She looked up at me, eyes puffy, the color of pink Valentine sweeties, and said, matter-of-factly, "I hate school." What I did in response surprised me, and, I think, both of my girls too.
Our experiences growing up with bullying affected us in some challenging ways, but it also motivated us to work hard to prevent others from living through what we experienced. While resources weren't available then, it gives us relief and joy to see them available today.
So one day after picking Morgan up at school I asked her if Mary had ever done anything unkind to her. Morgan reached up from the back seat and pinched me hard behind the neck under my hair. Then she told me about the numerous control moves that Mary was using to try and control Morgan's actions. I tried to remain calm but my heart was racing. My child was afraid at school and it seemed to be out of my control.
We need to change society's attitude towards bullying; we have to educate each other about the things that make us the unique individuals we are -- the same things that other people use as a basis for bullying.
As a parent, it is critically important that we let our children know that they can come to us for help. It is equally important that we know exactly how to respond so that we don't make the situation worse.
At least 26-percent of Hispanic students live in fear of being subjected to peer abuse, and that number comes only from those students willing to report their instances of bullying.
These groundbreaking anti-bullying trainings, called "LGBTQ on Campus" for both students and staff in higher education, help more people build the skills they need to create safe higher education environments and improve outcomes for vulnerable students.
Extreme disciplinary responses can actually make the problem worse, and even hurt the very students they are designed to protect. To defend themselves, victims of bullying often see no other choice than to employ survival tactics, which could include carrying a weapon.
What I'm seeing in my youngest son is both sad and predictable: His growing consciousness of social rules is turning into a growing self-consciousness, and I wish I could stop it. I know I can't, but at least maybe I can give them some tools to help.
If you have a daughter, don't just talk to her about being a good person, get all up in her business the way you do with grades, sports, nutrition and safety. Every morning say to her: Be someone's discovery of kindness in the world.
Anyone who is truthful about their childhood remembers instances of bullying in one of two ways. They were either the victims of violence themselves or they had been unwilling witnesses to a bullying incident. The fact is, bullying has been an unfortunate fact of life for too many generations of children.
Texting is a huge part of the American teenagers' lexicon. Some savvy schools are starting to take advantage of this technology and how frequently teens use it.
With millions of students returning to schools across the country over the coming weeks, dedicated educators and concerned parents must work together to find a solution to the U.S. bullying epidemic in order to establish safe learning environments for all students.
Placing LGBTQ students in a "risk" category -- positions the group of students identifying as LGBTQ as a potential "problem" for the school that requires a solution, rather than as a group of students bringing untapped assets and strengths into the school community.
Like me, many teens feel isolated and alone when coming to terms with their sexuality and often can't tell their parents for one reason or another. But this unfortunate reality places our teachers in an even more vital role in our children's lives.
I wish that parents of transgender kids had more opportunities to pass on family traditions, but we are more often struggling with daily survival. It makes me very sad.