Seung-Hui Cho, Virginia Tech Student, was bullied by fellow high school students who mocked his shyness and the strange way he talked, according to classmates. He probably heard “Sorry! Sorry! Sorry!” over and over again. “Sorry” a word forced under pressure in schools across the country. “Sorry” is what students like Cho receive over and over again, and then the perpetrator receives a time out, detention, work detail, suspension or expulsion. “Lociento” is the Spanish word for Sorry and means “I feel for you.” Picture someone forced in anger to say “Sorry!” but instead insert the phrase “I feel for you!!!” Sounds ludicrous. Now imagine someone punching a student in the nose and then shortly thereafter saying “I feel for you!” After this insincere, forced apology, the perpetrator then becomes resentful toward the victim and attempts to be more covert in hurting or provoking the victim the next time. Additionally, these punishments isolate or further creates a divide between the perpetrator from the victim rather than repair the relationship.
Sick of “Sorry!”
“Sorry, Sorry, Sorry! Sound familiar. Ask a 2nd grader what does “Sorry” mean and they will say “That I will never do it again!” However, we all know they are just sorry because they were caught and the victim knows it’s going to come their way again.
Sorry means “I feel for you,” for example at a funeral you might say, “I am sorry for your loss,” because you “feel” for their loss. If you bump into someone and they drop their books you would say, “I am sorry . . . may I help you pick up your books!” Unfortunately, “sorry” is used more for “I feel bad I was caught!”
An Apology should sound something like the following:
– “I apologize for calling you a bad name.”
– I was wrong and will try never to do it again.”
– “Will you Forgive me?”
– Victim: “I was hurt or frustrated, but I forgive you” – Important for the Victim to name the feeling.
What is the Benefits of Forgiving? Research says a forgiving victim lives 8 years longer than one who holds on to forgiveness!
How Can I Make It Up to You? Apologies are empty and still leave the victim feeling they can not trust the person as much as they did before the person hurt them. Download ways to quickly “Make it Up” to the person so they will trust you more than before they were hurt.
– If I did something mean I can do something nice for the victim.
– If I said something mean I can say 4 nice character or compliment their personality or talents.
– Rolling with Conflict with Jim West from Total Life Counseling Center
– Bullying Program
– Reduced Bullying by 50% in your Home or School within 2 weeks.
– Learn how to teach Students how to Roll with Teasing or Name Calling: “Your an idiot” Response: “That’s the Best thing I heard all day.”
– Retain Families with this program. Schools have reported an increase in Retention of families of Victims and been able to Rehabilitate some of the Bullies.
– Reduce Tardies and Discipline Problems by 30% in the first week by having students greet all their classmates by the end of each week: “Good morning Sasha! It’s good to see you! I love your blouse.”
– Incorporate positive conflict resolution plan listed above: “I apologize for hitting you, I was wrong and will try not to do it again, will you forgive me? Let me carry your back pack for the day to rebuild trust.”