How to Understand Your Child is Being Bullied at School and How to Support Him

How to Understand Your Child is Being Bullied at School – If a student regularly looks for reasons not to go to classes and answers the parents’ questions that everything is fine, it is likely that he has experienced bullying.

Child is Being Bullied at School
Image by Mikhail Nilov on Pexels

What is bullying?

Bullying is an aggression on the part of one or more children against a child who cannot protect himself. This behaviour takes many forms: for example, a child can spread rumours, call him names, or push and beat him.

Bullying occurs in everyday life or spreads to the Internet: threats and insults in instant messengers and social networks are called cyberbullying.

Typically, the victim of bullying is abused against himself on his own. Therefore, it is important to pay attention to the physical and emotional state of the child and note the signs that indicate bullying.

How to recognize if your child is being bullied

1. He comes home from school with bruises and damaged things.

Sometimes bullying is expressed in physical actions: hits, kicks, and pushes, scratches. At the same time, the child may not explain to parents how traces of fights appeared or come up with implausible stories. If a student has always been neat and suddenly began to come home with torn or dirty things, you should also be wary.

Bullying can also be indicated by the child’s equipment breaking down and clothes and personal belongings disappearing. Sometimes this situation has a rational explanation – for example, someone distracted the student, so he forgot the textbook in the office. But if things disappear systematically, perhaps someone takes them away on purpose.

What should parents do?

If the child comes frightened and with bruises, you need to calm him down and, if necessary, seek medical help. Then you should try to find out the causes of the conflict. Children are not always willing to talk because they may feel shame and guilt. Let your child know that you are on his side and always ready to support him.

Talk to the teacher and find out why the conflict happened. When children are at school, the institution’s employees care for their lives and health. If a child is injured, you will request an internal investigation and try to recover treatment costs through the courts. The offender over 14 years of age is himself responsible for the harm caused to him.

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In case of missing things, the school, when they were deposited in the cloakroom. And for example, the administration is not responsible for the safety of the child’s phone. If you think your device has been stolen, you can contact the police.

2. Your child does not want to go to classes

This happens to all children from time to time – no one cancelled the desire to skip the control. But if a child begins to miss classes systematically and refuses to discuss his relationship with teachers and classmates, this may indicate that he is uncomfortable at school.

You need to pay attention to a sharp change in hobbies. For example, a child used to go to robotics or chess with pleasure, but now he is looking for an excuse to stay at home. It is possible that his interests have simply changed. But sometimes, the reason for this behaviour is a conflict with one of the children.

What should parents do?

Try to find out from the child what happened. Avoid phrases like “You have to tell me everything.” Instead, open-ended questions are better, such as: “What happened?”, “What problem are you facing?” You need to clarify to the child that his opinion is important to you.

If the student is reluctant to answer questions, you can discuss someone’s story to lead him to a heart-to-heart conversation. Use characters from books and films. It is important to explain to the student that bullying can manifest itself in different ways.

Still, in any case, you should not tolerate bullying or pretend that nothing is happening. This will make it easier for your child to recognize bullying and tell their parents about it.

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3. His behaviour has changed dramatically

Bullying is not always expressed in abrasions and bruises – children may be limited to offensive words. But this does not mean that bullying will not affect the child’s physical condition.

For example, he has a head or sleep worsens. Sometimes bullying leads to depression and anxiety, outbursts of aggression, and anger. At times, a student’s performance may also suffer.

What should parents do?

It is not worth ignoring the child’s problems and saying that he has not yet encountered real difficulties. If it seems to you that the child is behaving incorrectly, let’s evaluate his act but not his personality.

For example, when a student gets bad grades because of bullying, instead of scolding him in the spirit of “There is a fail in our family!”, start the conversation like this: “I’m sorry that you got a deuce. What do you think is the reason?”

If you find out about bullying and want to go to school to have a serious talk with children, but the child is categorically against it, listen to his opinion. Look with him for options on how to proceed. In some cases, you may need to change schools.

4. He gets stressed after online chatting

Insults and threats on the Internet are no less than physical bullying. With traditional bullying, the child knows the aggressor by sight and can avoid it – for example, go home from school. Cyberbullying is often anonymous, and the stalker poisons the victim constantly, almost without being distracted from the main affairs.

Just like bullying in real life, online bullying can cause a child to be restless, have poor academic performance, and have poor health. But there are also specific features. For example, you may notice that the child after sitting on social networks.

Sometimes a student becomes extremely secretive when it comes to online communication. He spends all his free time reading posts and comments but does not discuss them with his parents.

What should parents do?

Try to figure out what’s going on. Ideally, you need to explain to the child in advance what content can be shared. This is to avoid situations where the cause of bullying was, for example, an unpleasant video.

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Tell your child that you should add as friends only those whom he knows personally, and you don’t need to respond to rude messages – it’s better to send a rude interlocutor to the blacklist. You can complain about insults to technical support – then the platform will block the account from which they were written.

Explain to the student that he does not need to deal with cyberbullying on his own – he can immediately tell you about the problems that have arisen.

Save correspondence, photos, and other important information. If you know the offender of the child, with the evidence collected, you can apply in writing to the school or the commission on minors.

5. Your child constantly begs for money

He demands more pocket money than usual but doesn’t explain what he’s going to buy. Or often comes home from school hungry, although he regularly receives money for food. And sometimes, you just find out about the loss of funds from the wallet. It is possible that money is being extorted from the child.

He can give sweets to other children or pay to go to the cinema in the hope that he will be accepted into the company.

What should parents do?

Suppose you find that your child is stealing, especially in front of strangers. Explain why you can’t take someone else’s. For example, invite him to imagine how a person feels when their money is stolen. It is important to find out the reason for the theft – behind it is an attempt to attract the attention of parents or a desire to improve relationships with peers.

To protect the child from theft of money on the Internet, in no case should you transfer bank card data to outsiders.

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