What do you do when you or someone is being bullied? Bullying is a very touchy subject , more with children than anyone else. Children feel that if they say something than they are tattling. We need to get out children to understand that , telling on a bully is NOT tattling, it is speaking out and taking a stand.
Children, most of the time, do not tell anyone that they are being bullied because of a few reasons. Those reasons usually are:
Embarrassed Scared Ashamed Or they do not want to be known as a ” Tattle Tail”
Children do not realize that, by telling someone who the bullying is, and what is going on, is not being a tattle tail. It takes so much courage t be able to tell someone who are being bullied, and even more courage to let someone know who that bully is! If the child allows bullying to continue without taking a stand , it can lead to emotional scarring. Remember , bullying does not only cause emotional scarring , but can cause physical as well. We want to try to prevent that from happening.
It is best to talk to your child about bullying. Not only about them being bullied , but about them bullying someone as well. Children need to learn the difference between playful teasing and actual bullying. At one point or another we were all teased, whether by friends or siblings. But most of the time ,that was all in just playful fun. When it starts becoming hurtful and starts leaving scars, whether physical or emotional, it becomes way more than just playful teasing.
As a child I was forced to leave my school and start my junior year in a new one. I truly thought that I was not going to make it. I was spit on, laughed at, tripped or pushed walking down the hallways. I even got my book bag ripped away from me and thrown in a lake walking home one day. My homework, books, everything that I had in my bag was ruined. I remember coming home and just crying my eyes out. No child should ever have to experience this kind of emotional and physical abuse.
I hear some parents telling their child ” it will go away, just ignore them and they will move on to the next child as long as you do not show them that they are bothering you” Umm not a good lesson to be teaching your children. We want to teach our children that ,bullying is an immensely big deal, and children have actually committed suicide. We can not teach our children to just ignore it to let another child take the abuse. We all need to stand together on this issue.
You need to explain to your child that none of this is their fault. Let them know that you are here for them and you will figure out how to stop the bullying together, A good first step is to, find out who the bullying laws in your community. It is good for a child to have a buddy system as well. Explain to your child that it is good to hide your emotions around a bully. Sometimes walking away and ignoring them , not showing that you are angry, ,upset,or hurt sometimes helps. BUT, you still need to talk to an adult about what is going on.
The two biggest reasons why someone gets bullied is because of appearance and social status. Teach your child about cyber bullying as well.
Studies show that abuse by peers can cause mental health problems. If you sense that your child is being bullies , but he/she will not talk to you about it, look for signs. Some warning signs are:
- faking illness
- change in eating habits
- nightmares or difficulty sleeping
- lower self-esteem
- avoidance of social gatherings, or people in general
- self-destructive behavior
- lost or destroyed clothing,electronics,etc.
- unexplained injuries
- extreme stress
You need to interfere as soon as possible. the sooner the better,that lets them know that bullying or being bullied is unacceptable!
A link to statistics: http://www.pacer.org/bullying/about/media-kit/stats.asp