A well-researched guide to combating bullying.
Goldman's daughter Katie wasn't interested in being like all the other girls; a big Star Wars fan, she loved her Star Wars water bottle. Her mother was concerned when Katie told her she didn't want to bring the water bottle to school anymore. When Goldman pressed her, Katie broke down in tears, upset that the boys at school told her that Star Wars was only for boys. “Is this how it starts?” she asked herself. “Do kids find someone who does something differently and start to beat it out of her, first with words and sneers?” Goldman addressed the issue with the school and wrote about the experience online, touching off a flood of support from Star Wars fans and, eventually, bullying prevention forums, Twitter and celebrities. Goldman’s empathetic guidebook examines the ways in which bullying happens, from the teasing that takes place in the hallways of schools to the cyberbullying that runs largely unchecked through the digital halls of social media. Academic research into bullying, while useful, often fails to bridge the gap between insight and practical solutions, but Goldman effectively boils down the research into statistics that flow naturally into a larger narrative. The author focuses primarily on how girls are affected by bullying, both as victims and as perpetrators, with less consideration of male victims. This is understandable given Goldman's experience, but a greater examination of bullying of boys would provide a more complete picture. However, this book is a must-read for parents with children of any gender.
Valuable support, resources and concrete actions for safely navigating the social wilderness of adolescence.