This is not a post about D/s. That should become obvious fairly quickly, but I figured I’d put it out there, right up front. 🙂

*~*~*~*~*

I don’t like the word “bullying”. It’s a bit like “name-calling” in the context of street-harassment, in the way it down-plays what’s actually involved.

When people – when adults for whom grade school is decades past – hear the word “bullying” in contexts like “suicidial ideation may have been exacerbated by homophobic bullying”, unless they’ve been on the receiving end of that kind of systemic abuse, they’ll hear “bullying” and think “nanananabooboo” or of that one time the School Loser got shoved against a locker, but it was one time, come on, it’s not that bad…

For most adults (I say, going by the current anti-bullying information that says most kids are neither the bully nor the bullied, but are the bystanders who let it keep happening – quite possibly because they don’t want it to be themselves on the receiving end of that stuff), bullying is a thing they ignored (or had the option of ignoring) because it wasn’t happening to them directly.

I can’t help wondering if we, as a culture (or even just as a city, or a school board), divorced systemic harassment and abuse from the concept of “kids will be kids”; if we called it what it actually is instead of using a nonsense-word to downplay the death threats, physical and sexual assaults, and psychological torture that “bullied” kids live with, daily… If we did that; if we as adults, school teachers, parents, guidance counselors, medical staff, started using Serious Language to talk about this subject, might we also start taking it seriously by treating the perpetrators as perps rather than as “kids being kids”. Might we then make some actual progress towards a reality where high school isn’t hell, or at least one where that pervasive idea doesn’t get used to dismiss the kids who are being hurt?

That’s where my head’s at right now.

TTFN,
Ms Syren.