Believe it or not, it happens— bullies on preschool and bullies as young as 4 years old! Really I don’t know how it happened but it’s a fact and many parents (myself included) feel frustrated because we feel like our hands are tied and don’t know how to handle it. This post is brought about by what has happened to Peaches a few days before the school year ended. I only knew about it because Peaches told me about this girl picking on her at school. Most of your would think, “Oh it’s nothing, it’s child’s play”. But when you’re a Mom and you hear your child complain about a girl who keeps telling her that her shoes is ugly, her hair is ugly and dirty, her dress is not nice, she’s small and other negative things that your daughter starts questioning if it’s true is something you don’t pass as child’s play. With a little probing, Peaches said that the little girl keeps on messing her hair by pulling her pig tails or ruining her braids but (thank God!) no pulling or pushing (but then again how sure am I).
When I asked Peaches if she told her teachers about it and what their reactions, she said her teachers made the girl sit on the naughty chair sometimes. The bully tried to make the other classmates pick on Peaches too and not include her on group games but thankfully, Peaches has more friends than the bully and she was never left out.
And then I heard about a friend’s nephew who got bullied from preschool and the teachers didn’t mind them or paid enough attention that the bullying went further until my friend’s nephew couldn’t take it and just punched the bully’s face because he felt he needed to protect himself. Ending? My friend’s nephew was asked to leave school because of the punching. IF you ask me, the bully asked for it. He provoked the poor boy and got what he deserved. Can you see the problem here? If only the teachers took my friend’s nephew’s call for help seriously this would have never happened. It should have been the teachers who were asked to leave not the poor boy.
And let’s not get into children committing suicide because of bullying.
Bullying is a serious matter that needs to be dealt with. Teachers should be trained and taught how to handle bullies and children that are bullied. Often times, teachers think they have BETTER THINGS TO DO than meddle with child’s fight but the fact is, IT’S NOT CHILD’S PLAY NOR CHILD’S FIGHT.
For the record, bullying does not happen on schools alone. It happens everywhere- playgrounds, home, subdivision, compounds and so on. Parents and caretakers should be vigilant because WHAT BULLYING DOES TO YOUR CHILD IS SERIOUS.
So what are the tell-tale signs your child is being bullied?
1. When a child is bullied, he or she may refuse to go to school and wouldn’t say why.
2. In the same way, the child refuses to go out of the house or room.
3. The child starts to ask negative questions about herself
4. The kid feels sick with our without symptoms
5. The kid couldn’t concentrate well on his lessons because he’s too stressed to think about school
6. Then there are more obvious signs such as the child comes home with torn books, notebooks, dirty uniform, etc
7. Nightmares may occur
8. The child may lose some of his belongings especially money because he will try to bribe or pay the bully
9. May become aggressive and unreasonable at home or with siblings
10. Low self esteem
I’m sure you can add more on this list but these are just the top 10 signs that come to mind.
S0 what should parents do when their child is being bullied? And worst if the school downplays bullying?
1. Offer comfort and make your child understand that it is never his or her fault that he or she is being bullied.
2. Call out the attention of the school teacher or principal. They spend more time with your kids each day, they should be able to protect him especially if the well being of your child is at stake. Ask about rules on bullying and what they do with it. Are they even aware that bullying happens when the teachers are not around like at locker rooms, cafeteria, corridor, and yes, online?
I can’t stress it even more that studies show bullying is often missed at school 96% of the time because school personnel take it as KIDS WILL BE KIDS mentality.
3. Try not to show you’re outraged of the bullying because this may make your child not want to tell that he’s bullied. Instead, show that you support him and that you will help him make it better.
4. Document the times, days that your child was bullied to show evidence.
5. Be level headed but be strong in your commitment to stop the bullying. Involve other parents and tell your son’s story. Chances are there are other bullied kids from the same school.
6. When school personnel went deaf on your child’s concerns, talk to the child’s parents. Discuss about the matter and explain why you are taking it seriously. This could be hard especially if the parents are proud that their child is “tough”.
Or take my friend’s advise….
Talk to the bully and stare hard. Make him understand that you know that your child is being bullied without actually saying it. Make him back off with your knowing stares and hard facial expression. Name drop the parents as well to let the child know you can talk to his parents about the bullying.
I have been teaching my daughter how to protect herself from bullies and aggression without resorting to one. She’s very sweet and friendly that she refuses to fight back to protect herself so the other kids think she’s weak. But don’t worry we’re working on it.
Is it time to enroll her on a Karate class instead of Ballet? No?
How about Taekwondo? lol.
Anyway, I hope you learned something from my post.
Say no to bullying! And make school teachers listen!