Self-defence for boys, too
I applaud the work that teacher Jan Beth has done teaching selfdefence to girls in Porirua schools (July 23).
She has now passed this on to Taniya Smith, which is great.
I benefited from such teachings at high school.
However, as a mother of three young boys, two of primary school age, I believe the time has come for boys to be included as well.
Sadly there are many predators who equally prey on young boys.
My boys are gentle and kind and, like some of their female counterparts, don’t display high levels of self-esteem and could greatly benefit from being taught self-defence.
Though I have taught my children what to do in uncomfortable situations, it would be great if they could learn this at school, especially when I see the influence that school has on other areas of their learning.
I want my boys to continue to be gentle and kind, revere women and for the most part walk away from fights, much of which is reinforced to them at school, but I also want them to feel empowered and ‘‘allowed’’ to have voice to fight back when they need it most.
It is commendable that we teach our boys to respect women and in most cases not fight back, but I’m disappointed that with our young boys they are not taught to differentiate when they should, and can have a voice and aggressively defend themselves, as their female classmates are encouraged to do.
Unfortunately this is not a male/female issue.
This is a protect-our-young people issue.
All of them.