What to do About Bullying


What to do About Bullying

Children with disabilities can be easy targets for other children who feel like they themselves are under-appreciated or bullied. From teasing and bullying to exclusion, it is important that these moments are stopped before they cause long-term damage in your child.

How can you help prevent your child from being bullied?

Set up a schedule to have daily conversations with your child. Ask them how their day went and what they did. We have this conversation at dinner everynight listing the best parts of our day and the most frustrating. This will help you know if anything is happening with them and if they are being bullied.

Provide positive reinforcement to your child. Sometimes the only positive accolades your child is going to get will be from you at home. But if your child is confident and positive, they are less likely to be a target of bullies.

Encourage your child to join sports teams or other after-school activities. This will allow them to meet new people and make new friends outside of school.

Work closely with teachers, therapists, school nurses, and counselors to ensure that your child has the support he needs at school.

If your child has been bullied in the past, try talking with them about it. Ask how they feel about what happened and what their feelings were at the time. Encourage them to talk about any feelings of anger or frustration that they had after the incident occurred.

What are the signs of bullying?

Bullying may be one of the most common problems of childhood today. Many parents are worried about not only the safety of their children but their mental and emotional health. Bullying can take many forms, such as physical violence, verbal abuse, intimidation or threats, and other actions that intimidate or intentionally hurt another person.

If your child is showing signs of being bullied, it’s important to talk to them about what they are experiencing. This will help open the lines of communication and help you determine if they are experiencing any other issues that might be causing them stress. Some signs that your child may be a victim of bullying include:

Isolation: Your child may refuse to go to school or seems to be depressed and withdrawn at school.

Physical injuries: Bruises on their arms or legs could be signs of bullying.

Unexplained injuries: If an accident does not explain your child’s injuries, it may indicate that someone is hurting them.

Loss of interest in activities: If your child has lost interest in activities they used to enjoy, such as sports or clubs, it could mean they are being bullied.

Changes in mood and personality: A sudden change in your child’s mood could mean that he/she has been bullied.

Excessive crying: crying for no reason or uncontrollably when triggered

Sudden decline in grades: If you notice a sharp decline in grades or your child seems to be struggling academically, there may be a reason beyond just poor performance.

Withdrawal from friends: Children who have been bullied often withdraw from their friends because they don’t want to talk about what happened or get help from others because they feel ashamed or guilty about what happened to them.

What do I do if my child is bullied?

Bullying is a problem in schools across the country. But, unfortunately, it can happen to any student, from any background, at any school.

If your child is being bullied, you first need to talk with them about it. Find out if they’re afraid of the bully or if someone else is doing the bullying for them. You can also find out if other kids are involved and whether or not they are being threatened by those kids as well.

Your next step is to talk to your child’s teacher and principal about what is going on with your child at school. Let them know what type of bullying they are experiencing so they can try to stop it immediately. They may also be able to provide some helpful tips on how you can help protect your child from this type of behavior in the future.

What is the school's responsibility?

As a parent, it can be frustrating to hear about your child being bullied. You may wonder why the school is not doing more to prevent it. Often the schools feel they have limited authority to take action against bullying. But with some collaboration, education, and parental involvement, they might be able to do more than they think. Don't take, "That isn't our responsibility" as an excuse.

The law requires schools to protect students from bullying and harassment. If your child is bullied at school, the school must take action if it knows or reasonably should know about the harassment or bullying, and it has the power to stop it. The school must also take immediate steps to investigate any reported incidents, even outside of school hours or off campus.

The National School Safety Center has a very helpful guide available on their website, which can be found here: http://www.schoolsafety.us/bullyingstatistics.pdf . It’s important to educate yourself on the adverse effects of bullying on your child and how to prevent it from happening at school.

StopBullying.gov. (n.d.). Stop Bullying on the Spot.

Children with disabilities can be easy targets for other children who feel like they themselves are under-appreciated or bullied. From teasing and bullying to exclusion, it is important that these moments are stopped before they cause long-term damage in your child.