Bullying episodes may not be very common in school but yes they are present and sometimes our kid can be on the receiving end and sometimes on the giving end. While parents will step in when the child is on the receiving end, we tend to not bother if our kid is the one bullying. Most parents will take an ‘it’s just a joke’ stance and shake off their responsibility. However, do remember that just like you should worry if your kid is on the receiving end of bullying, you must also worry if the kid is bullying others since it does show certain restlessness in the kid.
Some tips below on how to deal with your kid when he/she is bullying others at school:
- Be firm – The first step is to be firm with your child and drive the point home that it is wrong to bully. Show the child that by bullying others he/she is going to lose friends and worse still develop a negative personality. Tell the kid that bullying will mean time outs and punishments at home and in school too. If your kid is narrating incidents of bullying, never encourage them or laugh at them but instead make sure that you convey that bullying is bad.
- Eliminate inspiration – Right from violence on television to violent video games to even someone who is violent in the house, anything could be inspiring the kid. As a mother you will have to look into the source of your kids bullying inspiration and then eliminate it. Some mothers will be surprised that it is their raised voices at home that are making the kid a bully in school. Make sure you keep the child’s interaction with violence to a minimal. Ban television programs and video games that are violent and do try and provide the kid with a calm and happy environment at home.
- Watch siblings – In many cases kids who are bullying in school will be trying the same stunts on the siblings at home or learning from them. So if you have two or more kids do watch for signs of bullying at home. In case an older sibling is bullying the younger one put a stop to it at once and do talk to the kids as often as possible on this subject. Ask them how they would like to be on the receiving end of bullying and try to make them feel more compassion for others.
Kids who bully are usually upset about some situation and as a mother you should try and get to the root cause of the problem. Also do work with the school instead of taking a defensive stance. The school has no personal agenda against you kid and by working in tune with them you will be able to calm the situation much sooner and with least damage. Do not make the mistake of taking it as an attack on your parenting skills since this will only worsen the situation even more.