Is Your Child Being Bullied Or Bullying Others?

Bullying can be a parent’s worst nightmare. Dads and moms fear more for their child being involved in bullying than kidnapping, terrorism, accidents, and suicide, according to this survey.

Bullying can take several forms. It can be physical, verbal, emotional or sexual. Children can even be bullied because of their race. And with the advent of technology, bullying is no longer limited to the real world but can also happen in cyberspace.

As parents, we want to shield and protect our children from all the bad things in this world. But when they step out of our house, we can only do so much. In the case of bullying, how do you find out if your child is being bullied or determine if he/she is being a bully?

Here are the signs to watch out for.

Your Child May Be A Bully Victim When:

According to the government information portal stopbullying.gov and other sources, the following are signs that your child could be bullied:

Physical and physiological signs

  • Unexplainable injuries like cuts, bruises, and scratches.
  • Lost or destroyed clothing, books, electronics, or jewelry.
  • Frequent headaches or stomach aches, feeling sick or faking illness.
  • Weight loss.

Change in patterns

  • Changes in eating habits, like suddenly skipping meals, or binge eating, or loss of appetite.
  • Difficulty sleeping or frequent nightmares.
  • Declining grades and loss of interest in schoolwork.
  • Not wanting to go or seemingly afraid to go school. They may also have excuses why they can’t go to school or avoid the usual routes to school.
  • Not wanting to take part in organized activities with peers or avoidance of other social activities and situations.
  • Spends more time alone in their room or at home.
  • Sudden loss of friends or change in friends.
  • Change in clothing, hair or makeup.

Emotional and psychological signs

  • Feelings of helplessness or decreased self-esteem.
  • Appears sad, moody, excessively tired, teary or depressed once at home from school.
  • Self-destructive behaviors such as running away from home, harming themselves, or talking about suicide.

Your Child May Be A Bully When:

On the other hand, your child may be bullying others when you spot the following signs:

Physical and physiological signs

  • They get into physical or verbal fights.
  • They have friends who bully other kids.
  • They have unexplainable extra money or new things.

Change in patterns

  • They have become more aggressive towards you, other kids, teachers, and other adults.
  • They’ve been given detention or sent to the principal’s office frequently.
  • They have been frequently testing limits and boundaries and have increasingly broken rules.

Emotional and psychological signs

  • They blame others for their problems.
  • They don’t accept responsibility for their actions.
  • They are competitive and worry about their reputation or popularity.
  • They view violence positively.
  • They have a need to control situations and/or dominate others.
  • They are hot-tempered, impulsive and easily frustrated.
  • They display self-centeredness or narcissistic behavior.
  • They lack empathy for others, be they people or animals.

Observe your child and look at the signs. Are they possibly being bullied by others? Are they possibly bullying others?

For more information, check out Bully, an award-winning, socially important documentary. It illustrates all the who, why, when, and how questions regarding bullying, and shows you how you could help save your child or another child’s life. “Kids will be kids, __ will be __” excuses are not acceptable. The internet makes victims feel it’s almost impossible to get away from their attackers. Over 13 million kids will be bullied this year alone, making it the most prominent violence experienced by youths in the nation. It needs to change.

 


Has your child been bullied or bullied others? Do you have suggestions on what a parent should do? Tell us in the comments below or share this article and start a discussion over at our Facebook page.


Additional Images: Pimkie / Flickr

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Juvy Garcia
Juvy Garcia
Juvy is a freelance proofreader, copy editor and writer. A nice little nook with a good book would be ideal. But concocting plans for her next drawing or DIY project will suffice while she's still busy babysitting two daughters. Follow her on Twitter or connect with her on Google+.