The sad fact is, bullying happens. Everyday, and equally to both boys and girls. Bullying comes in three main forms: Physical, Verbal, and Social. It can happen at school, on the playground, on the school bus, in your own neighborhood, and even over the internet.
According to the Stop Bullying website bullying is defined as unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Both kids who are bullied and who bully others may have serious, lasting problems.
When your child is being bullied, you should alert school officials to the problem and work with them on solutions. Since bullying often occurs outside the classroom, talk with your principal or school guidance counselor. They might not be aware that there is a problem. Write down and report all bullying instances to the school. Be aware of symptoms of bullying, children often fear going to school, have difficulty paying attention in class, or develop symptoms like headaches or stomach aches.
Teach your child when and how to ask a trusted adult, teacher, or coach for help. Recognize that bullying is a serious problem and acknowledge your child’s feelings about being bullied. Teach them how to respond by looking their bully in the eye, standing tall and speaking in a calm firm voice, and teaching them to say I don’t like what you’re doing, please don’t talk to me like that.
Remember, bullying is different from teasing or general fighting. A bully has power over another child, bullies try to control other children by scarring them, being picked on over and over can make your child a victim and thus easier to bully by others, and bullying usually happens when other children are watching.
Bullying is not OK, talk to your child about bullying and make sure they know they can talk to you if something happens to them. If they need to talk to an impartial third party, seek the help of your pediatrician or speak with our doctors at Pediatric Urgent Care. Be a positive role model and show children that they can get what they want without teasing, threatening, or hurting someone.