Why do some kids hurt other kids?

kids hurt two boys fight

I get terribly stressed out when I hear stories about children getting hurt and tend to adopt an ‘ignorance is bliss’ attitude to protect myself and my children from these horrific events. At times this shield evaporates, like when I heard about the rape of an 8 year old little girl by 12 to 14 year old boys in her school. That’s when everything else that is happening comes into focus. I’m also talking about the rape of a pregnant woman by 11 men (11!) and the murder of at least 4 women found over the past weekend.

In  my frustration and horror I hit out  at the system, the justice system, the education system, the work ethic of teachers and child carers, whether anyone in this country cares about anything else besides themselves. Then I realise that the real question for me is – where do kids learn these things from?  What are their parents like?  Are they taught to be hurtful, hateful, discriminatory people?  How is it fun to watch another human being being tortured, humiliated and abused?  And that’s when I decided that there actually is something I can do, maybe not to change the world (unless I run for President!), but to hopefully ensure that my own children never grow up thinking or behaving that way.  Ever.  Because there’s a chance that these abusive kids are lacking in something, lacking love and guidance, seeking affirmation of themselves in the world, trying to find someone to notice them, all be it in a negative way.

The solution then, for me personally and for my own kids, is to be more present.  To listen more, to give my full attention, to be a good role model, to wake my kids up with a smile on my face, to put them to bed with a story of love, to teach them to be kind, not because we have to but because it feels so good.  It’s hard work being happy and patient all the time, especially with all the pressures of life.  I am privileged (and not so privileged but that’s a story for another article) to live across the road from my kids’ school.  I’ve seen parents hoot all the way to the school, wait impatiently for their kids and then drive off in a huff because they had to wait a few seconds.  Is that child going to feel happy to go home?  Or would he rather stay out on the streets or somewhere else where he doesn’t feel like he’s a burden.

I’ve chosen to make a promise to myself that no matter what goes on in my day, that my actions and my attitude towards my kids always needs to be one of care, thoughtfulness, compassion and all things good for their little hearts.  It’s impossible for me not to know what goes on in the world, especially with all the cruelty and craziness wars, famine, droughts, Donald Trump and all things negative – things that I’ll never understand or agree with.  Not to stress myself out with but to enable me to teach my kids about what’s not acceptable, about engaging with them to see what they think and in this way gauge whether I am in fact doing a good job being a parent.  That’s what it’s about right, growing great leaders, pillars of their communities and well balanced, sane individuals.

Click here to find a list of other articles written by Fatima Kazee

Click here to find Protective Behaviours, an NGO dedicated to the goal of creating a safe environment for kids and adults.

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Author

Fatima Kazee

Fatima Kazee

Fatima Kazee, mum to a teenager, a pre-teen and ‎a little princess.  Part-time wife to a fanatical fisherman. She’s addicted to sneakers, anything chocolatey & is an invaluable member of the Jozikids and Kznkids team.

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13 Responses

  1. Hi Fatima, I liked this part:

    "I’ve chosen to make a promise to myself that no matter what goes on in my day, that my actions and my attitude towards my kids always needs to be one of care, thoughtfulness, compassion and all things good for their little hearts."

    In fact, if people would do this to their fellow man (apologies for the slight sexist noun) I think the world would be a much better place

    1. Hi Fatima

      in my case I fight physically with my 15 year old almost every day .He doesn’t want to do house chores,likes to be more with friends and curse the two girls on daily basis.

      how to be the best mom and avoid conflict with my son?

      1. Hi Dianah, I hear you and I’m guessing many moms of teens have this issue (I have yet to get there) My best advice would be to change your approach with him. Be positive, be nice, change the way you react to situations with kindness yet being firm. Flying off the handle is also usually the first reaction I have and being patient doesn’t come easily to me but with practice and time, hopefully it will help.

        Set limits about time with friends and try to have more structure in what the kids do each day. I know it’s hard with work and bigger kids but give it a try. Good luck!

  2. Hi Fatima, also agree 100%. As a Mother especially, one has to stay on top of things 100% of the time (well almost). Nurturing, listening, watching and guiding them (the children), because it can be very easy to slide off the track and before you know it the child gets lost and becomes part of the madness that is now ruining homes and society as a whole. if each one plays their part properly and accordingly, the world would become a better place

  3. Words of Wisdom indeed Fatima. Thanks for the reminder. Often we are so caught up in our highly-strung lives that we don’t realise how our rejection and irritation (towards our kids) can negatively impact on them… I need to make that promise to myself too!

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