Given that this week is Anti-Bullying week, November 11th – 15th I thought I would write a post to help children avoid bullying from both sides; becoming a bully and being bullied.
I am a parent therefore I am no expert so this blog is purely my personal opinion only but after being bullied for a few years when I was younger I certainly have had the experience of it.
In addition having children, especially one with Down Syndrome, it is something I really do not want them to experience even though I often hear regularly “Children are just mean….. they all get bullied”
This shouldn’t be the norm and I feel as parents it is up to us to educate our children on this behaviour as change does start with us.
Who is a Bully?
A bully is defined as
‘a person who habitually seeks to harm or intimidate those whom they perceive as vulnerable’
As a verb bullying is defined as
‘seek to harm, intimidate, or coerce (someone perceived as vulnerable)’
So generally this can be anyone in my eyes who is being nasty to someone else. Now whilst I get not everyone has to get on or like everyone, it doesn’t give any child or adult the right to intimidate or worse, harm another human being. Bullying doesn’t have to be physical, it can be vocal and not even in given face to face given that cyber bullying is on the rise.
How to Avoid being Identified as a Bully?
I would like to think it was quite simple not to become a bully but I do understand the pressures young children get today from peers, from wanting to be accepted to be part of the ‘right crowd’ however it does come back to us as parents to talk to our children daily. To explain and encourage positive behaviour,
Three Ways to Help Your Child Who Maybe Bullying Others
- Talk to them to help them understand how much harm they are causing by bullying someone (many adults never forget these emotional scars and damage can truly affect someones life)
- Talk to them to help them understand why they are actually bullying someone; is that the only way to know how to react to someone, are they angry at something else and if needs be speak to someone that can help them (a counselor)
- Talk to them to understand the consequences involved in bullying others as it can often lead to expulsion and even arrest
For further guidance check this guide out https://www.wikihow.com/Stop-Being-a-Bully
How to Avoid Bullying
After being bullied myself this is quite hard to write but I feel so important. Bullies tend to pick on those more vulnerable, those less confident and those who appear unsure. Now whilst words can help a child ‘Say No’ simply saying to your child ‘Stand up for Yourself’ may not help them as much as putting actions into practice that can support your child on a daily basis.
Five Ways You Can Help Your Child Avoid Being Bullied
- Instill confidence into them daily
- Consider self defence classes to protect themselves
- Practice affirmations together
- Encourage them to make friends and ask for support from their friends
- Get them to tell someone in authority immediately
A link that may guide you further with online bullying
I write this from a parents point of view and nothing else, not to patronise or sound condescending but I do believe that if we all choose to educate our children about the seriousness of bullying then it should start to reduce it. You could ask them to watch this
I do hope one of these resources might help you as a parent and whilst this is something completely different to what I write about usually, I am all for inclusion matters, every child matters, education for all, changing attitudes and raising awareness.
I’m curious were you bullied at school? If you would like to reach out to me privately then please get in touch here
As always. thank you for reading and
Until Next Time