During my “Easing the Teasing” programs for parents and educators, I am often asked, “Is teasing on the rise?” Although I have no official data or statistics
to support this, it seems that we are certainly hearing more and more about
teasing and bullying. Recently, I came across the work of Eli Newberger, who is the author of The Men They Will Become. In his book, he defines teasing as the “active display of disrespect.” Using this definition, I can say that it appears that teasing is definitely on the rise because of the disrespect clearly evident in today’s world.
I have witnessed disrespect at shopping malls, on the roads, in movie theaters, and on youth athletic fields. Disrespect certainly continues online and in
social media. We have just experienced a brutal election campaign filled with
insults, name-calling, smears, and mockery. The content on television and in movies is often filled with rudeness, offensive behavior, disregard, and verbal aggression.
At the root of put-downs and disregard of others because of racial, cultural, sexual, intellectual and physical differences is disrespect.
Is disrespect on the rise? Do you think it has become “acceptable” in
today’s society. I am very interested in your opinions and examples you have
About the blogger: Judy S. Freedman, a licensed clinical social worker and bullying prevention specialist, is the author of Easing the Teasing – Helping YourChild Cope with Name-Calling, Ridicule, and Verbal Bullying.'
She lectures and conducts workshops for parents, educators, and
mental health professionals throughout the country. She was recently honored as
Illinois SchoolSocial Worker of the Year at the Midwest
School Social Work Conference in Green Lake, Wisconsin.
Learn more about Judy and her work at www.easingtheteasing.com.