Parent to Parent: Kids getting bullied for wearing masks | Parenting

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By Jodie Lynn Parent to Parent

Q • There are no more mask mandates at my children’s schools; how is this going to help? My kids are continuing to wear masks but have already gotten bullied and teased about it. Exactly how am I going to handle this crisis and what can I do to help them feel good about wearing their masks?

From a reader • Our children will head back to learning remotely at home for various reasons. If the mask mandates were upheld, if we actually paid teachers what they are worth and for those kids who were vaccinated (if that was an option in their family beliefs), maybe we would have had a chance to avoid this whole mess once again. — DR in Chicago

From Jodie Lynn • As the reader above stated, it looks like some kids are returning to remote learning. It may happen in your area soon.

Until then, your kids as well as others who have been wearing their masks will be the smart ones for sticking with them, and the bullies and teasers will also need to wear them again.

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People may have varying opinions about this subject, but opinions don’t change science and the science is clear: wearing masks while in close proximity to others is still an effective means of fighting the spread of this terrible illness. Tell your children that wearing masks doesn’t just help keep them safe, it also helps your community and the world at large.

Additionally, they can think of it like wearing helmets and pads while doing an activity like skating or biking. It’s a little inconvenient, it might make them feel a bit dorky at times, and it may cause others who forgo wearing them to make jokes, but it’s important. The people who don’t wear safety equipment can laugh all they like until they end up in the hospital with a broken bone or some missing teeth.

As Ben Franklin famously once said, “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure.” I would say that it’s also worth a pile of medical bills and a lot of regret.

Remind your kids that they’re making the smart move and they should be proud of it. If others disagree, to each their own, but if they deride those with whom they disagree then they’re just acting the fool. A wise person accepts the differences between himself and others while a foolish one is quick to judge and mock, especially in this case when the difference is a safety precaution.

Kudos to you and your family for following through on something that at one time your schools and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention deemed a necessary and worthwhile step in keeping kids healthy and safe. It did indeed help for a while, and we may be returning to it.

Basically, the bullies and teasers will have to eat their words while they also wipe off the sticky egg that was splattered on their faces.

Can you help?How in the heck are people going to pay for the groceries for their families with the rising costs of food? Do you and other parents have some tips for stretching our dollars for meals? This is really getting serious, and we are already strapped for money. Please help with any advice.

To share parenting tips or submit questions, write to: Parent to Parent, 2464 Taylor Road, Suite 131, Wildwood, MO 63040. Email: [email protected], or go to www.parenttoparent.com, which provides a secure and easy way to submit tips or questions. All tips must have city, state and first and last name or initials to be included in the column.

Jodie Lynn is an award-winning parenting columnist, author of five books and mother to three children. She and her family live in Wildwood.

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