Haleh Banani – Bullying With Q and A

Haleh Banani
AI: Summary © The speakers emphasize the importance of acknowledging and empowering parents' behavior during bullying, dec Pakistaning children, listening to others' emotions, and being gentle and compassionate in response to bullying. They stress the need for parents to educate children on their emotions and be mindful of their behavior. The importance of teaching empathy and affirmations for parents and children is emphasized, as well as the need for parents to empower children to grow and develop healthy behavior.
AI: Transcript ©
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All right, hello alikom Welcome to the parenting class.

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What I have noticed is after blog post elections, right, there's been a lot of a lot of stress, a lot of people have written to me talking about how we can talk to our kids, there is a lot of incidents of bullying that has been happening. And so I really feel like this is an important topic. So I decided to discuss this issue today as far as how to deal

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with a lot because there's been this collective trauma that a lot of people have gone through that what is going to happen, that feeling of uncertainty. And, and I think that it's really critical that we address this with our kids. And I, I thought it would be easier to do it in a class setting rather than trying to address each person individually. And for those of those people tuning in, that are not in the US and they may not be going through and thinking how is this relevant to our issue? You know, bullying always occurs regardless of the you know, political situation. So you could be somewhere any part of the world and you find that actually, the the first thing that comes

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to mind when you think of bullying is that they're going to school, and some older kids are picking on a younger kid, but a lot of the clients that I have, they actually complain about bullying that happens within their family. Okay, so for those of you who are not in the US, this is going to be very relevant because the bullying occurs sometimes with with siblings, okay, there's sibling, there is sometimes bullying that occurs and teasing that family members due to a child. I mean, just last week, I had several clients who complained about the trauma they experience from family members picking on them, whether it was on their looks on their intelligence, or lack of intelligence,

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whatever it is, so what I'm sharing with you is going to be very relevant, not just post election in the US, which we're all focused on, but anywhere you can just become more focused on what to do how to recognize bullying. And once you you know that that has occurred,

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what you can do to help your kids Okay, so that's, that's the aim. But before we started the job, the job the side to be sunshine at home last week, Did y'all do that? And

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the more was that the goal was to be more of a sunshine, be more sunshine and be fun and happy and all of that that was our goal last week, so maybe, okay, you didn't apply?

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Okay, so let this week again, focus on that. Right. So one of the first things and then prior to getting into the whole bullying I wanted to talk about Many people asked me about how do we explain this to our kids? How can we explain that he you know, got elected by the behavior that he had and, and I think we have to take it back to the Quran and Sunnah that we base our behavior we base on what is acceptable, unacceptable based on Quran and Sunnah not necessarily who's in power or who's popular. And we see that whether it's in schools or in societies, those who are less popular are not necessarily on the on the right path, right. So I think it's really important to explain to our kids

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and teach them that we distinguish just because someone who is famous is doing a certain Act does not make it permissible. We base our behavior, our morals, our conduct on the Quran and Sunnah. And I think this is a very important thing, because a lot of people are saying, Okay, well, he said it so I could say it. I mean, the, the there's just been unbelievable rise in bullying, in schools in racist remarks, so many things that are happening. And somehow it's being justified because, well, our leader has said that and so we have to be very careful with what do we define as acceptable and unacceptable? And I think in in the Middle East, we have

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we're quite experienced in in knowing that our leaders are Knesset not necessarily our role models, right? It's not a new thing to us. We can very easily distinguish that. Okay, well, there's corruption here. There is lack of morals. We don't necessarily look to them.

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For our, our behavior and our conduct, right, I think is somehow new here. And it's a little bit shocking to people system. But I think that's why we always have to base it on, you know, we do things, and we conduct ourselves, not according to what's the most popular thing, because what we see is that society is constantly evolving, what is acceptable, or what is completely immoral, like, let's say, 30 years ago, what was completely immoral, is now completely is the coolest thing to do. So we can't base it on popular trends. And that's why it's so important to base our, you know, our role models are the, you know, the the Prophet sallallahu alayhi, salam, the, the Sahaba, the wives

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of the Prophet, if we make them our role models, then we're not swayed by the behavior of the masses. So I think that's a very important concept, and how we need to decipher between what is, you know, what is good, what is acceptable, and what is not. And also pick and choose, I remember one of the most important things that my, my mother taught me being from a different cultures, like, take the best of both worlds, by with, don't just abandon your ethnicity, and just embrace everything here. And, and, and don't just demonize a, you know, group of people, it's just about, see what is best in each person, you know, and take those good qualities, and do away with the negative traits.

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And I think we need to be able to decipher that our kids need to be able to do that. Because if not, if they're just swayed, or pulled by whatever is in fashion, or whatever is the popular trend, and they just follow whatever is going on around them, then they can really fall into a lot of problems. So having the ability, you know, to distinguish between right and wrong, that is a critical thing that we need to instill in our kids. And that's why critical thinking is so important, right? Don't just tell them shut up and listen, for Just do as I say, not as I do. It's about let's analyze this, let's think about why this is not acceptable, let's, let's you know, discuss it let's have a very

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adult like discussion, so that they get accustom to the analysis of it, a lot of times what happens is, because we're training our kids to just be quiet, obey, and do as we say, they don't have the skills. So when they get in a, in a setting where they are,

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where a group of people are telling them to do something, they'll just totally go for it. Because they're geared towards obedience. They're not geared towards questioning, they're not geared towards, like, let me analyze this, let me decipher whether it's right or wrong. So As parents, we really need to instill in them the ability to decipher between right and wrong, and how to stick to what they believe is right. And, and so that that's an important concept to to discuss with our kids. Okay. All right. So now going to the bullying, first of all, let's talk about some of the signs that your your child is being bullied. Okay, what do you think are some of the signs

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maybe they're now they're down, right? So you find that their mood is down, maybe they're they're withdrawing, withdrawing from friends withdrawing from their activities, go into the rooms all the time, feeling sad, but that's like typical teenager will go to school. So don't mistaken that for being bullied, but it's just the idea of seeing a change in their mood.

