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Bullying: A Lesson from a Former Bully (DAD EDITION)

Hola Bromigos, if you get the Simpsons reference above, you just earned 1 cool point! If not it's fine, cool points are worthless because I just thought of it right as I was typing this sentence. .

Today, we're diving headfirst into a topic that's as emotionally uncomfortable as wearing Crocs in public (even though they are sooooo comfy, I bought a pair 5 minutes ago for indoor use only) : bullying. Yeah, it's like that old story of the neighborhood bully who never seemed to run out of wedgies and swirlies to dish out. Brace yourselves because we're about to navigate the treacherous waters of hurt feelings, lasting scars, and the general suckiness of being on the receiving end. But fear not, my fellow parents, because.... that's why we're here... to have that awkward yet necessary conversation with our little ones.

Let's face it, amigos, people can be real jerks sometimes. No one is perfect and and entitled to have an occasional bad day or be in a bad mood... But... it's like some people are walking around with a Ph.D. in being super mean.... WHY bro? . Unfortunately, bullying is a universal language spoken in schoolyards and workplaces around the globe. It's like the common cold of human interaction - nobody wants it, but it spreads faster than Facebook Enemys becoming Real Enemys on Facebook Neighborhood chat groups... People of all ages can't help it sometimes. And with that little transition opportunity, let's remember that even adults aren't immune to this contagious behavior. Seriously, why do some people think belittling others is the key to their own happiness? It's like they missed the memo on how to be a decent human being.

Now, let's talk about the aftermath of being on the receiving end of bullying. It's like a persistent itch in your brain that just won't go away. For some, it can leave deep emotional scars that last longer than the Kardashians (I don't get it.... but they are doing pretty good I guess). It's a one-way ticket to the "Am I good enough?" train, with stops at Anxiety Junction and Self-Esteemville.

We need to be there for our kids, folks. We need to remind them that they're awesome little humans who deserve respect and kindness.

But guess what, parents? We also need to address something uncomfortable. Our kids might be tempted to be the bullies themselves. Yeah, I said it. Lo Siento! Don't crucify me just yet. We've all had those days when everything goes wrong, and we feel like the world's punching bag. Sometimes, pushing others down can feel like a twisted shortcut to lifting ourselves up. But let me tell you, it's a trap, a vicious cycle that leads to nothing but regret and a cringe-worthy reflection in the mirror.

Confession time: I, too, have worn the bully sombrero. I know I know.. Really hard to believe.. But its the truth. This guy right here knows what it's like to be on both sides of the battlefield. And let me tell you, looking back, it's embarrassing AF. I realize now that my bullying antics were fueled by insecurity, a desperate attempt to prove that I wasn't the weakest link. But you know what? With history colored glasses, I look very much like the weakest link scurrying for status in the Alpha Based hierarchy of society (It's Science). So, trust me when I say this: bullying is never the answer.

Now, I'm not saying we should wrap our kids in bubble wrap and keep them locked in the basement until they turn 18.

Nope, that's not the solution either. Instead, let's teach them empathy, the superpower that can change lives. Let's encourage them to walk a mile in someone else's Jordans (1's, 3's and 4's are our faves) and see the world from a different perspective. It's about understanding that kindness is contagious too, like laughter in a comedy club or bad breath in an elevator. Watch Ted Lasso (it's obviously fiction, so chill out, but we can can all Try a Little Tenderness sometimes).

So, fellow parents, let's gather around our little humans and have that awkward conversation. Let's tell them that bullying sucks, plain and simple. Let's teach them the importance of kindness, respect, and standing up for those who need it. And, yes, let's share our own stories of misguided misadventures, because the best lessons often come from our own moments of weakness.

Remember, folks, it's our duty to raise a generation that knows the difference between being STRONG and being a BULLY. Together, let's extinguish the flames of bullying and replace them with a blaze of compassion, acceptance, and a healthy dose of self-deprecating humor. Because laughter, my friends, can heal wounds and bring people together, one chuckle at a time.

Stay strong, stay kind, and remember, being a bully is the worst .

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