Bullying is probably one of the toughest issues to deal with, for both the kids and parents involved. Most parents don’t ever think of their kids being the bully, but rather being the victim – but dealing with both sides is equally as hard.
We want our kids to be happy, positive and calm at home and at school. Unfortunately bullying is real, and this article will take a look at how to deal with bullies at school:
What is Bullying?
StopBullying defines bullying in the following way: “Bullying is unwanted, aggressive behaviour among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behaviour is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time”.
The bully would take actions such as spreading rumours, attacking verbally or physically, excluding the victim or making threats. Being bullied can have a tremendous negative effect on the developing teen or pre-teen, and this behaviour should in no way be justified.
For the Kids
Many times a bully would target someone from which they get a certain reaction. Once they’ve established this power struggle, they will then continue exploiting this person’s insecurities etc.
- Ask Yourself Why: Try to establish why this person is acting out in a negative manner. Are they trying to look powerful, hiding behind their own problems, being bullied themselves or are they jealous? Understanding their actions will help you put things in perspective.
- It’s not Your Fault: Sometimes we cannot help how others act towards us, but how we react is entirely up to us. Tell yourself that it’s not your fault that you are being victimized. Don’t feel ashamed of what you look like, feel or say. Be proud of who you are.
- Learn to Deal with Stress: Finding ways to deal with stress and anxiety will help you to deal with the conflict situation. If you aren’t defensive and act out while being bullied, the bully might move on to the next ‘target’.
- Make Friends with Similar Values: Many times bullying can be a numbers game where you are attacked because you are alone. Make a point of finding other friends who don’t believing in bullying instead of trying to join the bully’s group, because that will only make the situation worse.
- Think of the Bigger Picture: Even though bullying shouldn’t be condoned, it’s helpful to think of the bigger picture. This too will pass, even if it feels like things cannot get worse.
- Boost your Confidence: Do things that make you feel confident, whether it’s practicing a sport, cultural activities or joining a club with like-minded people. Embrace your individuality.
For the Parents
We are all protective of our kids, and it’s hard to believe that your little one might have been acting out at school by undermining and insulting other kids. No matter which side your kid is on, try to look at the underlying issue. What causes the behaviour? How are things at home etc? Keep an open mind and try to work together with the other parents to find a solution.