It’s a new school year and for those of you who are reading this and didn’t have such a great year last year, I hope things are much better this year.  Things can change.  Sometimes the mix of the students in a classroom changes, sometimes they can get a more understanding and patient teacher, sometimes they find new friends.

Whatever it is, enjoy it.

And for those of you who are worried that things haven’t changed at all, I am so sorry.  This post isn’t about the kids as much as it’s about you.

Parents worry and worrying can make us sick.  When our kids are unhappy, it’s hard to feel joy.

I often talk about being the Be the One Go-To Trusted Adult for kids but I think adults need a trusted adult, too.  Often, bullying is hard to talk about with others, even other parents.  Although you may have a good group of friends, it can be difficult to discuss it if their kids aren’t experiencing the same thing.  It almost feels like you and your child are singled out.  It can be very isolating and who wants to feel like a “loser.”  No one.  Child or adult.

But just as kids shouldn’t feel alone, neither should the parents.  It’s good to reach out to other people who can genuinely sympathize, offer perspective and some general support.

And if you’re not experiencing a particular issue with bullying this year but understand it all too well, try to reach out to the moms and dads who are tied up in knots over their children’s sadness caused by meanness from peers.  Sometimes it just takes a smile — and the knowledge that you can keep a confidence — to give other parents the energy they need to support their children and to keep pushing through.

I am sending you good wishes for all good things as this year unfolds.

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