I am a Parent

When your child is being bullied it is one of the most powerful yet powerless feelings in the world, ironic given bullying is all about misplaced power.

It is devastating to watch your child be ‘chipped away’ at by another child, or indeed an adult.

It is heartbreaking to see your child come home from school questioning who they are and why noone likes them. And how they internalize those messages, from such an early age.

You cannot protect your child when they are in school. But you can give them the tools and strength to help themselves. Camping out in the school, being their go to person at break and lunch on the phone does not help them find their own feet and learn to deal with difficult people.

So what do we do, we hear you ask? You empower, you teach them not to let the negativity in, you explain that people harm to make themselves more powerful and if your child allows that to happen, by body language, by flying or fighting, they allow the other child to win.

What can SuperMe do for your child?

SuperMe offers one day workshops for your child, a fun, inspiring day of validation and learning from the SuperMe team and other children of the same age.

SuperMe is a fun and safe place to learn new ways of dealing with bullying. Subjects covered: body language, confidence building & assertiveness. You can download an information brochure (PDF) here. Aims:

  • Develop strategies for handling conflict & cruelty
  • Enhance self esteem
  • Reduces truancy

SuperMe workshops are created to help individuals rebuild their lives after bullying. They are run by our team who have trained in many proven successful techniques including the acclaimed Zap program. They cater for children of all ages and are particularly successful with children aged 9 to 16 years.They are run in central locations and take place over the course of a day. All children must be accompanied by a parent or guardian as there is a separate afternoon workshop for the adults.

SuperMe Assertiveness Training is based on a programme known as ZAP Assertiveness Training developed by Kidscape (www.kidscape.org.uk), a UK Charity set up to protect children. We are very grateful that Kidscape has uniquely authorised us to use their concept in Ireland.

Statistics from engagement with such workshops show the following improvements;

  • 79% of the participants were no longer bullied.
  • Of those still bullied, 80% were bullied less and 90% felt more able to deal with it.
  • 100% of the children found the session very useful or useful. 94% said they could stand up for themselves better. 85% felt more confident and 83% reported an improvement in self-esteem.
  • 87% said they’d used the skills learnt during the session, and encouragingly 44% went on to develop anti-bullying strategies of their own.
  • Truanting was reduced significantly. Only 2% stayed away from school after compared with 50% before.
  • The number of children who reported feeling depressed reduced from 92% to 35%.

SuperMe Assertiveness Training is based on a programme known as ZAP Assertiveness Training developed by Kidscape (www.kidscape.org.uk), a UK Charity set up to protect children. We are very grateful that Kidscape has uniquely authorised us to use their concept in Ireland.

Testimonials from parents who attended a SuperMe assertiveness workshop:

Jenny’s intervention and advice have been invaluable to us a family, in helping resolve a bullying situation which arose when our child made the transition from primary to secondary school. With Jenny’s help our child acquired a set of skills she can use in many circumstances, currently or in the future. As parents, we also acquired tools to enable us help our children grow from childhood into the teenage years by helping to build their self esteem and confidence. (Parent, 11 year old girl)

My child is now looking forward to going to school. I really don’t know where to begin in trying to emphasise just how important the work that SuperMe Solutions carry out. We came across SuperMe Solutions in an effort to get help with our daughter who had been experiencing a lot of difficulty with her the girls in her class. The nature of the bullying that she is experiencing is in the form of persistent taunting and teasing over anything and everything that comes out of her mouth.

As you can imagine, as a parent, it is simply sole destroying to see your child come in every day, head hanging low with what seemed to be an ever increase sense of self worthlessness. We contacted Jenny and explained the situation. She asked would we be interested in our daughter attending a self assertiveness workshop. Although this course is essentially an anti-bullying programme, I certainly feel that the title of self assertiveness workshop has a far more positive sound to it and doesn’t bare the same label and negative connotations that anti-bullying does, which is my mind is extremely important for children in particular. After talking it over we decided that we would sent her to the workshop. We owed her that much. She was in a place where no matter what we said to her as parents about how amazing etc she is, the words were just not getting through and we had no idea what to do next.

The child that walked into the workshop and the child that walked out after completing the workshop were 2 different people. She came out walking taller and completely buzzing from the workshop. I believe that one of the biggest and most important pieces of information that she came away with is that she is not alone. This happens to other kids. She is not alone.

