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Would you encourage your child to fight back if physically attacked?

I know there are differing opinions on this.

If your child was attacked physically by another child, without the immediate chance of intervention from an adult, would you advise them to run away/not fight back...or would you advise them to stand up for themselves and fight back?

My parents always taught me to NEVER start a fight, and to try to avoid them at all costs. However, they also told me that if I was attacked first, and couldn't avoid it, to fight back if I could.

How do you feel about this?


Asked by LovingSAHMommy at 2:37 PM on Sep. 16, 2010 in Parenting Debate

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This question is closed.
Answers (42)
  • Hmm.. well my girls are 5 & 3 and I tell them that if a child hits them or something to tell an adult..don't hit back. But if the other kid is seriously attacking them, then I would tell them to throw a few punches! I don't want them to be violent girls, but I don't want them to get beat down either. If the only thing to do is swing.. then do it!


    Answer by SuperrMommyy at 2:39 PM on Sep. 16, 2010

  • I agree with what you said....avoid them at all cost...NEVER start them, but if forced defend yourself!

    I dont want my kid standing there getting punched and not fighting back b/c I said too.

    Answer by mom2twobabes at 2:39 PM on Sep. 16, 2010

  • I taught my son as you were taught. Do not start a fight. If they start, tell them to stop. If they continue, tell a teacher. If she does nothing and the kid persists. Knock him the heck out.

    Answer by BradenIsMySon at 2:40 PM on Sep. 16, 2010

  • If there isn't the chance to get away and no hope of adult intervention, They should fight back. They are not lowering themselves to self-defend!

    "I taught them to NOT fight back. They would be lowering themselves to the level of the bully."

    This means that any woman that is attacked in a dark alley should just lay there and take's called self-preservation

    Answer by Jademom07 at 2:49 PM on Sep. 16, 2010

  • LovingSAHMommy: I disagree. Even if that were the case, I'd rather my son "lower himself to the bullies level" than get beaten up and injured. If he STARTED the fight, he's be lowering himself.

    I totally agree with you.

    Answer by SuperrMommyy at 2:45 PM on Sep. 16, 2010

  • My children are taught to fight for what is right. If they are "attacked" then they can attack back. There is no lowering them selves to the others level in our home. Lets think of it this way "GERTIE41", when Japan bombed Pearl Harbor we didn't just say oh yeah we are not going to fight them back they only hurt a little bit. If one person or persons are going to initiate a fight then they deserve to be fought back at otherwise they are going to go on thinking they can do what they want when they want. I hate people who cant stand up for them self's any more. I didn't before and I was walked all over and more. DEFEND YOURSELF IF IT IS NEEDED!!!!


    Answer by agriffinmom4 at 2:57 PM on Sep. 16, 2010

  • I use to tell my kids to walk away and avoid a fight at all costs, my son ended up being bullied all thru his school. It got so bad that we home-schooled him because he was so depressed by the 9th grade. I would now tell him , if I could do it over, don't let anyone hit you. Protect yourself as best you can to get away. Don't provoke a fight, but defend yourself. If you can't get away, give it your best shot and hopefully that person will leave you alone.

    Answer by cardinal58 at 9:30 PM on Sep. 16, 2010

  • if its a little shove then no... but the child cant be labeled as a runner or weak person early- most kids in schools are in school with eachother until at least highschool!!!! i would say if hurt badly then yes its self defense but never start fights. i was punched in the face and attached by 2 girls at a dance cause it was said i liked the same boy as they did... they made me bleed. i attached back and broke both of their noses. even though they only made me bleed and thy had worst injuries they got suspended for school i didnt and they had to pay for my injury and i didnt have to pay theirs. it was self defense.


    Answer by pinkdena at 2:41 PM on Sep. 16, 2010

  • My mom taught me not to fight back and I got hit twice when I was younger and I wish now that I stood up for myself. I want my child to defend himself so they won't mess with him again.

    Answer by giovannismom19 at 2:42 PM on Sep. 16, 2010

  • Yeah, when my son was in 2nd grade. On the bus, a BIG Jr High girl thought he said something bad and proceeded to hit his head against the school bus windows. My tiny son also got in trouble, WHY? Because he was swinging and punching her head. He knew to not just take it.

    Answer by BradenIsMySon at 2:47 PM on Sep. 16, 2010