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Right, so they may lash out. So they have been, they have been bullied, they're frustrated, they're angry. So if you find that they are, they're lashing out and is uncharacteristic of them, at you at their siblings, you know, maybe breaking things having a certain reaction, you have to kind of instead of just getting angry because we have a tendency to see a behavior and what do we do we just are like, you know, cut it out. Stop it, this is wrong. Maybe we punish it. But then it stops there. We need to dig deeper as parents we need to dig deep and find out what's causing all this. What's causing the nap him not wanting to go with his buddies when they they're all going out to play

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soccer. What's wrong with that he is his overreacting to you know to little things. Don't just end the behavior don't just end the symptom, find out what's the root cause of this behavior. Okay, so sometimes you can see that if his group's circle of friends suddenly change. Let's say he just stops hanging out with a

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group of people, or he gets really upset after a text message or after a phone call, you need to inquire about these things right? Many times, we're not even in tune with what's going on, right? We're in our own worlds, like so many. So many of the young adults that I, that I do therapy with, they complain that their parents are so consumed with social media, you know, we're always on top of the kids like too much, too much PlayStation too much phone, but we are guilty of that, right. And so first of all, we have to be off our phones, we have to be in tune, watching, observing and comparing, if we didn't know how they were normally, then we're not going to see a change in their

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behavior, right. So that's, that's going to be really critical. And if you see that, they're suddenly making very negative comments about themselves. So a drop and a drop in self esteem, if you feel that they always criticize themselves, or they don't feel like they can do things where before they did, okay, so you have to just become in tune with that. Okay. And also, it's their sleep pattern or eating pattern changes, if you feel that they are either sleeping excessively, like I just had this one

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teenager that I was doing therapy with, and she's she is so in such a state of depression that she's sleeping almost all the time. Now, a parent needs to recognize this and see, okay, this is not normal. It's either excessive sleeping, or insomnia, where they can't fall asleep, maybe they're having nightmares and getting up. And so just being in tune with that, because that's one of the signs of depression. Okay, so a lot of times when someone is being bullied, they start feeling really bad, their, their self esteem goes down, they feel hurt, they feel worthless, okay?

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If they start making statements, like, you know, life doesn't matter, or y'all will be better off without me, these are some suicidal ideation, people do it, unfortunately. I mean, there are many clients I've worked with that they have considered, you know, considered suicide, and because of bullying, and sometimes the bullying is in school, and I can't tell you the impact that it has, I think a lot of times as, as parents, we, we kind of be little if we don't recognize the impact that it has. We think oh, God just grow up just deal with it. So what they're teasing you, but it has a very long lasting psychological effect, a negative impact, the number of clients who have come in

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for, for the fact that they have been bullied throughout their schooling, it changes the person that they are, right, I had one, one girl who was placed in school early, so she was younger than everyone shorter than everyone slower than everyone. And like for 13 years, she was just bullied by everyone in in her class. And this has left her so broken. Okay. So we have to recognize when and other other individuals who tell me that you know, they were teased about their looks. I just had a girl tell me that because she was teased about her looks by her classmates. She wanted to do complete surgery and extreme makeover it that she is a beautiful girl. Like when I looked at her, I

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was like, I was admiring her beauty. And she goes, yes, I need to you know, I need to do reconstructive surgery. I need like, I need to do liposuction. And this is like she hasn't even you know, she's just in her 20s. So we really have to be aware of this, we can't ignore it. And the quicker we address it, the better results are gonna get. Okay. Any questions so far? Yeah.

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teenager, so how old is a teenager 14 boy, boy, like a 14 year old boy and I can't tell if it's hormonal. Or if it's just sibling rivalry with little sister like, sometimes they'll get on famously. Other times they'll be at each other's throats. Okay, and she'll shut down and be in his room. So, I don't know. Okay. And when I asked about school, if I ask specific questions, he does get bothered. Okay. So you're you want to decipher between hormonal teenager, which a lot of times they have these behavior, right? They will go into their room, they'll act out all of that, or someone who has been bullied. And I think the importance is, the important part of this is connect

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connecting with them on an emotional level, like having having this kind of whether it's friendship, or that closeness, where you can ask questions where either they talk to you or they have someone else and I think that's a very important thing. I know that friends of mine who are older

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have like raise their kids. They're all like married with kids now. But one of the things that she says like sometimes when I felt like I couldn't reach my boys, I couldn't they didn't want to share, they didn't want to talk, she would have someone in the community who was maybe younger, a, an aunt and uncle, not necessarily an honor uncle, but someone in the community that they could connect with. And you could have them open up because a lot of times, teenagers will shut down, they will shut down with their parents, but you got to make sure that you provide them enough alternatives by younger, cool, older mentors that they could turn to. Okay. All right. So, first of all, one of the

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things that, you know, Allah tells us that we are going to be tested, okay. Allah says,

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Why Nabil Lewin Nakhon vishay in mental health he went to he went XM metal, um, while he went to see what the metal rods were batshit is solid 18, we will surely test you with something of fear and hunger and loss of wealth and lives and fruit, but give good tidings to the patient. This third batara i 155. So, this is the house that is mentioned here that there might be fear. And we need to address this with you know, with our kids, that it's it's natural, it's normal. And but how do you go about dealing with this, so we're talking about a bullying that is happening sometimes with, with our children, and, and knowing that everything that is happening in our life is a test. So

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getting our kids to understand this is such an important concept, knowing that everything that happens is a test. And I love this one time, I think it was I think we had missed a flight or something that had happened. And my little girl who was 10, she came in she goes, You know what, this is just the test, we're being tested. And something bad could have happened. I love the fact that she immediately went to that rather than being upset about the incident, we have to recognize everything that happens in our life with with our relationships with incidents, that it's a test, and we have to focus on passing the test, right. So as far as one of the first things that we can do

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for our kids, is, if you if you find out that they are being bullied is number one is listen to them. Okay, listen, I think that listening is an art that is not mastered by many people. Okay, very few people know how to listen, we had a whole semester in our master's program that taught us how to listen, and how to make people feel like they're heard and understood, because that's a big part of therapy, right? If someone comes in, that's why sometimes they just feel good. And you don't even have to have a sub It is like I felt like I finally someone finally understood me, right. So it's about making your child feel that they are heard. And one of the best ways you can do that. Listen

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to them, hear them out. And also repeat what they're saying, this is a great technique, even with your with your spouse, guy, when something happens. You You hear them out, and then you repeat it. And sometimes I find that in therapy, I will have the husband and wife You know, I do marriage counseling, and I have them repeat it. And it's very, it's very robotic. You know, I tell Oh, I hear you saying that you are angry when I don't call you right. And it's very robotic, unnatural. I'm putting the words in their mouth. But then I asked the sponsor, like, how did that make you feel? Like, I feel great. I feel like he finally gets me, he understands. So even when it's in a situation

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like that a person really gets that satisfaction. So we need to do that with our kids when they're talking because a lot of times we're zoned out. Alright, my middle child, Kadeem has a tendency to talk and talk and talk. And I'll say at the end is like, yeah, Mama.

