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Where Do Our Children Learn Bullying? From us!

Driving is an easy vehicle to practice ending the “bullying cycle”

You are driving the safe speed limit on a windy country road after dark and the person behind you is in a hurry.  You can feel the tension.  You can see the tension through the flashing high beams.  There is nowhere to pull off and the double yellow line is properly painted to discourage passing.  You can see the look on the person’s face and they are motioning you to speed up.  You know any faster would be unsafe, and the impatient driver behind you doesn’t care.  He is determined to make you go faster, flashing lights, motioning for you to pull over or speed up, honking and shaking his hand at you.  There is nowhere to pull over!  The person in the car behind you is a bully, and he is endangering his and your lives and the lives of others. Could his destination be that critical?

Finally, he passes you over a double yellow line on a somewhat blind curve and causes the oncoming car to swerve over to the side.  Everyone is okay, no one got hurt, he is lucky—–THIS TIME.

You are at a light and the green arrow finally flashes.  The person ahead of you stalls, you honk, but you don’t just honk to let her know, you lean on the horn to reprimand her.  You are a bully in this situation.  Horns aren’t for reprimanding; they are for safety issues only.

You are making a left turn and clearly have enough room, only the person who you are turning in front of wants to teach you a lesson..  “How dare you try to turn in front of me?”  She speeds up deliberately and defiantly to teach you a lesson you won’t forget, almost causing a collision.  She is a bully.

You are being tailgated and you are going the safe speed for the rainy conditions, even though slightly under the speed limit, and you are being tailgated.  You could pull over, but instead you flip the person off, slow down more to “torture” her, and she almost rear ends you.  You are being a bully.  You don’t like her, and the last thing you would want to have with her is a relationship.  The reality is if she rear ends you or you cause her to have an accident, you have a relationship with her for a long time, possibly a litigious one, and you well spend a good deal of time with her, which was not at all your intention.

All the while and in each incident, there are children in both cars, diligently studying the art of bullying.  And in many cases, you are the instructor.

Let’s all slow down, take a deep breath, and exhale.  Maybe we should leave earlier, or allow more time.  Maybe getting to the destination quickly is not worth the risk, or the example it sets.

Maybe the one who pulls over is actually the winner.

Once in a while our children listen to us, but they are always watching us!


c. Rick Concoff 2012

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