It is a tale as old as time. Kid goes to school. Kid is different, overweight, uncharacteristically smart, skinny, a victim of xenophobia, impoverished or overly timid. Kid is bullied. Surely boys who sat at the feet of Socrates were criticized for not having the newest sandals or being as beautiful as the other Athenian boys, but they made it and so will today’s teens, provided they are equipped with the proper tools. Educators and other adults that function as support systems for young adults constantly witness children being belittled for one reason or another. Most people encourage them to share their experiences with both their parents and counselors in order to have documentation of the situations, should things exacerbate. Students are discouraged from trading insults with each other because it is a bad practice as far as character goes, but what good does it do for a young adult to stand around and be insulted by a peer only to run off and tell a teacher that is drowning in Common Core Standards and pacing guides? Why aren’t we teaching kids to stand up for themselves? Bullying is by no means the fault of the victim, however, it is highly plausible that instances of bullying in schools and other institutions could be reduced by developing resiliency in young people and teaching them to deal with some of life’s more difficult players. Anti-Bullying campaigns and character education are both excellent tools to use in schools, but realistically, students should be engaging in activities that build their confidence so that when they are approached by bullies, or students that like to play the dozens, they can have something on the inside that makes it harder for the criticism to take root. It is fine for Susie to seek solace in the arms of a counselor, but what happens when the counselor is off at yet another IEP meeting and Susie is being called ugly on Facebook or Ask.com? Adults cannot stop every instance of bullying, but what we can do is help kids cultivate their talents and look to the things they do well at, using them like a phalanx in order to not take the disparaging comments personally. Let’s make kids focus on the positive. Confidence and healthy self-worth are the perfect antidotes for the schoolyard/virtual bully.