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And he's asking, and it's so easy, let's say to tune out right and then not be engaged. So being engaged and repeating what they're saying is very important to make them feel heard and understood. Okay, so try definitely to do that. And then,

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you know, having that gentleness with them, not dismissing because a lot of times, kids won't go to their parents because it's like, you know, what, if I go to them, they're just gonna be like, this is this is stupid. Forget it. What are you talking about? Don't you know kids are dying in Africa. Oh, and are they just remind them of like extreme examples, meaning that your problem is irrelevant. It's stupid. Get over it, right. We don't want to be dismissive like that. If they're

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coming to us we have to have that gentleness and Allah says in the Quran to the Prophet sallallahu sallam, and if you had been rude in speech and harsh and heart, they would have disbanded from you. Right? So it's about following that example the prophetic tradition of being gentle of being, being loving and compassionate that that nature if we can embody that if we want to, like follow the Sunnah, let's follow the Sunnah and being compassionate, and being kind and lenient, because a lot of times were very adamant about picking up the Sunnah, right?

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Maybe it's the, whether it's the clothing, whether it's the rituals, the way you pray, how you pray, all of these things. Were very adamant about the sun. But then what about the sun being lenient? What about the sun not being loving and compassionate and all of all these beautiful characteristics that made the Prophet Muhammad Sallallahu Sallam so successful? Right, it was his mannerism. It wasn't just, you know,

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giving out a whole bunch of orders. It wasn't just that haraam police, right? It was about his wisdom and his compassion, and his ability to make every single person feels valued, important. Loved, right. So as a parent, let's follow that son. Okay. And, and so when, when your child is talking to you, you ask them say, you know, what can I do to be helpful? Don't just automatically bulldoze over what they're saying. And you know, you go in and you take over, just ask, what is it that you know, you what, what can you do to help the situation. And then, and it's very important to be supportive, and kind and be neutral when they're sharing with you. And, you know, in the class I

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was telling you about, as far as how we were taught the listening skills, part of it was not overreacting to what we hear. Okay, so it's kind of like, as they say, put a poker face by not be reactionary. And I can tell you, I have heard it all in my therapy sessions, and I don't show any reaction. So someone could say, you know, I took off, took off my head job, and I went to a club last night, I'm like, Okay, and then, and then what happened? And what was your experience? You know, it's just very nonchalant not being this. Because if you react like, Oh, my God, what is that going to make them feel?

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Why? You're being

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judgmental, right? Because if you're like, Oh,

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what is wrong with you? Right? They're gonna be like, Oh, my God, I feel so like, then they start feeling shame. And they feel guilty, and they'll totally shut down. So I could hear absolutely anything. And I would just be like, no reaction, right? So it's like, Okay, so what, what made you do that? What did you get out of it? What's happening? And when you do that, it really keeps the conversation going. And I remember actually, when I was, I think I was in 10th grade, I told I told my mom, I was very close to my mom, she was like, a best friend to me. And I said, Well, I want to be able to tell you everything. So please don't react in a way that would make me stop sharing.

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Okay, so anytime. There was nothing and never anything major, but it was, whenever I would want to talk to her, she'd be like, yes.

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Shout a big smile, took a deep breath. And hamdulillah was never anything. Like I said anything major, but it was just the idea of her wanting to accommodate, and me wanting to make sure that I can share and I knew that I would shut down if there was, you know, a reaction. So make sure as a as a parent, that we're not overreacting to the things that they're sharing with us, you know, and then definitely don't blame your child, right? If they're being bullied as like, well, it's probably you something you did look within. Or you're just say, because it's a very painful thing to go through. I think that for those individuals I've worked with who have been bullied. It's extremely, they're

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extremely traumatized. Right? And for you to say, to put the blame on them, they're a victim. They're a victim of this bullying. And when you make it seem as if they did something, you brought this on to yourself, you're annoying, you have this on, then you're no longer there.

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That you are no longer there supporter, right. You're not their champion, and we need to be the champions of our kids. So if they're experiencing something, don't belittle it, don't dismiss it, listen to them, make them feel heard, and, and recognize that they're the victim here. It's not something that they brought on to them. Any comments?

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If my child did something wrong,

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and as you said, I showed, like I was mutual, I did not show any bad reaction or anything like, Okay, so how do you deal with it? How do you correct his behavior and tell me what you did is wrong? Without

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without being judgmental? Okay, so if they're being bullied, and you feel like what they did was wrong. It's not about bullying about okay.

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Right? Obviously, we I mean, our role as parents is to teach them correct appropriate behavior, we do have to, we do have to teach them. I mean, it's not just about Oh, just sitting and watching and, but it's just the way you go about it, it's the methodology of helping them understand that you're not just out to criticize or attack, I think a lot of times, as parents, we have a tendency to, to just criticize, and we look for negativities. But then we're not as vigilant when we see good behavior, how many times have you seen your child do something that is good, or, you know, while they're doing their homework, while they're behaving, while they're having that sibling

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love between, and you go, and you recognize that it's rare? Right? So try to balance it out, right, with recognizing the good things that they do. And then if there is something that needs to be corrected, is the methodology of approaching them, you know, I noticed that, you know, you're you're doing this, and this is the consequence, and but get them engaged, try to as, especially as they get older, I think, getting them to discuss a problem, you empower them, and you teach them the correct ways of resolving issues, let's say later on in their marriage, right? Because if you don't if they don't go through that process of discussing, and then let's see, what is the good solution? What can

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I do? How can I fix this, if they don't go through that training, then they're not going to be able to solve their own problems. So instead of just correcting, get, you know, get them in a discussion, and let them generate their ideas, let them generate that, because what I find is that even like, let's say, as a therapist,

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when when I get the person to reach a conclusion, or they come up with their own ideas, or their own are standing filarmonica,

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they take ownership of it so much more than just being told what to do. Same thing with our kids, right? If they generate the ideas and the answers, they're going to take ownership of it, and they're going to

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follow through much better. Okay. All right. So, the second thing is, you know, don't retaliate against the bully or the family.

