Journalism Next from Saint Stephens Episcopal School

Special to the HeraldMarch 18, 2013 

Carrie Goldman, author of "Bullied," visited Saint Stephen's recently and spoke to The Gauntlet staff about the issue of bullying in today's society.

She said bullying has evolved, whether it takes place on the playground or in the virtual world on Facebook.

"It's not that there is more bullying; it's that bullying is more visible," Goldman said.

However, Goldman said she believes the old-fashioned form of bullying is worse that cyber bullying.

"You can't turn off the fact that when you walk into a classroom no one wants you to sit next to them," she said.

Goldman said victims have two ways to respond to bullying: passive or aggressive.

"You either shut down, meaning you just want it to stop, so you stop doing whatever is drawing the attention. The other response is to lash out and fight back," she said.

In her book, Goldman gives advice to parents of the victims. A parent herself, Goldman said the best way to deal with bullying is to refrain from forming judgments about the kids who were the perpetrators.

Goldman also said it is important for parents and

teachers to get involved when dealing with bullying. In fact, Goldman said schools with the least bullying are the schools with active and involved teachers.

"Schools that have respected adults engaged with the kids in cafeteria and hallways have less bullying," she said.

Goldman said other factors, such as a lack of uniforms, can contribute to bullying because students who show their own style, in particular the brand of clothes they wear, open themselves up to criticism from their peers.

In the end, Goldman advised Upper School students to be themselves.

"It's OK to be yourself. You don't have to conform to these expectations with every last person in your life," she said.

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