If you suspect or know that your child is being victimized, abused or bullied, here are some pointers you may consider://www.cnn.com/2012/10/23/health/bullying-suicidal-thoughts/index.html?hpt=he_c2
- Let your child know that it is okay to feel afraid, upset, and anxious – your child is responding in a very normal way. But this does NOT mean it’s okay for the bully to continue.//www.huffingtonpost.com/marlo-thomas/bullying-claims-another-v_b_1214436.html
- Assure your child that he or she is not to responsible for the bullying. Give reassurance that reporting it to you is the right thing to do, and that you’re going to do whatever it takes make the bullying stop.
- If your child has trouble telling you what is wrong try asking direct questions such as “Tell me about lunchtime and recess” and “How is the bus ride to and from school?”
- Be sensitive to any concern your child shares, and show that you are both hearing and believing your child.//www.huffingtonpost.com/sandra-dupont/bullying_b_1581828.html
- Suggest that your child tries to avoid the bullies (choose other activities, move to a different area – ideally near an aide or teacher who can keep an eye out for aggressive behavior). Let your child know that responding at all physically will probably encourage the bullies.
- Provide opportunities in extra-cirricular activities to help your child to make friends with similar interests, and build confidence in social skills. Research approaches and guidance for preparing your children regarding bully experiences;//www.cnn.com/2011/10/11/living/bully-proof-kids-hetter/index.html?hpt=li_c1
- Inform the school’s teachers and administrators of the bullying your child is experiencing, and where/when it tends to occur. Be specific that you expect them to be watchful and to take proper action if they observe any bullying. Tell them you expect that staff will keep your child safe.
You may have some good ideas about how to help your child, too, depending on his/her individual needs, add them below as comments.
Furthermore, if your child is a victim of bullying, he or she may benefit from counseling with a therapist specializing in children. Trained counselors are often a wonderful support for children who are being bullied, because they can help them find appropriate ways to stand up for themselves and deal with the negative emotions they may be experiencing. Cognitive-behavioral therapy and EMDR are two techniques that a psychotherapist may use to help your child get through this difficult situation. Take note of news articles providing insight regarding bullying; //www.cnn.com/2011/10/10/us/ac-360-bullying-study/index.html?hpt=hp_c1
Helpful resources include; //kidshealth.org/teen/your_mind/problems/bullies.html and US Department of Health and Human Services offers flash movies, games, and information about bullying and how to prevent it;www.stopbullyingnow.hrsa.gov/