Bullying advice can be controversial.
So many of the Anti-bullying programs and campaigns have failed and others have actually made things worse.
I know you are coming from a place of love and concern to help your child. I encourage you to keep an open mind and continue to find solutions that work for you and support your child during this difficult time.
Use the solutions that work for you and feel free to put a stop to any attempts at solutions that do not appear to serve the purpose of stopping bullying.
It is interesting how many of the more useful solutions are the same regardless of the part of bullying whether your child gives it out or receives it. I hope you find all the guidance and information you need.
This is my best piece of bullying advice. As you proceed through this website you will read this often. Lets face it...we get a knee jerk reaction when our child is hurting. Momma or Pappa bear to the rescue. It comes with being a parent. However, your first reaction may not help the situation.
This is not a "normal" part of life as some bullying beliefs would have you believe. Approaching ways to stop bullying and prevent it from continuing require you to be calm and rational. Your child needs to see you model how to deal with crisis and not make matters worse by adding your own anger and anxieties.
Second, you need to deal with your feelings and understand your reactions before you involve your child. Your feelings are not something you want to add onto the pile of things your child has to deal with. Understanding your reaction is a good start. Are they based in old hurts from when you were bullied? Or perhaps a different trigger? Deal with your issues first.
Then take a deep breath and remain calm.
You may have heard something or got a call from the school or perhaps you recognize some of the warning signs and want to make it stop before it escalates levels.
Now that you are calm, you can discuss the situation with your child. Let your child know they are not alone, not in trouble and you want to help (not save them) them deal with this. Get your child to talk about bullying and collect all the information and details.
Now you know what you are dealing with and you can consider the level of bullying and possible solutions.
Go through the problem solving process with your child and choose the solutions that you both agree will work and take action.
Bullying Advice: Gentle Reminder: You are doing this with your child not to them or for them. It can be challenging but this is the best way for your child to learn from the experience.
Bullying Advice: Gentle Reminder: You are doing this with your child not to them or for them. It can be challenging but this is the best way for your child to learn from the experience
If at first you don't succeed...try...try...and try again If your first solution did not work...try another and continue to work with your child to find something that works to make the bullying stop.
This is an important piece of bullying advice. Many times you hear about a bullycide and the parents knew the child was being bullied but they thought it was dealt with. They did not realize there child was still suffering.
Sometimes it is recognized and an intervention fails...and the victim could end up worse off...now they are being called a rat and the bully has real reasons for hurting them: revenge for tattling.
Alternatively, even if it is stopped there may be long term effects on grades, making friends, feelings of depression etc.
Follow up with your child. Be aware of any further warning signs or effects and if necessary continue to advocate for your child. Go back to problem solving and find more solutions. At the very least your child will know she/he is not alone.
In the end, the best bullying advice I can give is be there for your child. They need you to listen and be there for them. They need your love even more than the guidance. Get tuned in to them and really listen. You may not fully understand bullying and you may make mistakes along the way but if they know they are not alone it will go along way to lifting some of the burden.
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