How These Strategies For Dealing With Bullies Will Help Your Kids At School
Any child knows cases of his/her peers being bullied at school, and some have experienced bullying personally. It always feels extremely stressful, devastating and humiliating. Knowing how to behave if being bullied by another child or teen and how to withstand a school bully is crucial for any child. Parents should also be aware of things they can do to help their children. This article reveals strategies to deal with bullying in school.
Bullying is a serious problem – over 60% of all children admit that they or their classmates have been bullied at school. According to the stats on cyberbulling (the online form of insulting children by their peers), 1/3 of all kids have experienced public humiliation on the Internet at least once.
School bullies may harm other children in different ways. They may push, tease, call names, threaten, spread lies or rumors. Some bullies damage other children’s stuff or demand their pocket money, refuse to talk and ignore a child. As a result of such actions, bullied child may lose sleep, become anxious or nervous, unwilling to go to school, feel hurt, scared, depressed and in some really serious cases – even suicidal, which demands immediate interference and help.
There are various reasons why a child may start bullying other kids. A bully may want to look more powerful or cool, to become popular or attract attention. Some children learn an aggressive behavior from their families. Bullies often choose their victims among kids who seem to be physically or emotionally weaker (for example, those who get upset easily) or those who are “different” and vary from the rest. These can be children of other race, religion or sexual orientation, smarter kids who are more successful in studies, those whose appearance differ from the others (for example overweight kids) and sadly – physically challenged children.
What can be done?
Whatever is the reason or method, bullying may result in serious consequences and needs to be stopped. Here are strategies for dealing with bullies in schools that you and your child should know.
Tell adults. First of all, children should tell their parents, teachers or other adults they trust that they are being bullied. Your duty as a grown-up is to help to find the right solution. Explain to your kids that it’s important to keep telling each time bullying happens. There is no reason why bullying should be tolerated or kept in secret.
Avoid and ignore the bully. Tell your kids that sometimes the best way is to show that you are not interested in listening to insults and just don’t care about the mean child’s opinion. Teach your children to abstract away from it. Sooner or later a bully will understand that paying them any further attention is useless.
Act brave and stay calm. Teach your little ones not to respond to offensive words and not to show their emotions, as such reaction is exactly what a bully wants to achieve. His/her provocations shouldn’t impact your children and affect their mood. Remember that the problem is not about them, but about offender’s behavior.
Stay along with a friend. Explain to your kids that a good friend will always help them to withstand a bully. Advise them to cooperate with a classmate and always go with him/her through less crowded places where they may meet a bully face to face. Likewise, teach your children to offer support if their friend is being bullied.
Look at the situation from a different angle. Describe to your kid that a child or teen who is trying to hurt or insult his/her peers is clearly an unhappy person, who lacks self-confidence or any outstanding qualities and simply is ill-bred. Tell that it’s important to stay positive and not to try to take control over uncontrollable things. Just remember that no difficulties last forever and soon the unpleasant situation with a mean child will be over too.
Protect yourself. Ignoring is the best way to handle school bullies. But make sure your kids understand it clearly that in a situation when they happens to be hurt physically, and there is no one around to help, they should definitely stand for themselves. Teach them to be brave enough for it and remember that in extreme situations their safety comes first.
It is important for parents to explain to their kids these strategies against bullying and prevent stressful situations and conflicts before they develop and have any serious consequences.