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Okay, if your child is the one who is bullying, I think, definitely you need to look,

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look within a lot, I mean, look, look within the family dynamics, okay? Because a lot of times, the bullying occurs because of one of two things. One, they're modeling that behavior that they're seeing, you know, sometimes parents will lose their temper, take it out on their child, and so that child will learn, okay, when I get angry, this what I what I do, so it might be modeling a behavior, or it could be from some level of neglect, okay, so they're being they feel, they feel neglected. And so they are taking it off in a school. So I think it's very important to look at the family dynamics, and find out especially during those developmental years, what happened, right, what

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happened or what didn't happen, and then try to address those things by so it takes a little bit of more depth and more understanding when your child is causing it rather than being the victim of the bully.

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Right? What the sister is saying sometimes the child who is being bullied becomes the bully, right? If it's not addressed, right, that's why we have to be so in tune with our kids recognize when they're hurting when they're angry when all this is going on with them. The sooner you address it, the better right? Because it's kind of like if you have if your arm is bleeding or you let's say for example, you broke a leg, okay? And you just ignore it. Now if you go and you get your get it, your bones align and you get it addressed. It will not only get better, but actually a broken bone, that bone once

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healed is stronger than the other bones. Right? So it's all about taking immediate action. Because when when it's ignored, imagine never addressing a broken arm or a broken leg, what happens, you will always suffer from it. Same thing with emotional issues, emotional issues, if they're not addressed from early on. I mean, that's why I'll have someone who is 4050 years old, and they are in so much misery, because of things that happened when they were like eight years old. Right? If that was addressed at eight, they would have been, you know, that would have been just cleaned up fixed, and they could have had like, a much happier life. So we want at least we can learn from this,

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right? And learn from this experience. So don't retaliate against the boy because we never should be revengeful right, we should never be revengeful Now, obviously, we're, we don't have that mentality of Okay, turn the others, you hit me hit me on the other side, it's not that mentality. But we also don't want to be aggressive and going after the the bully themselves or the family. So make sure that you're not in any way revengeful if when things like that happen, and then you have to number three is coach your child on how to react. I had one

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I had a one high school boy who was very, very meek, very shy, and had what is called Asperger's, which is a very mild form of autism, versus like, socially awkward. And he was off course, like the, the one who was bullied all the time, he was bullied, and he was being hit. And so asked them, you know, what, what do you do in a situation when, when they're when they're hitting you? And he said, with a very soft voice? Because I say, Please don't hit me. I said, Oh, come on. No one's gonna listen to you saying please don't hit me two people who are bullies is not going to be effective, right? I especially in a man's rolling I have two teenage boys. And I you know, I understand that

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things. If you show weakness, you will be trampled over you know, so there, you have to, you know, we have to train our kids to be strong to be confident, if someone is bullying him to, to stand up to that fight. I had to coach him.

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I had to coach them in like, you know, you react, you have to react, like Stop it, you know, you got to be tough. You can't be like, oh, could you please stop beating me up? You know, that's gonna make them beat you up more. Right? And, and bullies tend to pick on people who they get a reaction from. Okay, so it's either a reaction, and I'm sure you all see this with your kids? And how like the older one bullies the little one, you know, they're teasing the little one. What happened? They say something very annoying, because they want to hear a reaction. And what is the solution to something like that? When in order to stop that is like you tell the younger one, just pretend it doesn't faze

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you pretended? Like it, just whistle, pretend it doesn't bother you. And after a while, what would happen? The older one will keep doing it. No reaction, do it again, no reaction, do it again, no reaction is like this boring. Move on. Right? But what happens is that when the child is who's doing the bullying, does the bullying and gets that reaction, you know, or just screams or does anything, then they feel like, Oh, this is fun. I'm getting you know, some people get their thrills life.

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So it's about giving either the way they react, either it's like, they're reacting in a like, not in the way I was telling you like saying, you know, stop at this, not what, not in a strong way, but just kind of like whining or screaming or something like that. They also choose

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choose kids that take that bullying to heart, you know, like, they're bullied, and then they just like, you know, their shoulders by and they just stay totally internalized, and they feel so weak. So they basically prey on weak individuals. And, and it's really, and those individuals who don't stand up for themselves. I just had a client last week, who, who told me that they were bullied for, you know, for a couple of years. And then she finally stood up to that, you know, finally stood up to them. And that was the end of it. That was the last time she got bullied. And most bullies are like that, where all it takes is a show of strength. And just saying just merely standing up for

00:34:44 --> 00:34:59

yourself. Because if you don't if you just keep taking and taking and taking if they're going to continue, right. So and that's why so how does the person how does a child stand up for themselves? What does

00:35:00 --> 00:35:04

require, what does it require? How do they have to feel about themselves?

00:35:06 --> 00:35:08

strong, confident, strong.

