Bullyproof - RTÉ Player
Did anyone else find this programme exploitative and unpleasant? Coleman places all the focus on the bullied child (even the title itself is an outlandish and unrealistic claim that suggests kids can make themselves bullyproof - the logic being that they are NOT bullyproof and therefore somehow partly responsible for being bullied). While the bullied child undoubtedly needs help in dealing with the emotions and stresses of being bullied, these are essentially private issues that should be dealt with as such.
However, Coleman, in the first episode, places all responsibility on changing the situation on the bullied child: In one case using the Father as a role model of how to stand up the bully. The puzzled child had no idea of what to do or how to behave in front of Coleman and his Dad (each with a lifetime of experience behind them). In another situation Coleman squeezes the tears out of a 13 year old girl, also the subject of bullying. I found it unpleasant and exploitative.
The onus should not be on the bullied child to change the situation. Rather Coleman would have been better off focusing on aiding kids to identify bullying when it happens to others and teaching them how and when to report it, as well as teaching how adults can keep the lines of communication open and engender environments that do not tolerate bullying.