Bullying is an aggressive behavior where one person or group coerces another person or a group by using physical strength or by forcing them by other means to do something they don't. It can also be an act where a person is left out on purpose or when someone is verbally abused or teased.
As adults most of us understand that bullying is an act violence. We understand that there are some boundaries that are never to be crossed. Adults thus believe in debating and confronting their feelings by talking.
Kids on the other hand do not understand that there are results to certain acts which can be problematic for all. In school and in groups it is sad but very normal to see a kid getting bullied. This act of bullying may not just be physical violence and can be mental torture as well.
Why is it Important to talk about Bullying?
In a study that was conducted, it was noted that 49 per cent of students in class 4-12 were bullied by other students once during the past month. Other studies have found a link between bullying and risk of mental health problems like anxiety and depression, and an increased risk for suicide.
In a world where we are trying time and again to spread peace and harmony, the most fragile beings the children, are being targeted by none other their own peers. Bullying needs to stop and students and children need to understand that there is no pride in inflicting any sort of violence and abuse on each other.
If we want a safer world for our kids, the first step that we need to take is spread awareness about bullying. If a child gets off without any understanding of how much pain and hurt he or she caused to another child, then there are more chances of him/her growing up to become a bigot who thinks it's his/her right to violate others.
What can Parents do to stop Bullying?
Parents need to understand and accept the fact that bullying is something that exists. Parents tend to avoid certain behavior of kids as attention seeking and tantrums, but sometimes there is more than just that. You need to know that bullying mainly exists in there forms:
- Physical violence
- Verbal Abuse or teasing
- Social- where a child is left out on purpose, spreading of rumors etc.
Bullying as an act can exist through the Internet as well.
The parents need to look for signs in their child. Whether they are being unusually quiet or if they tell you that they don't want to go to specific place or tell you that certain events are happening.
Change your Perspective
As an adult we think about world differently. The child in us gets shadowed by the responsible adult in us. Thus when our kids try to tell us things we tend to ignore them. We don't do this on purpose, rather we just tend to let somethings go off without thinking much about it.
But when we deal with kids, we need to look from their perspective. Something that may sound very trivial to you may be very serious in their heads. Try understanding what they feel and empathize with them.
Also Read: How to be your child's best friend?
Educate the kids about Bullying
Spreading awareness about bullying is very important, and something that's much more important is to talk about it with the kids. Your kid might be the one who is getting, bullied, or the one who is bullying or the one who is just standing by or walking by when someone else is getting bullied.
Any way if the child knows what is happening is wrong, and knows that they can talk about it with adults the experience will become much easier to deal with. Kids should be told not to hurt other kids and that if they see or experience bullying, they must report to a parent or teacher.
If you come across an experience of your child or someone's child being bullied, don't just run to the parent of the bully and start shouting at them. They might have no clue at all. Understand that children have a microcosm, their own little universe in school. Your actions may cause damage to the kid, with the bullying being increased.
Instead approach the parents calmly and talk to them like a mature person. Tell them to not ignore it and that your child has suffered. Make them understand the gravity of the situation. If they continue to ignore the talks, and the bullying continues, approach the school authorities.
Support your Child
One might question that should a parent just be calm and keep approaching other parents and teachers whilst the child continues to suffer? No. The parent needs to talk to the child and make him or her understand why people bully.
Tell them that people try to dominate others because they themselves feel powerless. Be the support that your child needs and be with them through thick and thin. Listen to them, every time they have something to say and don't ignore them.
Students need concentration and focus in their school and college years. Such instances might hinder their desire to study and perform academically.
Even though there are many campaigns that focus on anti-bullying, we come across instances where children break under the force of bullying. It affects the mental and psychological aspect of the kid's development. Incidents of ragging and hazing are all extensions of bullying and should not be entertained under any circumstances.
As parents it is your responsibility to make sure your child grows up in a world where there is less violence and more happiness. So take the first step and talk to your kid about bullying!