Dolly Parton’s Inspiring Advice For Standing Up To Bullies: ‘If You Can’t Be Big, Don’t Belittle’

Leave it to Dolly Parton to bring more loving wisdom into the world.

The music icon shared with Access Hollywood this week the inspiration behind her new children’s book “Billy the Kid Makes it Big” and how she hopes young people will learn from the important message.

“It’s all about music and it’s all about confidence and it’s all about overcoming, standing up to bullies and all the things that kids need to know about and I am just happy to present it in such a fun way,” she said.

Tennessee Titan: Country Music Legend Dolly Parton

Tennessee Titan: Country Music Legend Dolly Parton

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The title character is actually based upon Dolly’s real-life “God dog,” who belongs to her longtime manager, and the beloved legend shared how he makes the perfect mascot for kids to connect with.

“We thought it would be a cute idea … to let him be the voice and kind of express the things that kids need to know about while they’re growing up and how to deal with the bullies,” Dolly said. “How to deal with fear and all that kind of stuff, so it’s a fun little story and I think parents are going to love reading it to their kids too.”

Dolly went on to explain the philosophy behind her song “Makin’ Fun Ain’t Funny” and how she’s overcome bullying in the past herself. The singer reflected on her belief that having compassion for everyone, including the bully themselves, spreads helpful positivity and understanding.

“Well you cry and you get hurt and you feel ashamed, all the things that bullies try to make you feel because they try just like in my little songs. If you can’t be big, don’t belittle. Don’t belittle someone else you know something about, trying to make yourself look bigger than they are,” she shared. “So this little book is … about the bullying and standing up to that or at least not letting it change who you are and to shake your confidence. To stay true to yourself and all that sort of thing but it’s always painful and I think most kids for one reason or another, ore one way or another have been bullied but we’ve often talked about how also the bullies are needing a special kind of attention they are not getting they’re probably needing someone to love and care for them so they try to take it out on someone else when they’re really just trying to be you know be loved or seen.”

“Billy the Kid Makes it Big” is out now.

— Erin Biglow

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