Jump to content

What to do when your child is being bullied


  • Please log in to reply
3 replies to this topic

#1 AmityD

Posted 22 November 2011 - 02:21 PM

My son started school this year. And with that milestone the warm embrace and constant supervision of childcare workers and kindy teachers was replaced with a big school yard, full of big kids.

On his first day, as I tearfully waved goodbye to my baby, my husband enquired as to who would be taking him to the toilet when he needed to go. ‘No one’ I responded, ‘It’s school, he will go by himself.’ Slightly concerned by this realisation my over-protective husband then asked how many teachers were on duty during lunch and recess, only to be horrified when I replied that I was pretty sure it was only one or two. ‘But how can they watch all those kids?’ he asked, clearly thinking of the 1:4 ratio we have been used to. I reminded him again this was school, our little boy’s days of being carefully monitored were over, he was growing up.

Luckily my son adjusted to this big new world far easier than his father did and settled in to school wonderfully. And there have been no incidences to give me any concern about him sharing the school-yard with all those big kids, until last week. As we were walking home one day he casually informed me that he “got bullied today,” making my heart jump into my throat, as I calmly asked him to explain.

Thankfully I quickly realised it was nothing too major, with some year 2 boys holding the door shut when he was in the toilet and then jumping out to scare him as they let go. But still, the thought of anyone being mean to my precious, sensitive, gentle little boy had me seeing red. As he recounted the story it took everything in me not to march back to the school, grab those little brats by the collar and swiftly inform them not to even look at my child ever again. But of course I did nothing of the sort. Although I may have shot them a few evil eyes during pick up the next day (which I don’t think they noticed.)

Because, the more rational part of me knows it was just a case of kids being kids. As I told my son, sometimes boys in year 2 do silly things to show off in front of their friends, but you just tell the teacher if they are upsetting you. Which he had already done, with the anti bullying policy drummed into them from day one these days. So I resisted my inner mama lioness, stayed composed and left it to his teacher to handle. But this relatively harmless incident did give me a small insight into the devastation I would feel if my child was being seriously bullied. As a parent every instinct you have is to want to protect them, so what do you do when they are being hurt emotionally or physically outside of your control? Do you teach them to walk away, to fight back, to tell the teacher, not to dob, what is the right answer? It’s one thing teaching a 5 year old to immediately tell his teacher, but if your child is 15 the repercussions of that can make things a lot more complicated.

Controversially, an American human behavioural specialist, Dr John Demartini, who was in Sydney last week to lecture on the Benefits of the Bully says parents of bullied children need to back off and let them take greater control of their lives.

"A kid who is bullied is a by-product of over-support," he claimed. "If you have an over-protective mummy or daddy and over-protective everything and you think that everything has to be nice, you are guaranteed to be attracting a bully.

He also stated that bullies broke their victim's dependency and gave them a wake-up call, yet were unlikely to target children who fight back. "If kids go out there and learn martial arts, learn how to be intelligent and have friends, bullies will drop off," he said.

However, this opinion was panned by anti-bullying experts, with Australia's pre-eminent anti-bullying authority, Dr Ken Rigby stating violence was never the answer.

"Fighting is not something any reasonable education consultant would suggest as a means of dealing with bullying," said Dr Rigby. "I think the education department would be horrified at the idea of the man promoting that view.

So what are anguished parents to do when their child is being bullied? Anyone who watches nightly current affairs programs or listens to talkback radio knows that there are far too many families out there dealing with this devastating issue. And sadly the teenage suicide rate, often a result of schoolyard bullying, tells an even more tragic story.

It’s clearly an emotive issue that provokes a strong response. Earlier this year, when a YouTube video of schoolboy Casey Heynes body-slamming his bully Ritchard Gale hit the media it became a national story that continued for weeks. Commentators were split, with some applauding the serially bullied Haynes for fighting back and others cautioning the glorification of his return violence. I know I found it very hard to explain to my son why Casey was being labeled a hero when he had chosen to hit back, something that we teach him is never ok. However, I know if I was Casey’s mum a part of me would have wanted to do exactly what he did to the kid who had made his life such a misery.

So how do we as parents prevent our kids from being bullied, or doing the bullying themselves? And what do you do when it continues despite all your best efforts to address it?

I think the fact we are so much more aware of the issue now is at least a start in the right direction. I was bullied for a period when I moved to a new high school, but would never have known to put that name to it. To me it was just a part of high school that had to be endured. However I sincerely hope things will be different for my son’s generation. I’m sure there will always be bullies, but I hope the kids that have been taught from their first day of school that it’s unacceptable will at least know it must be stamped out, rather than endured.