Through a variety of discussions and exercises Jenny and Sarah gave her the tools and skills that she needs to be able to walk into school and not feel terrified of what awaits her. Watching her go back to school after the workshop was amazing. She felt armed and ready to not let the particular group of girls knock her down. It is lovely to hear her say that while yes there may have been some bother in the school today, that she knew to let it slide right off of her. She still unfortunately has days which are more difficult than others but I can see in her that she is stronger and far more able and equipped to deal with whatever is thrown at her, and for that I am so very grateful that SuperMe Solutions exists.

Thank you so much Jenny & Sarah – You are both the guardian angels of schoolkids.

Dear Jenny and Sarah

I can not believe the difference in Susie. When she walked out of your workshop on that Saturday, she was a different child. It seemed as if she had left all her anger and pain inside that building. She came out happy, free, understood, listened to and most of all, she came out with a wonderful toolbox. The icing on the cake for her was to know that she was not at fault and she does not have to change. She can always be herself.She was really excited going back into school on that Monday. She is much happier in school. She still gets smart comments but she now, stands tall, uses eye contact and responds with something positive or uses humour.

Before the workshop Susie would have sat in a corner on her own and would have thoughts going around and around in her head “why me? They don’t want me etc”, but now the confidence in that child is just amazing. She knows she has nothing to worry about as long as she is polite, respectful and uses positive comebacks.

I thought I was going to have to get some one to one help for her because she was going into her self, no confidence and interest in nothing. When a child says “My life, oh no, I don’t have a life! Why am I here anyway”. As a parent, you just don’t know where to turn who to turn too. The last thing you want is to label your child. I was so frightened that she would think about suicide. This might sound silly but there was a lot about suicide last year in the news and she has to watch the news as part of their homework. I had myself worried sick.It was great to have the opportunity to met up with other parents. Every child is so different and their situations are also different. It was nice to hear how other schools and teachers viewed and acted on bullying. I became very emotional especially after hearing about the couples daughter who is suffering from an eating distress. That was one of my fears too. It just shocked me.

It was my first time to be listened to and not to be told that “you are an over protective mum. Your child is the only one complaining so she needs to toughen up. your child needs to change”. So to be told that our daughter does not have to change, was just fantastic because we love her the way she is. I also appreciate the fact that you listened to me you also understood the politics around small schools and local communities.The other thing that we really liked about the workshop was, we didn’t have to get a referral from a doctor, you took our word and that was just fantastic.

All we can say is a huge Thank You, to yourself Jenny and Sarah. You are both wonderful ladies. Very professional and down to earth. You both relate very well to the kids and the parents. Your workshop is just amazing.We now have a child with the sparkle back in her eyes, who can smile again, stands tall, can make choices, has her witty sense of humour back, goes to school happy because she can use every tool in that toolbox if she needs to, She is being herself and if others don’t like that – it’s their loss. She has adopted some of her own tools and while she is still getting excluded in some situations – she lets them know she sees what they are doing by using her tools.

My heart is no longer aching and I can sleep at night. When we collect her from school and ask her how her day went she will most often say “I had a good day”. Then she will proceed to tell me about the exclusion etc but she is just taking it in her stride and has become such a strong individual as a result of it. She no longer dwells on incidents in school and they do not keep her awake at night. We discuss everything and see the funny side of it.

This is the first time in all her years in primary school that she is happy.

I was also worried that she was becoming very angry and annoyed and thought that she might lash out at someone. It is not in her personality but with the build up of the bullying over the years, it scared me. However, when I looked at her after coming out of talking with you Jenny, I just could not believe the difference in her posture and her eyes.She often complained of awful headaches but hey are gone now.

Thank you Jenny and Sarah for helping her believe in herself and for her to be so happy to be herself. Our little girl has her life back. So whatever you two ladies are doing, please keep it up and continue to help other children as you both have helped our wonderful, little girl. Once again, our home has so much laughter in it, it’s just magical. This is the best Christmas gift that our family could ever receive.

Thanks again

Parents who attended a SuperMe workshop with their 10 year old daughter


Read Jennifer’s Articles on Mummy Pages
Read Jennifer’s Articles on Mummy Pages

Jennifer is a regular expert contributor to www.mummypages.ie. Click above to read her articles.