Parents play a huge role in their children's lives.  Learning a child is bullied can make parents feel helpless too - but you can help!


Learn the signs of bullying, talking to kids, and TAKE ACTION when you learn about bullying behavior!  It takes courage to make a difference!

Bullying takes many forms


Bullying takes many forms.  Bullying can be physical or emotional.  Bullying can occur in person (physical bullying), or via social media (Cyberbullying).  All forms of bullying are equally devestating.  


Boys are more likely to experience physical bullying. Girls are more likely to experience bullying through rumor and exclusion. 


Both boys and girls are equally likely to experience bullying through verbal bullying, threats and damage to property (Ownes and Linder 2010).


Parents: Part of the solution


Why don't kids ask for help?


  • Bullying can make a child feel helpless.  Kids may want to handle it on their own to feel in control again.

  • Kids fear being seen as a tattletale and fear backlash from their family. 

  • Bullying can be humiliating. Kids may not want adults to know what's being said about them - regardless of whether or not it is true or false.

  • Kids may fear judgement for being weak. 

  • Bullied kids may already feel socially isolated and think no one cares or understands.

  • Kids fear being rejected by their peers.  Friends can help protect kids from bullying, and kids fear losing this support.


Signs of being bullied


  • Unexplainable injuries

  • Damaged or lost belongings

  • Frequent head or stomach aches, feeling sick or faking illness

  • Changes in eating habits, skipping meals, binging, not eating lunch at school

  • Diffifulty sleeping, nightmares

  • Sudden loss of friends or avoidance of social situations

  • Feeling of helplessness or decreased self-esteem

  • Self-destructive behaviors such as running away, hurting themselves, or talk of suicide


Signs of depression


  • Decreased energy, fatigue, insomina

  • Loss of interest in pleasurable activities, social withdrawal

  • Unexpected aches/pains, decreased/increased appetite, weight loss or gain

  • Prolonged sadness, uncontrollable crying, feelings of guilt and worthlessness, low self-esteem, hopelessness

  • Irritability, anger, worry, inability to concentrate, indecision, disorganized

  • Drug and alcohol use

  • Thoughts of death and suicide


Bullies can be victims too


Bullying is a complex behavior.  Research on how people become bullies shows that often people who are bullies, are also bullied themselves.  Bullying can happen at home, by peers, or in other environments.  The same feelings that are felt by those who are bullied, can be the same why people act as bullies.  It is important to get help not only for victims, but consider the bully might be a silent victim.


Is your child a bully?


It's hard for any parent to believe that their child is a bully, but sometimes it happens. But just because your child bullies doesn't mean that he or she will bully forever. Parents are one of the best resources to help their child stop bullying and start interacting positively with their classmates.


What can you do to stop your child from bullying?


  • Take it seriously. Don't treat bullying as a passing phase. Even if you're not worried about long-lasting effects on your child, another child is being hurt.

  • Talk to your child to find out why he or she is bullying. Often, children bully when they feel sad, angry, lonely, or insecure and many times major changes at home or school may bring on these feelings.

  • Help build empathy for others and talk to your child about how it feels to be bullied.

  • Ask a teacher or a school counselor if your child is facing any problems at school, such as if your child is struggling with a particular subject or has difficulty making friends. Ask them for advice on how you and your child can work through the problem.

  • Ask yourself if someone at home is bullying your child. Often, kids who bully are bullied themselves by a parent, family member, or another adult.


SOURCE: National Crime Prevention Council, 2014



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