00:35:09 --> 00:35:12

How can we as parents instill that in them,

00:35:13 --> 00:35:57

we need to be good listeners, we need to be supportive, we need to listen. But we also have to build our kids. A lot of times, we're so busy, you know what hitting this not hitting, but just, you know, shutting them down, dismissing them, you know, if they, if they oppose something, it's like, we just, we don't want to hear it. And if we are doing not to our kids, they're not going to be able to stand up to anyone, if we don't let them not to stand up as in a sense of like, talk back or be rude. I know, like, in our home is a very democratic household. And as parents, it's much harder, sometimes nine miles an hour or whatever, like our house was very democratic. You know, say everyone

00:35:57 --> 00:36:43

has a say, everyone has an opinion, everything has to be voted on. But you know what? Yes, it does take a lot more as a parent, takes a lot more patience. It takes a lot. But guess what we are in sha Allah building our kits, if my husband and I take the time to sit and listen and evaluate and adjust what we're doing, because we're telling you, you know, what, you you are important. your values, your opinion matters to us. How many people do that? Right? And so when we say you are valuable, you have something important to say, I want to hear what you say, that empowers them, right? So then when they go and someone is telling them something, an opposing view, they can say no, because I've

00:36:43 --> 00:37:14

already been told I've been validated by my parents. I've been told that what I think is, is good. I haven't been told that I'm stupid. I don't know what I'm talking about. You're making too much of me. Right? Because we're constantly doing that. And that's making them like saws are smaller. And then a bully can easily take advantage of a person like that. But no way. Will a bully ever. Pick a confident, strong, happy person. They just fall. Right? I remember this

00:37:16 --> 00:37:29

one, one client that I had, I and I always ask this in the in the interview, I always asked if you've been teased or bullied. That's how Be careful she might she might get stuck.

00:37:34 --> 00:38:09

Okay, because the bullying and teasing has such a profound impact. I always ask in the initial interview if that has happened. And one of the one of the clients said, you know, like, No way would anyone pick on his eye because it's just his mere height, you know, just strength height. So you have to give your child if they don't have the height, they need to have the personality if they don't have the, you know, personality type, something that empowers them and we as parents need to be constantly empowering them to, to make sure that they can stand up for them stuff.

00:38:11 --> 00:38:12

Are you with me?

00:38:14 --> 00:38:14


00:38:29 --> 00:38:32

Okay. Okay. So absolutely.

00:38:33 --> 00:38:36

You bring up a good point, that

00:38:37 --> 00:39:19

the idea of creating a balance so yes, we want to empower but not empowered to the point that you have no say okay, because it reminds me of the Hadith of the Prophet salallahu Salam is one of the signs that the Day of Judgment is that in Master, a slave girl will give birth to its master. And I think this is what has happened. Many years ago. They have no I like when I first started studying the dean that had this puzzled me, right, what does that mean? But it really you can understand what's going on now, these days that so many of the kids, the two year old is the master of the whole household. You have the mom, the dad, grandma grandpa running after this two year old, what do

00:39:19 --> 00:39:38

you want, sweetie? Oh, my God, like I will chase them around the house trying to feed them. They'll do anything. Oh, we have to like, we have to take them for a drive until they fall asleep. like they've run everything. So obviously we don't want that. Right. So there. There needs to be a balance between empowering and setting limits. Right.

00:39:42 --> 00:39:59

Right, right. There has to be a balance between, you know, giving them empowering them. But then also setting limits and teaching appropriate, like teaching respect, I think is one of the most important things that we as parents can instill in our kids, right?

00:40:00 --> 00:40:40

And we have to act respectfully. Right? Not just demand I demand to be respected, you know? So I'd like sometimes when I have couples come in for therapy, and the man always complains that I want to be respected, right? That is what they want most. But it's like, Okay, are you acting respectfully, are you doing things that will earn the respect of your wife that says, Wow, I really admire him, he's so amazing, I want to be, you know, I want to respect them, right. But a lot of times, that's not happening. And it's just the demand for more respect. And sometimes we as parents do that, where we are just saying, respect me, and then we're yelling or screaming, we're being unreasonable, we're

00:40:40 --> 00:41:20

not putting the time we're not giving the love. We're not doing any of that. And we just want that respect, they have to earn, right. So if we teach our kids how to act respectfully, then then they will definitely know the boundaries, they will know what is except we're having a discussion. This is where I draw the line. Some people that line is very clear for them, like they know, but then other kids that you always have to remind them Hello. And the parent, you don't cross this line, even though I'm being friendly with you, even though I'm joking with you. But this is the line of respect, you do not cross, you always have to remind them I have one that I always have to remind

00:41:21 --> 00:42:03

by. So two of them are that they just know, they just know they come to this point, and then they stop because but then the other one, we have to like always be like, okay, and you you remind them of that line. But once they have that respect inside, then you can have these very open discussions without it feeling like they, they get out of control. Okay. All right. So we need to coach them on how to react and then we need to find, like I was saying earlier, we need to find either a teacher administrator or counsellor, therapist, whoever it is to, if you find that they are really withdrawn, and they've been bullied, and they're not opening up to you find someone else that they

00:42:03 --> 00:42:47

will open up to. Okay, I had this incident where one one teenage girl was totally out of control, who wasn't listening to anyone. So handler which came into therapy, and she really bonded, and she just opened up. And she shared and just made great progress. But because she felt like she was in a safe place, I didn't blame them on the mom was like, so fed up with all the lies all the all that she was doing so that she was so critical that she didn't feel safe to open up, right. So sometimes, if we find that we are not able to provide them with what they what they need, or they just don't feel as comfortable, provide them an alternative. Don't be like it's me, or no one by someone,

00:42:47 --> 00:42:49

someone in the neighborhood. So in the masjid

00:42:51 --> 00:43:02

counselor, someone that can, that they can open up to Okay. And then the fifth thing is take your child side, be there be their champion be, you know,

00:43:04 --> 00:43:12

be the one that you know they can they can come to that you're not going to blame them, you're not going to say you're the cause of this.

00:43:14 --> 00:43:58

Let them know that you're going to help them that you love them. And you're gonna they can feel safe. I can't tell you the number of clients who will tell me that they went to their parents for the support, they were saying this is happening. And they were just, they totally they either they dismiss them, or they got mad at them that you're you somehow caused this. And so you know, that child, imagine how vulnerable they feel they're scared, and they're not getting the protection or the help that they need. Right. So we really need to be careful about that. Because once that happens, you're basically you are destroying that relationship, if they feel that I can not rely on

00:43:58 --> 00:44:36

my parents to protect me because that's like such an essential aspect of parenting is to protect them from other people. If you're not able to do that they're going to be like, as they get older, once they're like in their 20s out their own family, they're not going to really want to have much to do with you. I've seen people cut ties. I've seen people who were brought up in really good households. But because something like this happen, they totally cut ties, they don't want to have anything to do, because they're like at the time when I needed support when I needed help when I needed protection. You were not there for me and they'll never forget that. Right? Okay, and then

00:44:38 --> 00:45:00

get emotional support yourself because if you're going through this, it might it's probably very difficult to hear your kids going through that all this trauma, all of this difficulty. So see if you could find like you know, a support group, talk to people who've gone through this themselves, and that way you're and talk to your spouse. I think finding support within each other is

00:45:00 --> 00:45:01

is also really important.