Has your child ever experienced bullying? How did you handle it and were you happy with the way the school dealt with it? And how do you teach your kids to deal with bullying?



#2 reng

Posted 25 November 2011 - 10:51 AM

My son is in Kindy and our school has a really good way of dealing with bullying.  It's a small school, which might help, and they have a mentoring system where the big kids are responsible for a small kid each (a buddy).  

The buddies tend to watch out for their small kid in the playground and this appears to reduce the bullying.

However, it's not all plain sailing!  We had a note sent home last term from the principal saying that V had been seen fighting with another boy in the playground.  The school rang and said "don't worry too much, it's policy to send out this letter when we have an incident, but I want to let you know that V was retaliating not instigating"  "ok" "a boy in his class and the boy's big brother were sitting on V in the playground, V pushed them off and pushed the boy in his class over and pushed his head into the ground"  "umm, that sounds like an over-reaction on V's part"  "yes, we have talked to him about how to respond to being bullied, and if you could also talk to him about this, we would appreciate it."

Since then, no issue and V and the boy in his class have become good friends.  Go figure!

#3 baby mozart

Posted 14 February 2012 - 05:18 AM

i tell my son,this is your own thing
just do it if you want

#4 idignantlyright

Posted 14 February 2012 - 05:35 AM

QUOTE (AmityD @ 22/11/2011, 03:21 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}>
Thankfully I quickly realised it was nothing too major, with some year 2 boys holding the door shut when he was in the toilet and then jumping out to scare him as they let go. But still, the thought of anyone being mean to my precious, sensitive, gentle little boy had me seeing red. As he recounted the story it took everything in me not to march back to the school, grab those little brats by the collar and swiftly inform them not to even look at my child ever again. But of course I did nothing of the sort. Although I may have shot them a few evil eyes during pick up the next day (which I don’t think they noticed.)

That isn't really bullying. He may be your baby and yes if it were my DD or DS I would have been a little upset to, there are kids on the receiving end of stuff much much worse than that.

Has your child ever experienced bullying? How did you handle it and were you happy with the way the school dealt with it? And how do you teach your kids to deal with bullying?

Not going to go into full lengthy details as I have posted full details before. DS#2 was bullied by the same 2 kids for a long time, one eventually got expelled in high school for trying to set DS's hair on fire.
DD12 was bullied more in primary school by one little girl whose parents have gone overboard in their protectiveness(there is a story behind it). DD's method of coping was to just not play with the same girls this other girl was playing with. Eventually the other girls realised what a bully she was, and she ended up with only one friend as everyone else left her.




1 user(s) are reading this topic

0 members, 1 guests, 0 anonymous users

 

6 tips for a day out with a baby and toddler

Outings can be lots of fun with the kids, but there are inevitable challenges. Here's some information about days out to help you be a little more prepared.

Getting labour started: tips for a natural induction

When your baby?s due date comes and goes without so much as a pop - let alone a bang - it can be disheartening. Mums and a doula share their stories of natural inductions.

My four months of breastfeeding madness

You imagine that everyone is thinking badly of you, and you tell yourself you have to keep trying. Even though you are in an impossible situation, you still won't give yourself a break.

Little girl's foul-mouthed ice bucket challenge viewed by millions

It starts out innocently enough, but soon Scarlett-Rose Davis is letting loose with an emphatic swearword.

Australian push for compensated surrogacy

A team of Australia fertility experts has advocated legalising commercial surrogacy.

Clever panda fakes pregnancy

News that a giant panda was pregnant prompted much excitement, but it appears there were never any cubs on the way.

'I survived placenta percreta'

When writing her birth plan, Simone Pavil included an item most women wouldn?t even think about: what should happen if she was put on life support. The mum had the potentially fatal condition placenta accreta.

Managing personal space as a mum

In the midst of the early parenting years, our bodies and minds can seemingly be overtaken by our offspring. How can we balance our need for personal space with the needs of our children?

'If love could have saved you, you'd have never left'

The words "spontaneous abortion" on the hospital paperwork really got to me. My baby died; I didn't spontaneously decide to abort him.

15 classic Aussie ads

Watch some of the classic Australian ads of the 80s, 90s and 00s, and remember the catchphrases and jingles we all used to know so well ...

For and against

Should Blue Ivy have been at the VMAs?

Many were quick to condemn Beyonce and Jay Z after appearing on stage at the MTV Video Music Awards with their two-year-old daughter, but others thought it was a sweet family moment. What do you think?

Toddler attacked at gym creche

Two-year-old girl Eva Ness was left with a black eye and bite marks on her face and body after an altercation with an older child at a health club's child-minding facilities. Now her parents are calling for the centre to be closed.

