Finally bullying is receiving the public attention that it deserves. And as you are well aware, if one of your children should ever be faced with the terrible experience of facing a bully, it isn’t the kind of problem you can just ignore and hope it will go away on its own. The situation must be dealt with immediately as well with caution. Use our steps below to stop bullying now!
1. From the start, take this kind of situation very seriously. If you can quickly nip a potential bully problem in the bud, it can help protect your child from further harm and also help to alleviate any fears he or she may be having. Even if you happen to think your child might be exaggerating, take the time to listen and take the situation seriously.
2. Find any underlying issue that may be the source of the bullying. Recent studies have shown that children with weight issues or allergies are bullied more frequently than children without these issues. Of course this is no excuse for the bullying. However, it can help you understand precisely what is going on. Discuss the situation with your children. Make sure they understand the bully is the one at fault, and that they are not to blame.
3. Be familiar with what the warning signs are for a bullying situation. If all of a sudden your child is hesitant to talk about their day, loses their enthusiasm for school or becomes withdrawn, these are all signs that bullying could potentially be occurring. Do your best to get your child to open up to you and share what is going on in their life so that you will be able to help him or her.
4. Use movies or television programs to provide your child with help. Hollywood does sometimes produce valuable things, and when it comes to bullying, this is true. These mediums can be used to teach your kids about bullying and what they can do if it ever happens to them.
5. Stress how important it is to notify adults about bullying. Whenever a bully strikes, children need to receive help from adults. Teach your kids to let a trusted coach or favorite teacher know about any bullying incident they come across.
6. Provide total support to your child. Be sure your bullied child isn’t picked on by siblings at home and make sure everyone backs him or her 100%. Children need to be reassured, especially when peers are causing stress for them.
7. If necessary, call the police or school. If the school gets involved, this should help to resolve the bullying problem. It does depend on how the situation is handled. Keep in mind that it may not be visible or obvious to school staff and teachers what your kid is going through. If you call the police, it will send a strong signal that you are very serious about the situation and will most likely encourage the bully to stop their harassing behavior.
8. Give your child plenty of praise for doing what is right. It can be very hard for a child to tell on anther child, particularly if they are afraid of retaliation if they do. Any time one of your children speaks up about a bully, make sure they know they have made the right choice.
9. Become familiar with your state laws regarding bullying. There have probably been significant changes to laws since you were a kid. These days, teachers and parents tend to have more power to clearly define boundaries around bullying. You will be able to produce more effective result if you are familiar with what your particular state and local laws are. A good starting point is the Policies & Laws section on StopBullying.gov
10. Show your children how there is life beyond school. Sit down and have a chat with them about how school is just one phase in life. From their perspective it might seem like school lasts forever. However, it important they they understand that it will come to an end, and that there is life beyond it.
To a certain extent, bullying might be accepted as just one of those things that happens in life. However, when it crosses the line, that’s when you need to act quickly. Prepare you children for the potential of bullying, and should a bully ever try to both a child of yours, take the necessary steps to resolve the problem quickly.