March 12, 2020
Bullying is a huge problem in our society. It’s common, it’s frequent, and it has horrible outcomes such as depression, anxiety, stress, and other negative impacts. However, there is hope. With increased awareness, we can better understand, be more aware, and put a stop to bullying.
There are four types of bullying:
- Physical bullying
- Social bullying
- Verbal bullying
- Cyber bullying
No matter how innocent a certain type of bullying may seem, each one needs to be taken seriously and dealt with. In the following paragraphs, we want to discuss how you can prepare and confront bullying, should it take place in your child’s life.
Be Active in Your Child’s Life
Staying curious and asking questions can keep you in the loop and can let your child know you care. By knowing what your child is doing, where your child is going, and who your child is hanging out with, you can pick up signs more easily when something wrong is happening.
Striving to create a good relationship and continually strengthening it with your child(ren) is vital. By doing so, your child can feel more trust and safety to come to you when they need help!
Let Them Find Their Independence
There’s a way to be active in your child’s life while still giving them their space. Speak to your child first about the situation they’re in and give them the tools necessary to try and deal with the situation on their own.
If a child can learn to resolve issues on their own with the right tools and techniques, their confidence and problem-solving skills can rise. Knowing that your child is getting bullied and letting them try and deal with it on their own can be scary and can make you feel like you’re not doing enough. This is not true. Letting them find their independence to deal with the situation is only one step and can let your child know you trust them to handle things. It can also help them grow and work through their own issues.
To help you and your child build confidence about the situation, role play appropriate confrontation. Practice what to say to the bully and what to say to the teacher, so your child knows how to respond should they be bullied again.
Keep Open Communication
Strive to provide a safe space for your child where they can feel free to talk to you about anything. You don’t have to be upfront and push them to answer all your questions. Simply let them know that they can come to you and talk to you. Love them, hug them, and spend time with them.
When they do feel the need to talk, let your child know you are happy they came to you for help and that together you will resolve the issue. Listen carefully and attentively. This is their time to get anything or everything off their chest, and it’s your time to let your child know that they have your complete attention.
After they have told you how they’re feeling, make sure to think calmly and clearly. Have an open dialogue and talk to them about ways they can try and deal with the situation or if you’ve already done this step and the situation is not getting better, talk to your child and create the steps you both would like to take next.
Document the Instances
If your child feels comfortable enough to tell you when the bullying is taking place, document it. If you simply have a feeling that something is taking place, document it. Be as detailed as you would like to be.
Some of the things you could document if you suspect your child is getting bullied but they haven’t come out and told you are:
- The date
- The clothes your child was wearing and how they look
- Their mood or attitude
- The place they just came from
- The people they were with
- Pictures of physical evidence
If your child has sought your help, some important things to document are:
- The date
- The name of the bully(s)
- The place where the bullying is taking place
- The words the bully(s) say
- The kids that are around
- Photos of physical evidence
Ask the Teacher and Staff for Help
After each incident, please call or email your child’s teacher. They can keep an eye out for bullying behavior and help keep your child safe. If the bullying hasn’t gotten better and your child’s teacher has yet to be informed, we encourage you to seek their help. The truth is many teachers don’t even know that bullying is happening because bullies tend to not do it in front of a teacher.
Another thing you can do is set up an appointment with your child’s teacher or school counselor. Together, you can talk about the situation. Your child can also know that you have their back by helping the school staff be more aware of what’s going on. Once the staff has the information you provided, they can keep an eye out and hopefully step in when necessary.
Never stop fighting for your child! Stay in contact and be persistent with the teacher to help you. If the bullying continues, seek the help of someone higher up such as the principal or superintendent. The more persistent you are, the more likely you are going to be able to help your child. At Providence Hall, however, we do not tolerate bullying and are dedicated to the safety of every student. You can trust that we will work with everyone involved to resolve the situation and put a halt to any sign of bullying.
There might be a time when you wish to speak to the bully’s parent(s). This can be a tricky situation as both parents may be super protective of their child. Before you confront the parents of your child’s bully, we encourage you to talk to your teacher’s child and ask that they talk to the other parent. Our Providence Hall staff will be here for you and your child every step of the way. Our teachers are dedicated to your child’s safety and will discuss the matter with the other parent.
Build Your Child’s Confidence
To us, this is the most important thing you can do for your child—build their confidence. Like previously mentioned, bullying can have serious effects emotionally, psychologically, and physically. As their parent, always let them know that they are loved by you and other people. Encourage them to spend time with friends and those who have a positive influence. Help them find a safe place other than your home so that they can create other meaningful relationships that they can trust. You can also get them involved in confidence-building activities like recreational sports, martial arts, and other things that they may be interested in.
Always stay positive. Encourage them to share the good things that are happening or the things that made them happy during the day. The more positive and confident they are, the more they can overcome the negative things happening to them and around them!
Want to Transfer Your Child to a Different School?
At Providence Hall, we strive to create a learning environment full of positivity. Under no circumstance is bullying tolerated, and you can trust that we’ll do everything in our power to keep your child safe. If your child is struggling with bullying and you’re considering transferring schools, we hope you’ll consider Providence Hall. Give us a call at 801-727-8260 to talk with our staff about how to get your child enrolled in our charter school.