Childhood bullying across all ages has increased tenfold over the past 20 years, sadly making it a regular occurrence in the playground. From name-calling and teasing to physical acts of violence, there are various types of psychological and physical forms of bullying that happen in schools all over the country. School is supposed to be one of the most exciting and fun periods of a child’s life, where they meet their friends and discover what they want to be when they grow up. Instead, many children are subjected to a torrent of abuse throughout their entire school lives, with a small proportion even turning to suicide.
Parents are also the victims when their child is being bullied, as apart from informing the school about the situation, there is very little they can do or say to the bully or bullies themselves. This doesn’t mean that a parent’s role of protector stops however, and there are a number ways you can give your child piece of mind while the school clamps down on the bullying.
Assure Your Child
First things first – make sure your child knows that they have all the support they need. Without your faith and help, your child will be all alone in dealing with the bullying, and they need to know that you’re available any time of day to talk things over. They also need to know that you’re there to take action, and no matter how much they scream and shout, this may mean contacting the bully’s parents, as well as the school.
Give Advice on How to Deal With the Bully
Depending on the type of bullying, there are a number of ways you can advise your child on how to deal with the situation. For example, if the bullying is just teasing, then it’s best to first let your child deal with the situation. We all know how cruel kids can be, and sometimes it just takes a common interest for children to make friends. Sometimes the best thing to take a step back and view the situation from a distance.
However if the bullying begins to get out of hand, whether it’s on school trips around the UK or in the classroom, then you will have to inform your child’s teachers, assuming they haven’t already contacted you. Physical violence against your child should never be tolerated, and you must do everything to ensure that your child’s classroom is a safe and secure place for them to learn.
It’s best to provide your child with reasoning to why the bullying situation might be happening. Many bullies lash out because they have bad home lives, or they themselves are being bullied. Either way, sitting your child down and explaining why bullies like to project their insecurities on other people is a great way to start the healing process.
If you child’s school does its job correctly, then the bully will be pulled aside, warned, removed from class, or even suspended from school. Unless your child has to physically protect themselves from a bully, then you should never advocate retaliation – your child must learn that bullying is unacceptable under any circumstances.
Written on behalf of Knowsley Safari Park, they aim to deliver useful information and advice relating to a range of areas such as assisting parents and families.