Pregnancy a tricky matter of timing for FIFO couples

Manipulating rosters, coordinating 'conjugal' visits, working on site with your partner; getting pregnant can prove stressful for FIFO workers.

WIN a $100 RedBalloon for Dad

Enter now for your chance to win 1 of 5 $100 RedBalloon experience vouchers. Helping you make Dad's Day EXTRA HAPPY.

Carseats have twice as many germs as a toilet

Most parents know their child's carseat is not always squeaky clean, but they might not realise just how dirty it really is.

Doctors remove foetus from 'medical marvel' after 36 years

Doctors in India have removed the skeleton of a foetus that had been inside a woman for 36 years.

Nine months in six seconds: new parents' Vine clip a hit

We?ve seen some memorable time-lapse pregnancy and birth announcement videos before. Now one new couple has taken it to the extreme, capturing it all in just a six-second Vine video.

Sonia Kruger speaks of baby joy

Celebrity mum-to-be Sonia Kruger has spoken candidly about using donor eggs and IVF to fall pregnant at age 48.

Dressing to not impress: life through the eyes of a three-year-old

When it comes to getting dressed, my three-year-old has only one criterion: ?I don?t want to look beautiful.? And now I've worked out why.

Win back some precious time and get FREE coupons

Membership to eBay's Bubs? Corner is free and includes a $10 coupon to spend on nappies each month - a win for multitasking mums!

Download now: Essential Kids Activity Finder app

Got bored kids? Quickly find the best activities for kids wherever you are in Australia with the Essential Kids app.

 
Advertisement
 
Advertisement
 
 
 

What's hot on EB

WIN a $100 RedBalloon for Dad

Enter now for your chance to win 1 of 5 $100 RedBalloon experience vouchers. Helping you make Dad's Day EXTRA HAPPY.

Win back some precious time and get FREE coupons

Membership to eBay's Bubs? Corner is free and includes a $10 coupon to spend on nappies each month - a win for multitasking mums!

Do you suffer from Precious Firstborn Syndrome?

Testing ?no more tears? shampoo in your own eyes, warming cucumber sticks so they're not cold straight from the fridge, waking a sleeping baby to check they?re still breathing: these are all symptoms of Precious Firstborn Syndrome.

Ezra's tragic death not in vain, mum says

Little Ezra was a "Harry Houdini" who loved trying to escape the family home. Now, after his tragic death, his parents are doing what they can to help others.

7 mistakes old hands make with new babies

As I sat across the table from my friend ? me, a seasoned mother of three; her, a brand new mum ? I thought of all the mistakes an old-hand parent can make when visiting a newborn baby.

Video: When adults act like children

Ever wondered what would happen if adults were allowed to act like children? This dad's hilarious video clip will give you an idea of what life would be like.

Mums hit hardest as flu cases skyrocket

The number of confirmed cases of influenza in Australia has doubled the number for the same time last year - and women are 25 per cent more likely to get it.

The mum who had four babies in nine months

Feeling exhausted due to the demands of caring for a baby? Imagine the life of this mum, who gave birth to three boys and one girl in just nine months.

Everything baby at Big W

Lowest prices on everything baby, only at Big W. Sale starts August 4 and ends August 20 2014.

Going viral

Daycare death shows licensing need

A baby's tragic death in a family daycare centre has underlined a need for better licensing laws in the US.

Personalised baby gifts

We've scoured the internet to find gorgeous personalised keepsakes and nursery decor to record baby name and dates. They make great gifts for christenings, name days and birthdays! (All prices in AU.)

 

Mind, body, beauty, life

Making time for me

We look at your wellbeing, covering health, relationships, beauty and fashion, mind and body.

 
Advertisement
 
 
Essential Baby and Essential Kids is the place to find parenting information and parenting support relating to conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids, maternity, family budgeting, family travel, nutrition and wellbeing, family entertainment, kids entertainment, tips for the family home, child-friendly recipes and parenting. Try our pregnancy due date calculator to determine your due date, or our ovulation calculator to predict ovulation and your fertile period. Our pregnancy week by week guide shows your baby's stages of development. Access our very active mum's discussion groups in the Essential Baby forums or the Essential Kids forums to talk to mums about conception, pregnancy, birth, babies, toddlers, kids and parenting lifestyle. Essential Baby also offers a baby names database of more than 22,000 baby names, popular baby names, boys' names, girls' names and baby names advice in our baby names forum. Essential Kids features a range of free printable worksheets for kids from preschool years through to primary school years. For the latest baby clothes, maternity clothes, maternity accessories, toddler products, kids toys and kids clothing, breastfeeding and other parenting resources, check out Essential Baby and Essential Kids.