My younger sister tells me she's having trouble at her new middle school; one of these is that a boy, who tends to be the class clown and troublemaker, makes fun of her underbite. I told her to notify her teacher about these insults and to absolutely make sure that people will not find out that it was her who told them off. I was relieved to hear that her teacher completely agreed with her, and his parents will be notified, and that her anonymity will be respected. However, she tells me that when the boy was called and taken by one of the school administrators during one of their classes, he returned unchanged.
He then made a slightly racist remark on my sister, telling her that her brother is probably Kim Jong-Un (we're Asians if it isn't clear) resulting in a few nearby classmates giggling a bit.
I told her that she has 3 options, in order of severity:
- Tell the teacher. Mention that he used a racist remark and to her it is verbal abuse and discrimination. Those 3 terms have heavy implications and will surely bring a severe punishment to the boy; but since he seems to not care about punishment, this might not do much change.
- Ignore him. I told her that as long as people don't really have the same opinion as him or the insults don't become viral, it can just be brushed off as an isolated incident. However, what I fear is that if she leaves this untouched, this will alter her reputation at her school which is currently fragile because she has no friends in her class and in her school. She does, however, have a cousin but she doesn't seem to help often, most of the time occupied with her own friends.
- Make racist remarks back at him. This is the most dangerous, but arguably the one that my sister doesn't disagree with. She has been holding back insulting comebacks at him for a long time. The kid is of African origin, so it's quite easy to make up racist remarks at him. However, this is heavily shunned upon, unfortunately. I obviously don't want her reputation to go hand-in-hand with the term "racist" but again, I don't want to leave her undefended against these insults. So I tell her to be extremely cautious if she is to choose this option.
Here are my questions:
- What is the best way to deal with this type of bullying in the role of an elder brother?
- What can I do to prevent this?