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Do you teach your kids to defend themselves?

I mean if another kid hit them or called them a name do you give your kid the okay to defend his/herself? I was just on face book and a cousin of mine was telling some other people on there that her child was in the office for choking a little boy who called him the "N" word. These kids or in the 2nd grade. She thought it was funny that he choked this boy. I have been taught to stick up for myself, but this is kind of extreme. What are your thoughts?


Asked by babygirl0782 at 10:51 AM on Jun. 1, 2011 in Parenting Debate

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Answers (15)
  • My children are always allowed to defend themselves.  Now if they clocked someone because of name calling, they would get in trouble.  But if they are being physially harrassed and need to physically defend themselves, that's fine


    Answer by Zakysmommy at 10:53 AM on Jun. 1, 2011

  • Counteracting bully actions with violence is never the answer. He's only 1, but I know I will teach him at that age to tell an adult. A responsible adult, in this case his teacher. Although I don't agree with the name calling and bullying from the other side, I don't want him to think that by hitting people when they hurt his feelings that thats acceptable, because it's not. Now, if the kid were to have physically attacked him, I would probably hope that he would at least defend himself enough to get away from it and run to an adult, or hope that one of the other kids were taught that if they see someone getting bullied to get an adult. Defending yourself and lashing out against the person that hurt you are two different things.

    Answer by DJsMommy610 at 10:56 AM on Jun. 1, 2011

  • Yes, this is a bit extreme. I have taught them to stick up for them selves and each other.

    Answer by RelaxedMom2-3 at 10:52 AM on Jun. 1, 2011

  • Sounds extreme to me. Unless they are in immediate physical danger they should first tell an adult, if nothing happens they tell me. If they are in immediate physical danger they have the right to defend themselves by almost whatever means it takes.

    Answer by meooma at 10:52 AM on Jun. 1, 2011

  • Yes, but only if they have to physically defend themselves, not just because someone is teasing them. All my children will take martial arts for this reason, so they have the ability to defend themselves and the discipline to know when it is appropriate to defend themselves.

    Answer by daughteroftruth at 10:58 AM on Jun. 1, 2011

  • Yes! My children are taught never to start the problem, but they are also taught not to allow themselves to be a victim. We are firm believers in taking care of yourself and not leaning on "the system" to step in for you...

    Answer by SabrinaMBowen at 11:14 AM on Jun. 1, 2011

  • Your cousin has a sick sense of humor!!! Nice to know she has a bully for a kid!! I hope she does not live near me!

    Answer by dancer at 11:23 AM on Jun. 1, 2011

  • Our kids both take martial arts classes, so yes, they know how to defend themselves, something we feel is very important these days. They have been taught by instructors and us that it is to be used ONLY if they need to physically defend themselves, or at a tournament.
    Name calling is hurtful but not a reason to resort to physical retaliation., I have, however, seen some teachers who when told about being called names, tend to brush it off as not such a big deal. The mother in the question has some serious issues if she feels her child choking another for ANY reason is funny. As for the child, I wonder if his being called names has been an on-going thing which has been ignored by his teachers or if they even knew, and he reached the limit of his ability to deal with it & so retaliated in the manner he did. I would hope the school is now paying attention & helping this child to deal with things more appropriatly.

    Answer by meriana at 11:35 AM on Jun. 1, 2011

  • Whoa! That's out of line. I have told my son that if someone is mean to him to get away and tell an adult. And he has, he tells me. He doesn't want to tell the teacher because he thinks the bullying will get worse. Fortunately there is a zero tolerance policy at his school for that. As a new kid in a new school I expected him to have some trouble fitting in. I have taught him basic self defense... Stomp the attackers foot, flat palm to the chin.... Basically the moves I've been taught in self defense classes, but I have not taught him to throw a punch or choke somebody! Those are attack moves. Words can hurt, but until physically attacked my son knows not to get physical!

    Answer by Ms.Gwen at 12:34 PM on Jun. 1, 2011

  • Yes my kids are taught to defend themselves, but choking another kid isn't self defense. If another kid hits one of mine, they will hit back but they won't prolong it by being overly forceful.

    Answer by anon1986East at 1:49 PM on Jun. 1, 2011