00:45:02 --> 00:45:49

And the last thing I want to mention is that find something your child is really good at, and have him build on it. Okay? That is one of the things that will build rebuild his self esteem or her self esteem. If you find that kids are like to say picking on your child at school, find something, whether it's arts, whether it's martial arts with a sport, whether it's any kind of talent, writing poetry, whatever it is, let them, let them pursue it. Because every time they succeed, it will build their self esteem. Okay, so we need to just, and that's why it's so important to look at our, our kids their talents, and and just really help nurture it, not just stick on not not just live

00:45:49 --> 00:46:33

vicariously through work through our kids, a lot of times parents are just like, okay, you're gonna do exactly what I wanted to do, but I never got a chance to do. It's, it's natural to feel that way. But you provide options and see what your child is capable of, what do they shine in? And I think if you do that, then then they will naturally be drawn towards those things. Okay. So those are, you know, those are the ways to really help our kids and, and, you know, like I said, Don't ever dismiss, don't dismiss your kids when, when they are struggling with it, because I've heard of so many incidents that more recently have been happening. And we just need to be there for them,

00:46:33 --> 00:46:47

support them, understand them and provide the help that they need. How can someone sign on to the Facebook and read me some of some of the questions that we may be getting? Because I can take questions now? We have 10 minutes.

00:46:49 --> 00:46:50

Do you have some quiet? Yes.

00:46:59 --> 00:47:14

We have discussed that in, in other in other classes. But how about right now let's address the some of the bullying stuff. And then if we have time, I'll definitely address that. Are there some questions? Let me see if there?

00:47:15 --> 00:47:19

Because it's tough for me to read through these? Let's see.

00:47:22 --> 00:47:23


00:47:25 --> 00:48:05

What if your own child does the bullying? How do you deal with I think we addressed that, that if your own child is doing the bullying, I think teaching empathy is so critical. First of all, make sure you're modeling the correct behavior, that you are not bullying in the relationship, because a lot of times we may not recognize it. But if we are taking out our anger by getting physical, or taunting our kids, then they're going to just they're going to learn that right. And we have to teach empathy. If If we teach that sense of empathy, like, Okay, how it feels to be in another person's shoes, and and instill that, and maybe get them involved with

00:48:06 --> 00:48:51

things that would that will soften their hearts, okay, because I think bullying is a result of a heart and the heart, right? So if we take them to, let's say, volunteering, doing things, I remember we had a orphanage when we lived in Egypt, an orphanage close to us. So we would go to it. And I saw the change in my kids as we went and we spend time at first time I had to let them know, you know, don't be judgmental. It was like a it was a gradual training. The next time I said why don't you play with them next time, it was like read books to them. And then it created a bond. Right? And and this really it soften their hearts to be more compassionate for others. So we have to create these

00:48:51 --> 00:49:44

scenarios where we, we foster the compassion. Okay, are there? Can you talk about self positive affirmations for fighting anxiety and how we can hold on to our faith in the future? Okay, positive affirmation, what you're saying to yourself has a profound impact on how you feel, right? So it's all day long, like people who suffer from anxiety, many of the people I work with are suffering from anxiety. So they're constantly saying, Oh, my God, what if this happens, what if that happened, and it's constantly creating hypothetical situations? I add this one, one very successful man in debates, successful businessman in his 60s, okay, but suffered from anxiety the entire time, because

00:49:44 --> 00:49:59

in his mind, he was like, why did I get into an accident? What if my wife and I, what if we get into it? What if I go bankrupt? What? And if you do that you will literally drive yourself insane, right? Because you're in this constant state of panic and stress. So first of all, do

00:50:00 --> 00:50:46

way with any hypothetical, what if, I'm sure a lot of time now where, you know many people are living in, in fear, I have many clients who will not go out of their home because what if I get attack? What if they say this to me? What if they do this to the Muslim? What are they? And you know what, let's just Yes, be proactive we can plan, but thinking and being anxious is not going to help anything. Right. So it's about staying in the present, not creating these hypothetical situation that helps a lot. Okay. And saying, affirmations are like, I'm gonna stay calm, everything's gonna be fine. I'm a strong person, you're just building yourself up programming yourself for success, not

00:50:46 --> 00:50:48

for a panic attack, right?

00:50:50 --> 00:51:12

The kid is so addicted late at night, that barely winning with the remembrance of Allah do hearts find peace. So we need to do that constantly. You know, if you're, if you have that connection to Allah, you have that rope to Allah not rope is nice and thick. No matter what happens, you're going to be strong. All right. Any other Any questions?

00:51:16 --> 00:51:39

My son is talking too much. You can say he has mental problems, but he is not. Okay. So lots of times I say you need to stop talking. And this is why Allah created us with two years. And one mouth, okay? Is 13 I'm very worried from either stop him or leave him to continue this manner.

00:51:40 --> 00:52:19

It's a good problem to have if your child is talking too much. I think the word though a harder problem is if they stop talking, right? So if you keep telling them stop talking, stop talking, stop talking. They are going to eventually you're going to shut them down. And you're not going to have a way of communicating. So, okay, I understand it can be annoying. Sometimes. They go on and on and on. But at least they're open. Right? So I wouldn't discourage it. I would not discourage your child from from talking too much. Because that is a good problem to have versus someone who just totally shuts you out. Any DC Any other question?

00:52:21 --> 00:52:22


00:52:31 --> 00:52:35

Okay, moms who bully how many moms bullied and

00:52:37 --> 00:52:43

bullied by the grandmother by the grandpa? Oh, I thought the bomb. So the bullying

00:52:50 --> 00:52:58

and bullying grandma? Wow. Okay. Well, and it's her mom, right? It's not the mother in law. Okay, that's better.

