QUESTION: I want to teach my kids to stand up for themselves without turning them into bullies. Aren’t there different steps that I should teach them short of physical violence?
ANSWER; Raise good strong kids who know the difference between right and wrong. What is appropriate and what is inappropriate? Teach them to be open with you when they have problems.
Teach them that most adults are good people who would help them if needed.
The boundaries for acceptable personal behavior don’t change if you are five or fifty. Good is good and bad is bad. Self-defense is self-defense. Therefore, the rules of self-defense are the same for children or adults:
You avoid trouble if possible.
You try to defuse the situation with words.
You can ask trusted adults and even friends for help.
You defend yourself with non-lethal weapons.
In some cases, you fight with your bodily weapons.
In rare cases, you fight for your life with any and all weapons to end the violence.