Bullies! We have all faced being bullied at some point in our life. Whether it was way back in school, on the bus to work or standing in a line at a restaurant.
Some people like to push their way to the top by bullying others. Other people just like the power they feel by making others sad.
A few might have behavioural issues, related to childhood trauma, an abusive family, etc. There is also a category of people who are plain old spoiled and like getting what ever they want.
Bullies who are kids, end up growing to be rude adults. Kids who are bullied relentlessly, end up facing self-esteem issues for the rest of their lives.
Bullying is an issue, which parents should not take lightly. If this problem is not nipped in the bud, then a bullied child might face academic and personal problems out of this unnecessary fright.
If your child is being bullied, then you have quite a task ahead! Some kids that are being bullied tend to become a recluse, they do not confide in their parents and display rebellious behaviour in small ways.
Other kids might display self-destructive behavioural issues, which can be extremely dangerous for the well-being of your child.
So, continue reading to know as a parent how you can tackle this issue to stop the damage that is happening to your child's life.
Don't Hover Over Your Child
- As hard as it may seem, giving your child space, but being there to comfort him/her will help. This, however, does not mean that you need to sit quiet and do nothing. Let your child open up to you on his/her own.
- Do not force him/her to speak to you about the issue. At the same time, do your research and get ready to protect your child.
- When parents find out that their child is being bullied, they tend to get over protective. Instead of becoming the saviour for your child, teach your child to protect himself/herself.
- Teach him/her how to communicate in an assertive way, teach him/her to stand up for himself/herself and, most importantly, teach him/her that it is alright to ask for help. Keep in mind that there are chances of passing remarks, if this happens, teach your child to be emotionally stable and brave.
- If you merely have a doubt, then contacting the parents of the bully might lead to an unpleasant situation. If you are absolutely sure that your child is being bullied, then contacting the school is a good first option.
- Changing schools is the least effective solution, as there are bullies in every school, many that even pick on the new kid. Empowering your child to fight back using his/her mind and words is your best bet at keeping him/her safe.
- Help him/her develop a solid presence of mind and act fast when needed. Self-defense martial arts that do not fight back, but block potential attacks, is a good strategy that will come in hand now and even at later stages in his/her life.
- The buddy system is a good way to ensure that your child is not left alone while at school. The buddy system will protect your child, as bullies usually pick on children who are sitting alone. Give your child a whistle if you cannot find a buddy for him/her while he/she is outside.
- Ensure that your child keeps the whistle close to him/her, so that he/she can act quickly. A whistle or a buddy is important, as bullies can follow your child out of the school if they are scorned. The key here is to be prepared, not panic.
- Bullies function by feeding on fear. Teach your child to stand up for himself/herself. Make sure that he/she can adequately protect himself/herself before you teach him/her how to tell a bully "NO."
- As far as possible, give your child the confidence that he/she needs to face the situation on his/her own. This will be a valuable life lesson not only for now, but for later as well.
Find Out The Actual Problem And Discreetly
- More often than not, bullies tend to act in this unruly behaviour because of an underlying issue. This issue might not be visible in plain sight. Try to find out what this issue is, but ensure that you are being discreet while doing this.
- There is a trend that exists in most schools and colleges. Children who are being bullied are threatened to keep quiet or else they get tagged with the word "snitch".
- Although just a 5-letter word, the implications of being called a snitch by others are anything but pleasant. Try to keep the situation as simple as possible.
Get Ready To Be Tough In Front Of Others But Not With Your Child
- This issue is a complicated one, as there will be a back-lash from the parents of the bully. They might put the blame on your child or might say something nasty to get you mad.
- Remember to keep your calm, take deep breaths, count from 10 to 1 and do whatever it takes to solve the issue as gently as possible. If you feel that the parents of the bully are the retaliating kind, then get the proof you need before you talk to them.
- Whatever you do, never blame your child for being a victim. If his/her friends, siblings or any relative tries bringing up the subject, then cut them short.
- Kids who are bullied are over-sensitive, at least for a while, the subject shouldn't be discussed. Remember to stay empathetic to your child, even on your bad days.
- If you genuinely feel that the situation is risky, then use your judgment. Contact the school and needed authorities to stop the bully exactly where he/she stands. Understand the situation well and take a well-thought-out but quick decision for the safety of your precious child.
Also Read: Fun Ways To Handle A Bully
Also Read: Why Some Kids Become Bullies