Monday, October 4, 2010

Teasing; Is It Good or Bad

First let's take a look at the definition of teasing.  According to teasing means to annoy or pester; to make fun; mock playfully. 
So, I ask the question. is teasing good or bad?  I say both.  Some examples of good teasing is when two friends tease one another about something that they both can laugh about and not be upset about.  An example of good teasing is the other's love for eating only red apples everyday.  An example of bad teasing is about someone's weight or appearance.  Appearance can be tricky.  It can be good or bad depending on how the people feel about it.  I had a friend that would tease me about a shirt I loved.  She wasn't being mean, she just knew I loved that shirt so it was ok.  But if someone is teasing you about the way it fits or looks and it hurts your feelings then it is bad teasing.

I stress strongly that you are the only one to determine if the teasing is good or bad.  You have to speak up and let the teaser know you DO NOT LIKE IT!  The first line of defense in teasing and bullying is to speak up.  Stop it the first time someone teases you, don't allow it to happen a second or third time. 

Teasing is usually the beginning of more extreme bullying.  There is no psychical contact in teasing, it's all verbal or actions.  But it is very hurtful. 

Parents, take the time to talk to your children everyday and in that conversation ask how their day was, who did they play with and what did they play.  You learn a lot with those few questions.  Explain to them it is not ok for someone to pick with them about how they did on a test or what they have on if it hurts their feelings.  Talk to them about their feelings.  I found many children did not know how to express their feelings and just bottle everything up. 

To close, teasing can be fun and teasing can be hurtful.  Only you can determine if it is ok, but when it's not ok, speak up and stop it now.

This is a book I love to help explain teasing to young children.  I use it when I do programs in the schools.
A Book about Teasing

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