It’s my own personal opinion that a counselor should remain unbiased, open minded and tolerant to everyone’s opinions, thoughts, and feelings. It’s what we do. It’s one of the reasons why we can help people as we have to be able to meet a client where they are in their own lives, NOT where the counselor is in life. For this reason I refrain from talking politics with anyone other than my close personal friends and family. If a client asks me my opinion I will always defer back to the fact that counseling is not about me but about them and how would knowing my thoughts on something change or affect them.
Are there times I would like to tell the world my own opinions? You bet I would. But then that would get me on another sticky topic of social media and let’s not right now. Because these days, if one takes things personally, much of what is taking place now could be seen as bullying one person/culture/group or another. (That might be one of my next posts)
Most recently, especially over the past 12 months, there has been so much negativity in our world regarding politics, feelings, equal rights, and just our society in general. Is this new? No. Every election brings out some group(s) who feel slighted or angry. But something over the past few days really struck a nerve with me. So this post is not about politics. It’s about bullying and how it appears that we, as adults, sometimes teach our children one thing, but often do something totally different.
The definition of bullying is: (according to Webster) a : a blustering, browbeating person; especially : one who is habitually cruel, insulting, or threatening to others who are weaker, smaller, or in some way vulnerable <tormented by the neighborhood bully> Merriam-Webster
My primary mission in life is to help children grow to be happy, healthy people who follow their hearts and their own personal goals. To help them be the people that I know they can become, the people they want to be. Among all the issues children and young people have to contend with in our world, bullying continues to be a real issue for many. Is it the most threatening to them? No. But it is a problem. Sure, most of us would agree that it’s wrong, it needs to stop, and society needs to change its views of it. Do I feel that at times it can go a bit over board too? Sure. Everything can.
Most recently I saw where an adult, a member of the entertainment community posted a tweet about a 10 year old boy. Let me write that out again in case you did not catch it. An Adult, posted something mean, and hurtful about a 10 year old boy (who, through no fault of his own is a celebrity) and it went viral. Is this not the very thing that we try to teach our children NOT to do? To not use social media or any other way, to down grade, humiliate, or pick on anyone?
That just really makes me sad for everyone involved. The woman who tweeted the insult for feeling that she could use something hurtful about a child to make entertainment for other adults, the company who hired her, the people who continued to agree with her and add to her hurtful comment, the parents of the child, of course the very child, but also our entire society which appeared for a few days condoned such behavior. These same adults (I hope) are trying to teach their own children, and grandchildren not to bully other’s condoned this one women’s ignorant tweet. Yes, it was ignorant.
Yes, the child is a celebrity. But did that make this comment any less hurtful or OK to make? This is a 10 year old boy and it would not matter who the child’s parents are, this child has friends, goes to school, attends events. The remark will be repeated and he will have to deal with it until it all dies down. Hopefully it will and he will be able to look at it in the future and know that he did nothing to deserve it other than to be the brunt of someone’s foolish attempt at making a name for herself. She did.
At first I wanted to boycott the show who hired her. That appears to be the going thing these days isn’t it? Let’s get really, really mad at a company and just boycott their product. It’s going to hurt them, right? If I did that every time a company produced something I didn’t like or agree with I might not have many products in my home, or be able to watch very much on TV. So, I reminded myself that we are all humans and do stupid things from time to time. We basically screw up sometimes. Most actions are normally forgotten or forgiven over time in order to move forward with life. I read where the company has done its own form of reprimand and she has issued an apology. SNL-apology
So parents, and all of you adults….practice what you preach!