Bullying is a sensitive topic. Not only have most of us either been bullied, know someone who has been bullied, or witnessed bullying in person or online, but everyone has their own opinions in regard to how bullying should be resolved. Some people believe that bullying can be fixed by “toughening up” or by “being a bully back.” Others feel it’s not right to fight fire with fire and that the victim should immediately tell an adult.
The biggest problem with bullying? In my opinion, it’s the fact that many cases of bullying, even when clear evidence is presented, get overlooked, and the bully gets away with their wrongdoings. It’s just as bad when the parent of the bully denies their child’s behaviors or even defends them.
One father by the name of Matt Cox, however, refused to let his 10-year-old daughter get away with bullying another student.
His daughter had already been kicked off the school bus twice for bullying and was then banned from taking the bus for three days. “Friday when my daughter brought home her paperwork for her school suspension she said, ‘Daddy you’re going to have to take me to school next week,’” Cox said in a video. “A lot of children feel the things their parents do for them is a right and not a privilege – such as parents taking their children to school in the morning, or even bus rides to school in the morning.”
Because he felt the suspension wasn’t enough and that his 10-year-old hadn’t yet learned her lesson, Cox decided to extend the punishment. For those three days, she’d been banned from taking the bus, the father made his daughter walk five miles to school and back in the cold, winter weather.
“So today my beautiful daughter is going to walk five miles to school in 36-degree weather. I know a lot of you parents are not going to agree with this, but that is alright,” said the father.
For her safety, Cox made his daughter wear appropriate attire for the winter season and slowly drove behind her to make sure she’d make it to her destination. Nevertheless, the long walk and the frigid air would teach his daughter the privilege of getting taken to school by a vehicle and give her plenty of time to think about her bullying behavior.
Although many might find the punishment repulsive, the father felt it was necessary: “Let me make this extremely clear: Bullying is unacceptable, especially in my household.”
In the end, the punishment was a success. In fact, he later edited his post and added the following:
“UPDATE: lesson learned! Still has all her extremities intact is happy and healthy and seems to have a new outlook on bullying as well as a new appreciation for some of the simple things in life she used to take for granted #HOLDOURKIDSACCOUNTABLE #STOPBULLYING”
Although some people go as far as to call Cox a bully too for the punishment he provided his daughter, the takeaway is that it’s important for parents to step in when their child bullies someone else. While it’s important that schools are involved in resolving acts of bullying, the parents should also be responsible for making sure their child gets punished, learns their lesson, and refrains from bullying again in the future.
What are your thoughts on punishing bullies? Did Matt Cox go too far?
Watch the video below, and let us know what you think!