With kids back in school, we cannot reiterate enough how crucial and how imperative it is that food allergy bullying is STOPPED, and children know how to handle it in an effective manner.
Last week, we shared a story about food allergy bullying that hit close to home.
The target in our story: my sister (when she was in second grade), struggling to keep the enemy in peanuts away from her, as the bully brought a peanut butter and jelly sandwich towards her mouth. There came a point where she felt she couldn’t defend herself anymore, at least without the help of her school staff.
She mustered courage, got up and walked straight to the School Counselor’s office, just outside the cafeteria. She recalls shaking like a leaf, nervous and frightened, not just about thwarting a severe allergic reaction, but also losing popularity with the other friends, for being that “weird kid” who goes to the counselor.
GOING TO THE COUNSELOR IS NOT “WEIRD”
I am glad my sister’s school counselor sorted things out. She rolled out the Restorative Justice Program.
It’s purpose was to give the bully:
- a deeper understanding of the impact of her behavior
- an opportunity to take responsibility for the harm she caused
- an understanding to harness empathy
- to chance to work on a way to restore the damaged relationship.
After a verbal and written apology from the girl and a note to her family the incident was history as far as my sister was concerned.