressure Doesn’t Make Perfect: Beware Sky-High Expectations
- Rude, Mean or Worse? Always Take the Kind Road
- Helicopter No More: Be Present without Hovering
- When Those Facebook Friends Aren’t Your Friends After All
- Teen Suicide: An Alarming Trend
- Cutting: An Explainer
- Empower Your Kids to Handle Peer Pressure
- Simple Ways to Break the Silence – Conversation Starters
- Mood Swings, Aggression, Depression – It’s Not a Phase
- Mental Illness: 10 Warning Signs
- Set Limits for Strong Kids
- Under Your Influence: Parents Play Vital Role in Kids’ Alcohol, Drug Use
- Vaping and Juuling: A Trend on Fire
- Building Kids Up: The Parents' Role
- Why Doesn’t Anyone Like Me?
- Trophy-Free Self-Esteem: Get It with Grit
- Break Free: Releasing Anxiety's Grip