Not only can bullying be verbal but can also be physical and even social and it isn’t OK and shouldn’t be considered a normal part of life. In fact it shouldn’t be tolerated.
As parents it is important for us to understand not only how prevalent this issue is but also how much damage it can cause to a child’s life. Unless you or your child have been a victim of bullying, then you certainly won’t be aware of what a devastating affect it can have on someone’s life.
If you may suspect that your child is being bullied your first instinct is going to charge in so that you can protect them. But your goal is one that enables you to help your child as much as possible, and this will take some understanding and planning on your part.
Now what I want you to do is take a very deep breath and use these 5 ways to protect your child from being bullied at school.
Listen To How Your Child Is Being Bullied
The first thing that your child needs to know from you is that you understand just how they are feeling at this time. When being bullied a child often feels angry or ashamed because of what is happening to them.
You may find it hard to hear your child talk to you about feeling angry or ashamed, but it is very important that you do listen to them so that they know that feeling this way is okay.
If your child is finding hard to believe that you understand what they are feeling at this time then they are going to find it hard to talk with you about what to do about the situation.
Unfortunately when we feel ashamed we like to keep a low profile and aren’t willing to raise matters that we find painful to anyone including parents.
Did You Get Bullied As A Child?
If you are able to then talk to your child about your own experiences when you were bullied, teased or rejected as child. However, rather than telling them what you did in order to get even with your bully now is the time when you need to discuss with them what you were feeling at the time.
This will then help to send a message to your child that such experiences are considered normal and can be survived. As well as helping them to learn how to better handle situations with bullies, it will also help them to manage their emotions better when faced with difficult situations.
Now is the perfect opportunity for you to develop a more emotional connection with your child through talking about tough feelings.
Brainstorm Ways To “Tackle” The Bullies
It is vital that you help your child to learn ways to help solve problems they are faced with rather than you solving them for them. So after listening to the way they are feeling now is the time to ask them what they can think they can do about what is happening.
Some of their suggestions may be quite comical and others may turn out to shock you somewhat but accept everything they offer up and help them to then create a plan later on that uses the best ideas suggested that they can then act upon.
Agreeing on a plan of action that is realistic and which you can support will help your child to gain confidence to deal with the situation more effectively. Plus you’ll find it works much better than telling them what they should do.
Is Your Bullying Solution Working?
You must encourage your child now to put the plan devised into action. Why not help them by rehearsing in a playful way what they need to do and then talk to them about how they think it worked out.
Don’t be pushy when doing this, however it is vital that you clearly express to them how important it is that they do work on dealing with the situation.
It doesn’t matter what your child does, you still need to provide them with affirmation that you agree with what they are doing. However, what you don’t want to encourage them to do is use violence as a way of getting back at the bully.
Also you don’t want to tell them that accepting what is happening is okay. Rather try and work on ways to show them that retreating strategically from the situation and seeking out help is a really good idea.
At some point you are of course going to need to speak to your child’s teachers, other parents including those of the child who is doing the bullying. But you won’t be able to do this immediately.
However our 5 ways to protect your child from being bullied at school will provide your child with the foundation that can help them feel more safe and secure in the future.