Hi everyone. This week, I want to talk about bullies. It always breaks my heart when I hear that a child is being bullied at school. If your child doesn’t want to go to school or if they’re always in a bad mood when they get home, they may be dealing with a bully at school.
Hi, my name is Teacher Kean from Teaching Worthy. I’m a licensed headmaster with the Ministry of Education and a certified HRDF trainer. My job is to help parents become better parents.
So your child has told you that he is being bullied at school. What should you do about it? Well, I can certainly tell you what you SHOULDN’T do:
DON’T OVERREACT AND STORM THE SCHOOL
First, do not get upset and angry because your child was bullied. Remember that our kids learn from example. So, if you get emotional and overreact when your kid tells you about a bully, they learn to deal with future problems emotionally as well. Above all, please, please don’t rush to the school and confront the teacher or even the bully’s parents. We’re not supposed to fight our kids’ battles for them.
Remain calm and your kids will have the confidence to tell you about their problems in the future.
DON’T TELL YOUR KIDS TO IGNORE THE BULLY OR TO LEARN TO BE THEIR FRIEND
Please do not tell your kids to ignore the bully. Most behavioural therapists agree that a bully is not going to go away just because you ignore him.
It’s quite simple, really. If you encounter a wild dog, if you wave your hands and make a lot of noise, the dog will probably be scared off. If you remain still or worse, run away, what do you want the dog to think? I hope for your sake that you’re an excellent runner. It’s the same with bullies.
Worst of all, please do not ask your kid to “bribe” the bully or to “learn to be their friend”. This is because your kid would be reinforcing the bully’s bad behaviour. The bully will think: “Hey, If I pick on this kid, I’ll be rewarded. This kid is so stupid that he even wants to be my friend.”
Now let’s take a look at what you SHOULD do:
TALK TO YOUR CHILD AND ASK QUESTIONS CAREFULLY
First, sit down with your child to have a conversation. Listen closely and without judgement. After he has told his story, you should confirm the following:
Sometimes, your child will already have an idea on how to solve the bullying. I’m gonna be honest though. Most of the time, the ideas I’ve heard from my own children and my students revolve around counter-pranking the bully or revenge. This is not a smart idea. So, what should we do instead?
GUIDE YOUR CHILD TO DEAL WITH THE SITUATION CORRECTLY
If your child has only been bullied ONCE, in the vast majority of cases, the bully didn’t even know that he had hurt someone. In this situation, it’s better to tell your child to assume the best of other people and to observe for future bullying.
However, if your child has already been bullied repeatedly, then he should TELL the bully to stop. Most behavioural therapists agree that to solve a harassment or bullying situation, your kid will have to TALK with the bully.
Your kid should honestly tell the bully that the bullying is not funny and that he doesn’t enjoy it. Again, in the majority of cases, this is enough to stop most people from further bullying.
I’m going to emphasise this next part. EVERY TIME the bully harasses your kid, your kid should talk frankly to the bully and threaten to tell a teacher. Some people cannot be negotiated with unless you have a hammer. So, your kid’s hammer is the teacher. Your child can request the teacher to monitor the bully for future cases. Research has shown that simple monitoring is sufficient to stop a bully.
However, some bullies will respond with anger and try to blame your kid for their negative behaviour. Some bullies will also deny that they are bullying your kid. In this situation, don’t argue with the bully. Your kid is sure to lose in an emotional argument with a psychopath. In this situation, just tell the teacher.
TEACH YOUR CHILD TO BE SOMEONE WHO WON’T BE TARGETED
Have you ever noticed that happy children are rarely bullied? It’s the same in the workplace isn’t it. People who have high self esteem and love themselves are rarely picked on in the workplace. It’s because bullies will not get satisfaction from people who are confident and strong.
That’s why it’s super important for us to teach our children how to love themselves. In fact, our kids may even be able to influence the bullies to become happier people and to stop the bullying. Nonetheless, I must emphasise again that it’s not our job to change other people. We can only change ourselves.
I hope this video has helped you. As I’ve discussed, most scientists agree that a lot of bullying can be resolved if you have an honest talk with the bully. If you need more practical steps or if you require specific advice, please do not hesitate to contact us at www.teachingworthy.com. Thank you, and please remember to share these lessons which are worth sharing.