00:53:00 --> 00:53:44

Because of bullying grant and mother in law is much harder to address? Well, I think it's, we always have to be first of all very, very respectful of our elders. They, they get involved because, you know, they feel that they just they know better. And I think it's a matter of maybe sharing with them in an indirect way rather than correcting your mother and saying, well, this is wrong. That's not the right way to do it. I think it's like talking about, okay, this new met like this new thing you just learned and sharing it from that perspective. I remember when, when I had my first sight, I went I went to like eight different parenting classes. Okay, because I wanted to be I'm serious. I

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wanted to be a from nursing to washing to VDI, you name it, I took it. Because I didn't want to just be I wanted to be independent. I don't want to rely just on my on my mom, which I love and respect the law. But I wanted to. And so I remember we had some different ways, different approaches. And the way that I would get it, get the point across was saying, you know, okay, I just attended this class, I just read this book, and sharing it from that perspective, rather than you're wrong. I'm right, this set the way we're gonna do it. Right. So I think approaching your mom from that angle that this is effective. This is a new methodology. How about we try this? That'll be the best way.

00:54:27 --> 00:54:30

But I think some moms are more intrusive than others.

00:54:32 --> 00:54:38

whatever they're saying, right? It's either my way or the highway. Some people are. Right, right.

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You're just like, I'm just not getting through.

00:54:44 --> 00:54:59

To one direction. Yeah. Some moms are very adamant in my way or the highway. You're right. And you just have to respect that. And you have to, you know, basically counterbalance that. Right. I had a I had a client who's actually mother in law was

00:55:00 --> 00:55:28

Like that, where there was a lot of negativity towards the kids, and I just said, you need to counterbalance that by a lot of positivity. And that works as well. So that you can't change. You can't expect to change people, especially in their 50s 60s. And on any other question. My mother, my daughter, my boss, my daughter says she wanted to wear a dress because her friend told her and she wants to wear it. So the idea that

00:55:30 --> 00:55:34

lose her friendship, how do you lose a friendship I address?

00:55:37 --> 00:56:05

Okay, can I deal with it, and then help her and she says, I have no friends at school, no one likes me. And she's a seven year old. And on my side of my friendship, okay? It sounds like Okay, so what I get out of this is that there's some level of peer pressure, okay, so we all we all deal with some level of peer pressure. And we have to be very aware of that. And it could be positive peer pressure, or negative peer pressure, like I remember, in being in,

00:56:06 --> 00:56:43

in Egypt, like some of the positive peer pressures, like some, sometimes all sudden, the kids decide, okay, we're going to, we're going to do extra fasting, you know, and everyone does it, and they're doing it. And it's, that was a great, that's a great kind of positive of peer pressure. But then there are other times the peer pressure is more about doing things to just to fit in. And in those situations, there are some things that are harmless that I don't know what the dress was like, or what they wanted to wear. But sometimes that that is harmless. And other times, the peer pressure is getting you to do things that are outside of your morals. And I think that is a very important

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thing to distinguish. And, and that's why we as parents have to make our kids feel so accepted. Okay. Because I remember like growing up, I went to like, from from second grade I was, I was here in the public schools. And there was a lot of there was a lot of peer pressure. But one of the things that helped me through all that and I didn't succumb to it was because I felt I don't need to gain acceptance. It wasn't like, Oh, my God, I'll do anything to fit in, you know, is that feeling worthy, feeling loved and respected at your home?

00:57:21 --> 00:57:50

makes you look at all that and, and, and then in the end, they end up respecting you, when you have the strength and confidence to stand up for what you believe in, then they will, they'll respect that. But you know, not never to feel that. You have to do something, if there's a group of people that you feel like you have to do something in order to gain their approval, then that's questionable friendship. Okay. Anything else? Let's

00:57:51 --> 00:57:59

distinguish, though. It is it is tough. Yeah, it is. It is tough. And I think that that drives the point home.

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And really building that self confidence at home that, you know, your opinions matter to me, what do you think that's right, the most important person in my life, you and your siblings, you know, and I'm here to support you positive or negative, I'm here around the block, you know, yeah. When a child, right, when, when a child feels that they are accepted, there's no need to go elsewhere, when they feel like Oh, my, my home is a source of love is a source of comfort is a source of acceptance, then they are empowered, right? And then they go out, and then they can pick and choose who they want to be with. But when someone is void of all level of love, and respect, and accept and they

00:58:45 --> 00:59:14

feel rejected by the family, they feel neglected by the family, they will go anywhere. I've had so many clients tell me that part of the reason that they got into, like a sexual relationship was because they just, they just wanted love, like the girls just wanted to be hugged. But then it ended up something totally different. Right? So if we give them the love and the acceptance that they need, they will search for it elsewhere. So that's a really, yeah.

00:59:21 --> 00:59:21


00:59:26 --> 00:59:28

Not whatever I want. I never said that.

00:59:36 --> 00:59:46

Okay, there's, so you're saying if you're if you accept your child, and then it's this feeling like oh, I can do anything and I can get away with it.

00:59:50 --> 00:59:51

what's the alternative?

00:59:52 --> 00:59:53


00:59:54 --> 00:59:55

cut them off?

