I'm sorry I wasn't here for After School Wednesday yesterday. This week it's After School THURSDAY and I hope you're joining us.
If you're here for the first time, check out on the right side where it says So Not Okay. Click that and you'll see the instructions for joining the Tribelet.
If you were here last time, here's what's happening.
So far the Tribelet has seven members who have said, "Count me in!"
MARGARET MAGGIE HADASSAH LARISSA MADIE ALYSSA RYLIE
If you've said you want to be part of our Tribelet but you don't see your name, please comment and I'll put you on the list. EACH of you will receive a button for your shirt or backpack that says BULLYING IS EVERYBODY'S PROBLEM. ALYSSA will get three, one for each girl in her at-home Tribelet AND she'll receive a poster for her group. If you're on that list, please have your mom or dad email me from THEIR email account, giving me your address so I can send your button. Assure them that I won't use that information for anything else.
Now that we know who we are and what we're about, it's time for your first challenge. It has to do with the #1 Code Card the Tribelet in SO NOT OKAY helps Ginger (the target of bullying) use. It's called "Save the Tears."
Lydia, the mentor for the Tribelet in So Not Okay (like I'm your mentor here) explained it this way:
"Ginger, don't let the bullies see you cry or get mad or show any emotion at all. Of course you're going to feel emotion, but you can't let them see it. That's what they want. Don't give them what they want. Save the tears for later."
Lydia goes on to explain that Ginger (or anyone being bullied) just has to hide what she feels long enough to get away.
That's where you as a Tribelet come in. If you see a person being bullied and he or she is close to either crying or exploding, you should:
* go to her side (take some other people if you can but you can do it alone)
* either take his/her hand or just say very quietly, "Come with me," or "I'll walk with you," or "I want to show you something over here."
* Don't say anything to the bully or bullies. Don't even look at them if you can help it. This is about the person who is being attacked.
* Move slowly away with the bullied person until you've reached a place where he or she can cry or stomp a foot or something.
* Once you're in safe territory, explain the Save the Tears idea. And, of course, tell him or her about SO NOT OKAY
Remember not to threaten the bully in any way, not even with a look that says, "I'm watching you," or "Don't mess with me." You don't want to become a bully yourself.
This isn't about changing the bully or maybe even stopping the bullying with that one simple act. It's just about giving the victim a chance to stay strong and not let the bully know she's getting to her.
Here's your challenge:
* Think of a person who gets teased, pushed around or just plain bullied in your school, neighborhood, church (yeah, it happens there), sports team, dance or gymnastics studio, co-op -- even in your family.
* Be on the look-out for the next incident
* When it happens, step up and help that person Save the Tears as shown above.
* Then write it all down, what happened, how the person reacted, all of it and either post it as a comment or email it to me and I'll post it as part of MY post.
Everyone who meets this Save the Tears Challenge will receive a copy of "Tips For Standing Up to Bullying" signed by me. (Yeah, you can download it from the website but not everybody has a color printer -- and I'll write some personal comments for you)
There is one more way you can meet this challenge. If YOU are bullied with words until you want to scream and there is no one there to help you, Save the Tears yourself. Hide your feelings until you get to a safe place. And as you do, remember that all of us here are with you in spirit, cheering you on. Follow the same instructions to win.
If you have anything to share about making bullying SO NOT OKAY this week, you can comment on that too. We're all in this together, Tribelet! I'll be praying for you.