I am Kobus Myburgh, and Don’t Be THAT Guy started as a concept in 2018, after my son Jack* has been bullied in a previous school he attended. I have started implementing the research and hints and tips I have learned over the next two years into a website that never saw the light of day due to me feeling unsure about how to continue with the project, until, in 2021, I decided to just put what I’ve got out there, and see where it takes me.
Don’t Be THAT Guy is a project to empower against bullying. We are helping and empowering all people involved with acts of bullying:
- Those who are being bullied
- Those who help those being bullied
- Those who bully
Who are we helping?
It is kind of obvious why we help the victims of bullying, and also those that help the victims of bullying. It does not take a rocket scientist to figure that out.
So, why do we help the bullies, too, you ask? It is simple really – the bullies need to be helped and empowered with ways to stop them from bullying. Bullies are victims too, and helping only the victims of bullying would be like putting a band-aid on a wound. It may relieve the symptoms, and it may help a little to heal the scars of bullying, but it will not help completely – for the next time the bullied person gets bullied again, the scab on the wound is picked, and the work done by the band-aid is undone . But helping bullies to stop bullying, now THAT is something that could bring along lasting healing to all involved.
A flashback to the past…
It took my wife, Tanya, and I several months to find a new school for Jack to go to where he felt comfortable. He finally joined Out of the Box Academy in Fourways, in the Northern suburbs of Johannesburg, South Africa, where he has FLOURISHED! He has made friends. He has learned. He has excelled in various aspects of life just like a normal kid should.
This was made possible by a lot of small (and some big) moving parts:
- Jack’s resilience.
- Our searches for schools where our wonderful son would be happy and at ease, which culminated in our (primarily Jack’s) choice of Out of the Box Academy.
- The staff and teachers at Out of the Box Academy.
- Countless hours of research and trying to get Jack to feel like going to school again, and supporting him when he did not feel like it.
As a 4-year-old, not understanding why other kids were bullying him, Jack is now, at the time of writing this page, a happy 8-year-old kid, with friends, and usually very happy to go to school and learn to shape his future.
Jack also has a brother, Henry*, who is almost 4 years younger than him, and is also going to Out of the Box Academy, where they are well taken care of by teacher Shannon and her wonderful staff.
…but we’re all focused on the future
While Jack’s past experiences with bullying has started our journey, we are all about the future. If we help a single child to not fall victim to bullying, we have achieved a wonderful milestone. But imagine how wonderful it would be if we can help not only the bullying victims, but also prevent bullying from happening in the first place.
Help us! Join us! Spread the word! Share your hints and tips and resources. We can conquer bullying together.
Jack* and Henry* are not my children’s real names. They are minors, and I wish to protect their identities. The information given otherwise is true.