I came across this article which I must definitely share with you guys. Do note that sharing this does not mean I agree or disagree with it. For your convenience, I have copied the excerpts from the article here. Full article and video can be found in the link shown at the end of the post should you wish to find out further.

A new mother's world was shattered when her tiny baby developed whooping cough and died suddenly at just a month old. Now the grieving mum has shared a video of her son's last days to raise awareness of the condition so that other children do not die like he did. 

Little Riley Hughes died aged just 32 days in March, after a short battle with the disease.

He was far too young to receive the vaccine, which can only be administered at six weeks old, meaning he had no defences to fight the illness. But, after his death, his mother, Catherine Hughes, learnt that had she been vaccinated during pregnancy her son might have been able to fight the disease.

She shared the video on Facebook group Light for Riley so new parents do not have to go through the same suffering she did. Catherine who lives with her husband Greg in Perth, Australia, told the Mirror Online she was proud at the impact the video had had, especially as now all Australian states offered the vaccine to expectant mothers.

"We don't want any more babies dying from this terrible and preventable disease, it's an unnecessary heartbreak. When I was pregnant with Riley, who at the time of death was too young to be vaccinated, Australia was not offering these boosters to most pregnant women. After his death, we lobbied state governments so that now all states in Australia offer these boosters for free to pregnant women."

 

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Sharing - How to Stop a Bully

~ Posted on Monday, February 15, 2016 at 7:15 PM ~

I came across this article which I must definitely share with you guys as I'm very interested to know your thoughts on this. Do note that sharing this does not mean I agree or disagree with it. For your convenience, I have copied the excerpts from the article here:

“How can we stop a bully?” I urgently asked myself when my kid fell victim to one. “What is there to do?” Our school’s policy is simple, “Tell on the bully. We need names and details to make a case in order to confront him or her.” After the information was given – with fear of being seen as a weakling, a weirdo or a snitch -- the bully was summoned and cried, seemingly remorsefully. But in reality, there was little change. She neither repaired or even attempted to repair the trail of damaged relationships nor did she completely stop the bullying. Before I suggest a more effective response to a bully, let’s become clear about why this cruel behavior exists in the first place.

Nobody likes a bully, so why do we have so many? And why do we enable and even get a kick out of bullies, both in the political arena and in social settings such as schools? Most of us choose to stay away from bullies. After all, we could be next, right after the bully is finished with the public shaming, pushing, hitting, and shushing her or his chosen victim(s) and opponent(s). Nevertheless, we have more bullies than ever, male and female, who can unleash their hostility with new, technological weapons that can stab a person in the heart without a trace of real blood on social media. It’s good to be a bully when you can text and delete instead of box and run.

Just to clarify, bullying is not just any aggressive behavior, such as when someone cuts in front of your car, even when your very life is endangered. Bullying is an aggressive behavior with the aim to intimidate and harm another, repeatedly over time and with a more powerful person or group attacking a less powerful one. While it happens more frequently in countries that promote violence and that are intolerant of inter-individual differences, bullying is everywhere. Even in other species: chimpanzees do it; dogs do it; mice do it.

We bully when we feel threatened by someone who stands out and/or who seems to have a competitive edge over so-perceived limited resources. So, nobody likes a bully, but everybody likes to be empowered or be in the shadow of a person who is. Power equals access to resources, which can be sexual attention (I want to be wanted), attention from a peer group and powerful adults (I want status and favors), attention period (I want to be famous), economic opportunities and money (I want to be rich and powerful). If human beings feel insecure and believe that they can get away with bullying themselves to power, they will.

I don’t think that the primitive survival strategy of bullying can be eradicated by placing the burden solely on the victim. In other words, it is not enough to ask the bullied person to step forward and be courageous. While this rudimentary response might suffice in some cases, it does not in many others, while also blaming those who do not step forward. A more effective response to a bully has to take into account:

- a deeper understanding of our biological nature and the meaning of and propensity for bullying
- the specific personal reasons for why the bully and his or her enablers feel disempowered, threatened or unsure of themselves
- the responsibility of the community to stop and prevent bullying by building powerful coalitions around the victim.

Surely, sometimes a bully can be stopped by being especially skillful and demonstrating independence. “Stop that! I don’t like it,” or “Don’t think I am afraid to tell if you continue to act out your insecurity on me,” might have an impact. But once again, if our focus is predominantly on the victim, we won’t make much progress, especially when the victim is young.

Human beings have the capacity to understand their biological nature and can go way beyond it. There is something even greater than our evolved animal instincts: we can become aware. Only when we learn to see ourselves clearly, when we acknowledge our animal nature and transcend it at the same time, can we expect to prevent bullying.

What is there to do? Surely we cannot wait for awareness in others. We need to respond to a bully in the present moment.

