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February 15, 2013

What to do about mean kids

NORMAN — Q: I’m in the fifth grade, and my friends are acting very mean. I’m afraid they’re going to start being mean to me. Why are they doing this?

— Courtni, Moore

Dear Courtni,

We are so thrilled that you understand what mean behavior is and are so sorry you are going through this. You are probably exactly right — the path that most mean people take is they turn on anyone who they can intimidate (scare).

Sometimes when kids start feeling insecure about themselves or are being treated badly at home, they do mean things to try and make themselves feel better. Sometimes they do it out of jealousy.

No matter what the reason, never ever become a part of it. Don’t ever be afraid to tell someone who is being mean that they are being mean or to stop. Don’t be afraid to stand up for what you know is right. If others are being hurt or intimidated, don’t be afraid to tell an adult. We have told kids for many years the hardest part of growing up is discontinuing friendships you no longer need to be a part of. Surround yourself with people who make you laugh, make you happy and make you be a better person. Also, don’t be afraid to talk to your parents or school counselor about this. Email us back if you need us.

Q: My husband and I read your column every week. You have such good answers. We often say, “Why didn’t we think of that?” We read at the end of your column that you are each mothers. Were your kids perfect when they were growing up, since you knew the right things to do and say?

— Cecily and Steve, Norman

Dear Cecily and Steve,

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