00:59:57 --> 01:00:00

What do you do like would that lead into

01:00:02 --> 01:00:23

It would it would. So the idea is, it's very different to condemn a behavior rather than condemn the person, right? So they can do a behavior that is totally unacceptable. And you can you will not accept that behavior, but you don't abandon them as a person, you

01:00:25 --> 01:01:09

separate the action from the person because you that that unconditional love has to be there. We have to make them feel that, you know, I'm there for you. I mean, I can't tell you the number of people they will like, let's say they fall into air, they follow their temptation, they accidentally get into this relationship. Right? And they feel like they're doomed. That's it. That's in my life, I might as well kill myself, because my parents are not going to accept me. And me, is that a good alternative? No, the alternative is, you made a mistake. Allah forgives you make Toba, you clean up your act, I will help you get back on track not let's do it by I've seen so many people reformed

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themselves. And and that redemption is what's missing in a lot of our parenting. We're not teaching them that you get a second chance you get a third chance you get a 10 you get chances a lot gives us the chance, because who are we to say, You're doomed? When Allah is saying, No, you you can correct yourself. Doesn't matter how you sound like this one girl grew up in a very religious household, and mahad shaba. And I was going to call it and got got into like, some serious relationships, and got into physical relationships. And so she just felt so guilty, and the parents found out and it became became a big mess. Now, the good thing about the parents was that the MA, I don't think the father

01:01:56 --> 01:02:42

found out but the mom decided, you know what, let's get her help. Okay, so she sought the therapy for her. And a part of her was like she couldn't forgive herself. Because of all that all that was ingrained in her as far as you've made a mistake, and it's over, you're doomed. And I told her, you can start a fresh new page, right? That was in the past. Now, from this point on, you make a commitment online, doesn't matter how many horrible things you did make a new start. And when you when you give someone that you empower them, because what's the point in beating yourself up and feeling like you're doomed? Because if that person feels hopeless like that, guess what? Like, I

01:02:42 --> 01:02:47

don't care, I'm going to * anyway. Let me live it up. That is the mindset.

01:02:48 --> 01:03:28

That is the mindset. But if you say, Allah is Forgiving, the door of repentance is always open. What happens? It's like, Oh, I get a new chance. It's like a kid who is let's say, failing. I had this a client came in, she was feeling every subject. Okay. And her mom was ready to like, you know, she was fed up with her, she's so angry. I said, Okay, let's make a deal. How about you get, get yourself out of all of these apps, turn these apps to anything other than her. Okay? And then we're gonna negotiate with your mom, see if she can loosen up a little bit with the, with the punishment or whatever she's doing. She got so motivated, because she felt I have a child. Why did the mom

01:03:28 --> 01:03:53

wanted this? She's like, Oh, I want I just want to let her have it. I want to let her have it. This is not what what's the point? The fact that she's going to be hopeless, the fact that she's going to stop trying? Is that what you really want? You know, so we have to look at the end result. Sometimes we're so focused on our feelings, that it's like, oh, I don't want to be nice to them. And we become like a kid. Right? We really regret her like, I'm not talking to you.

01:03:54 --> 01:04:03

But we're trying to teach and instill values that will, you know, double raise that the tarbiyah right.

01:04:04 --> 01:04:21

Okay, so I don't know if there any. My 11 year old son school said he had ADHD and wanted him on medication. We have him tested and the results were he was bullied. How can we help his hyperactivity in this case? Okay.

01:04:22 --> 01:04:43

Two different things. If you have ADHD and then you're bullied though, they're two separate things. I don't think one cause the other. So it's very important to address whether it's a DD attention deficit disorder, or attention, the hyperactivity, this has to be addressed because what happens when it's ignored.

01:04:44 --> 01:04:59

Your kids will have very low self esteem because they're not performing well. They might get in trouble. So I've had some experiences with this that sometimes behaviorally, you can improve, improve it other times with the diet

01:05:00 --> 01:05:32

Okay, my my older son, you know, he has it and he changed his diet around, he became very, like super healthy gluten free paleo, and Mashallah, it totally affected his concentration. Sometimes you can work with changing your diet, or you know, there's some really effective medication that you take the medication, and the child does a 180. So I that needs to be addressed. And then the bullying is a totally different issue, which I think all that we discussed today could be

01:05:33 --> 01:05:34

applied. Okay.

01:05:36 --> 01:05:41

Anything else? See, yes?

01:05:54 --> 01:05:57

Your daughter is six years old, and she doesn't listen.

01:06:03 --> 01:06:07

She doesn't do it. How do you tell her?

01:06:21 --> 01:06:36

You know, there are and I think this goes, I'll address this, this will be like our last question. But it goes to the point of strong willed children. Okay. There are some individuals that are very, very opinionated. Right? And it's very,

01:06:41 --> 01:07:19

yeah, right. With strong willed children, you really have to have consequences, okay. My daughter is a strong willed daughter, girl. And I find that the most effective thing is having consequences for so you. If your homework is not done, you don't get to do whatever it is, if you don't do this, you don't get like that TV time on the weekend. Every single day, like has to be consequently, without the drama. Okay? Because sometimes, we as moms become drama queens, right, like something they don't

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look guilty.

01:07:22 --> 01:07:47

They're like, they don't listen. And it's just like, oh, so instead of having all that drama, just simply state, what's going to happen, you do this, this happened to do this data, and just very nonchalant without the emotions and, and and let them learn from the consequences. That's the best way. That's the best best methodology of dealing with strong willed children.

01:07:48 --> 01:08:18

at any age, yes, yes, there's consequences here to try the positive reinforcement first. And if that's not effective, there is a constant and that is ultimately our job. Excuse me, as parents, we have to teach that our kids there are consequences for their behavior and ultimately for the Hereafter, right? That if we don't live a certain way, the ultimate consequence is not something we can take lightly. Right? So we have to start from here.

01:08:27 --> 01:08:30

It is going to be repeated 1000 times

01:08:31 --> 01:08:32


01:08:37 --> 01:08:39

I don't know why you're punishing her away.

01:08:46 --> 01:08:47

I love you there. I'm

01:08:49 --> 01:08:51

not you know, this is my heart.

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And you won't get that.

01:08:57 --> 01:09:05

Okay, okay. So you take away so you are removing some of the privileges which is good Yeah.

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Know what they have to learn that there are consequences to their behavior. You don't do what is expected to do you won't get the privilege and that's that there's nothing harmful about that. It's actually good because kids who don't learn that there are consequences to their behavior. They just act out. Okay, so Charlotte, this was beneficial. So May Allah help us give us the strength, the patience that the confidence to raise our kids with all of that make them feel loved, feel accepted, feel a sense of like empowered, and, and guide us in all that we're doing and salads is like a love affair so I'm on a cone

01:09:51 --> 01:09:51


15th November 2016 – Epic Parenting Class

Children shape the next generation; therefore, raising them as believers is one of the most noble and important tasks a Muslim can blessed with. Imparting children with God consciousness, sound values, and proper manners is a trust from Allah, and therefore should not be taken lightly.

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