When a child is bullied, they just want it to stop. There are ways to go about it properly and other ways that can lead to still more violence. When you counsel your child, remember these ten things that they should not do in the event they are bullied.
Everyone has different answers to the bullying problem. Some are helpful and some are not. If your child has become a victim, then the issue has hit home for you. Many of us don’t know how to handle it.
First of all, stay calm. Hear your child out and really listen. If you have to, repeat what they are saying to you so that there are no misunderstandings. Stay neutral and non-judgmental. Your child is counting on you.
What your child should NOT do
Help your child handle the situation effectively. The following are things that they don’t need to do and you don’t need to allude to or suggest to them.
Fight back – Surprise attacks on bullies are seen as premeditated and can get your child in trouble. Throwing the first punch can get them suspended and also precipitate a follow-up attack by the bully. A bully is familiar with violence in some way and will see it as gaining emotional control over your child and a license to continue harassing them physically.
Bring a weapon to school – When others can’t or don’t help, kids can take matters into their own hands. Backed by hurt and rage, they may see killing the bully as their only way out. Unfortunately, it often ends with others getting hurt as well.
Self mutilation – Some students resort to cutting to ease the pain of abuse. Bullying is a form of abuse. It results in low self-esteem and emotional instability that can bring about destructive habits like cutting.
Ignore the problem – This will not make it go away. In fact, it can lead to inappropriate actions on the part of the victimized child like escalated violence. With cyber bullying, law enforcement can get involved and bring charges against the bully for their actions.
Feel guilty – Being bullied is not their fault. Guilt takes all the blame off of the bully and places it on your child.
Go it alone – After a bullying incident, a child will be damaged emotionally. They need the help of a counselor to sort out their feelings and regain the ability to have normal relationships.
Consider suicide as a way out – This goes along with feelings of guilt. A bullied child may feel that their only way to stop it is to kill themselves.
Don’t show your feelings to the bully – Even if you want to cry after being hit or harassed, your child needs to resist. An emotional response is what the bully wants. Don’t give it to him.
Keep it to themselves – Report the incident, especially a physical one. Go to your teacher before school or the principal. Let someone in authority know what is going on. If no one knows, then no one can help.
Begin bullying others – Don’t continue the cycle. Bullies are not to be admired. Learn not to be like them.
Don’t let a bully take away your life, liberty or pursuit of happiness.