Bullying is more common than most parents want to acknowledge. It can cause your child to
have adjustment problems, have a low level of self-confidence, and experience difficulty in making friends.
Bullying can be physical, verbal, or psychological. To help your child, you need to accept the fact
that your child is a victim. Look for signs like tummy aches, not wanting to go to school, or
worrying for no apparent reason. However, confirm this fact with him or her before you do
Here are some ways that you can help your child.
Listen to Your Child
When children are bullied, they feel embarrassed and fearful. They automatically assume that it
is their fault. Don’t make your child feel as though they brought it upon themselves. Instead, be
supportive and try and stay calm. If you react strongly, your children will not talk to you
because they will worry that they are upsetting you. Hear what your child is saying and then
you can take it from there.
Never Personalize the Bullying
You may have been bullied at school and seeing your child going through the same thing can
rake up old scars and wounds. Instead, use this opportunity to delve into responses from others
that may or may not have been useful. Let your child know the things that worked and didn’t
work. That way, your child will have something to fall back on.
Avoid Retaliation
Watching your child suffering can be painful and you may be tempted to take matters into your
hands. Refrain from doing that. Do not try talking to the bullies or their parents. It will not help
or resolve the issue. Calm down and come up with solutions to help your child.
Teach Your Child How to React
Most bullies pick on children who tend to react and get upset. They also choose kids, who are
pushovers and cannot stand up for themselves. So, let your child learn to stand their ground. It
can be scary for your child but it is a necessity. Also, teach your child a few ways to avoid
bullies. When your child learns to react appropriately, they will feel much better and safer.
Be Supportive
If your child feels threatened or is pushed to the corner, they may become physical or even
retaliate verbally. Make sure you inform your child that you are there and they will not get
punished for such a reaction. Your child will have to face the consequences of their act in the
school but home should be a safe haven.
Speak to School Management
In case the bullying is affecting your child’s day-to-day life and performance in school, you may
have to consult teachers and the school principal. Usually, schools have ways to tackle bullying. Find out how they handle incidents of bullying and let them know about your child. Let the
teachers and the principal empower your children so that they realize there are solutions and
ways to handle the problem.
Bullying can result in low self-confidence and self-esteem. So, encourage them to do things they
are good at. With the help of encouragement and positive reinforcement, your children will
realize that they cannot control what other people say or do but they can control how they
respond to these people.
You may also want to consider seeking professional advice from counselors or psychologists if
you think your child needs it.

About Prabha Kulkarni

Prabha is a retired teacher, who enjoys writing on various topics. Most of her current writing is currently influenced by her young grand-daughters, as she grapples with the differences in the world they will grow up in, and the one in which she spent the best years of her life. Prabha is also a proud technophile who plans to start her blog soon.


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