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The Mothers Embrace

I met Rachel Camfield in 2015 at The Southern C.  Our meeting was crazy because we connected immediately after the meeting.  She was full of life, passionate about the company she was working for at the time, and just a really great spirit.  I was at the Summit to style the mid-day luncheon, and who would ever know that simple ask would change my mindset on business, Instagram, and this blog.  But ... it did.  Rachel was just a fun and bright spot in a few days that I struggled.  My oldest was in the second semester of his senior year, my life was changing, and I needed to change with it. 

What a blessing that time was for me. 

Fast forward to the next year when Rachel decided to work for herself as a business life coach. I signed up to learn from her; the time we spent together that year was incredible.  She helped me make goals and beat them, she helped me transition from full-time mom to something new, and I will forever be thankful for her investment in me. I have watched Rachel grow so much in the last six years, and her life and business are thriving.  It is a joy to be on the sidelines and look on. 

A while back, she launched a podcast, The Mothers Embrace, and recently asked me to be a guest.  I would say yes to anything Rachel asked, even when she made a hard ask ... that I would talk about bullying school-aged children. First, I said yes, then I emailed back and said I wasn't ready, and then finally, about a year later, I said yes again.  We recorded the podcast on April 8th and released it on June 7th.  It was not easy to record, challenging, and hard to listen to again this week.  This is not a great topic to discuss, but it is rampant in our schools, and we need to open our eyes to it. 

Both of my children were bullied in school.  My son from the time he was in kindergarten, and my daughter was only in high school.  Many people bullied my son over the years, including teachers and my daughter, just by one individual.  Their responses were vastly different; each required us to take action, support them, and be there for them no matter what.  

Here is what I can share about our experiences.  Be a parent, not a friend.  Be involved and know what is going on, even when they choose not to talk to you. There is a difference between their privacy and hiding painful situations from you. You will know the difference and do not ignore them.  Validate their feelings, listen, be there for them, and take action when it takes a turn.  Be present; I cannot say this enough, emotionally and physically.  Get to know your children and their signs, they will show you when they are in trouble.  Don't be afraid of them having mental health issues, we all do, and just like a cold, it needs attending to when they struggle. Do not be embarrassed and teach them the same.  It is all ok. 

If you would like to listen to the podcast you can do so here. It is long. I talk a lot, but if you choose to listen I hope it will change someone's life. I can tell you this journey has changed ours, for the better, and I am here if you need to talk. 

This defines bullying in case you need clarity. It happens to more than 20% of kids between the ages of 12-18 which means it will be our children, we will know someone or someone we know will know someone.  Here is a resource for you to understand the bullying laws in your state.  Georgia is a good one for laws and rules and for us, my husband was adamant both times something is done to the children involved.  They only learn from their mistakes if we hold them accountable. If it happens online your actions need to be different and the response needs to be stronger.  It is not ok and they need to hear from you and their supporters that what has happened to them is. not. ok. 

Once again, I am here if you need to talk. 💗

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