How to Stop a Bully

First of all, let’s empower the victim by sharing the insights about the primitive behavior of bullying which is powered by feelings of weakness, insecurity, cowardice, and/or the perception of scarce resources. Knowledge is power because it changes the story we tell ourselves. While the bullied person will begin to de-identify as a victim, she or he will likely also discover his or her power that threatened the bully in the first place. This knowledge should also be shared with the bully, who needs to know that bullying is proof of fear, that is the fear of facing ones own infirmity and pain, of not being or having enough.

Second, let’s demand that the bully does not merely apologize, but is obliged to look into her or his behavior. The bully might have been bullied him or herself and is in dire need of interventions. There should be follow-up meetings to assure that the bully repairs the resulting damage no matter what the causes are. We should demand a policy change that imposes mandatory counseling for those who engage in cruel behavior as to find the underlying personal reasons for it. Crocodile tears and promises should not impress those involved. What is needed is demonstrable action for a significant time after the occurrence of bullying.

Third, we should not only summon the bully, but his or her primary caregivers. This should be standard procedure, not just in horrific cases. Along the same line, by-standers and enablers need also to be confronted. Kids and young adults need to be taught to stand up against bullies, age-appropriately. If we want the victim to heal and de-identify as a victim, we need to take responsibility and provide a support group for him or her. We need to find allies and align powerful peers and adults who take an active role in the process of reestablishing the balance of power. The victim must not only feel that she or he can get the support in case, but that she or he has a proactive type of support on an on-going basis.

Fourth, all parties ought to look into the contributing factors of an atmosphere of intolerance and aggression. If schools promote competitiveness from an early age on, dividing kids according to their test taking skills, offering special classes, discussing college in elementary school and the “rush to nowhere” in general, we ought not to be surprised that kids start to elbow each other. We need to look at racism, xenophobia, homophobia, and other discriminative behavior and engage in open discussions. Where is the dialogue about uncomfortable truths?

Fifth, we need to address the fact that a myriad of people are unhappy and highly medicated, suffering from depression and anxiety, triggered by the great recession, social injustice, glorified aggression in movies and actual war fair, extremely high divorce-rates and dysfunctional families, inertia, anorexic role-models and reality TV stars whose one God is money. Happy people are the exception, not the norm and are therefore an easy target for those who are fashionably unhappy. The least we can do is to be mindful about mental health and the lack of thereof.

 

Do you have anything else to add?


** Note: I have disabled the commenting feature on my blog engine thanks to all the spammers who happily spam my blog every day. If you wish to ask me any questions, you can find me at my Facebook page (I'm there almost everyday) or just drop me an email if you wish to maintain some anonymity.

I came across this article which I must definitely share with you guys as I'm very interested to know your thoughts on this. Do note that sharing this does not mean I agree or disagree with it. To view the video on YouTube, you can click on the images below. For your convenience, I have copied the excerpts from the article here:

The amateur video apparently shows three people approaching and then attacking the family who are enjoying a day out at a lake in Russia. According to reports, the attackers – a mother and daughter and another woman - were outraged when they saw bottles of vodka strewn around. One of the woman was breastfeeding a tiny baby and barely able to stand.

 Taking matters into their own hands, they launched an attack on the two who were with the children on the shores of Lake Gusinoye, Russia. They also filmed the incident. Narrating, the camera operator says the adults are in a "constant drunken state" and unfit to raise the three children with them.

The narrator’s mum then launches a physical attack on the two drunken women, slapping their faces and hitting them with objects. 

The allegedly drunk mum, who was breastfeeding her three-month-old, is hit several times by the woman, who asks: "What are you doing? Look at all this alcohol." The camera pans to show several empty vodka bottles lying nearby.

Shockingly, a young boy and his sister watch the violence unfold and the girl also covers her eyes to avoid seeing her own mum being beaten.

 The narrator then asks her own mother to stop the attack, telling the terrified children to get into her car. Reports suggest the three children were taken to a local hospital by the women, where they were found with alcohol in their system.

Police launched an investigation into the allegedly drunk women, but not those who appeared to carry out the attack. Force spokesman Oleg Vasiliev says the drunken mum was fined for "dereliction of parental duties", while authorities also inspected her home. He says the three children were found to have adequate sleeping quarters, and were also well fed. The mum has reportedly promised to improve her behaviour and parenting, or face having her newborn child taken from her custody.

Meanwhile, the video’s author and her mum have been criticised for the attack. Viewers in Russia say that although their intentions were good, it was not right to attack the mum and grandma in front of the young children. This argument was echoed by Commissioner for Children's Rights, Tatiana Vezhevich, who says the two older siblings may require counselling.

 

What do you think?


** Note: I have disabled the commenting feature on my blog engine thanks to all the spammers who happily spam my blog every day. If you wish to ask me any questions, you can find me at my Facebook page (I'm there almost everyday) or just drop me an email if you wish to maintain some anonymity.