Bullying is perhaps one of the most heartbreaking topics in modern parenting. Whether you hear it directly from your child or from an authority at school, it is definitely a situation to take very seriously. Online and educational communities have recently opened up communication regarding bullying and the far-reaching effects it has on a child’s development, physical health, and emotional wellbeing.
Most of us can remember being teased about something when we were growing up. There are countless ways in which we differ from one another as children and teenagers. But, it’s important to acknowledge those differences in a positive way. If you suspect that your child is being bullied, there are a few things that you can do.
If your child tells you that they have been teased at school, it is important to talk about it. Let them do most of the talking, but feel free to ask questions to get additional information. Avoid placing blame and simply hear them out.
Watch your child for signs of teasing or bullying. Have they become more withdrawn? Do they do things to avoid going to school? Do they have any new health problems that could be stress-related?
While many parents would like to march down to the school and fix the problem themselves, it’s important to allow your child the opportunity to solve the problem on their own. Ask your son or daughter what they think might make the situation better. If they respond with an appropriate solution, support their decision and encourage their ability to handle the issue.
While teasing and bullying can be a difficult experience for children, parents can help turn it into a time of empowerment and an important life lesson.