Some children are easier targets than others for being bullied at school. When other children intentionally cause physical or emotional harm to your child or any other student, that’s bullying. If your child is being hit or beaten, verbally abused, intimidated, sexually encroached upon, hazed, cyberbullied, or the victim of racist bullying, you will need to step in to get them the help they need.
However, many children are embarrassed to report it for fear of repercussions so it’s up to us as parents to be vigilant. You may notice a change in your child’s behavior recently. Before jumping the gun, take a good look at the signs of bullying and see if this might be the problem your child is having.
Damaged clothing or belongings
When your child arrives home from school, are his clothes frequently ripped? Or perhaps his books, bag or other personal belongings are damaged? If it happens once and then never again, it’s likely it was just a mishap. However if this is a regular occurrence, something is going on.
Does your son or daughter try to hide bruises, cuts, and scratches from you? When you find them out and they make up some ham-handed excuse about how they got them, keep an eye out.
Doesn’t have many friends
Some children recognize it’s quality over quantity for friendships, but for others they may have a few friends but never spend time with them. They may also have no friends and feel safer hiding in their room, away from the world.
Is afraid to go to school
If your child suddenly doesn’t want to go to school, begs you to drive him or pick him up from school or avoids things at school he never had a problem with, something has changed and it’s time to get to the bottom of it.
Fakes sick in class and at home
If your child suddenly begins to claim they’re sick all the time or gets out of class often to go to the school nurse, it’s a likely sign they are avoiding something upsetting at school.
Grades change suddenly
If your child was always doing well in school and suddenly grades are suffering, pay close attention. A bully or group of bullies could be at the root of this behavior change.
Attitude has changed drastically
If your usually sunny child has become sullen, moody, depressed and anxious, particularly when she arrives home from school, something at school is causing her to feel this way.
If you think your child’s behavior change is a result of being bullied, talk to them about it. They might not be so forthcoming though. Remember what it was like to be in school. It’s always so embarrassing when your parents get involved, however doing so discretely will help you both. Be sure you reach out to the school too and get to the bottom of it as quickly as possible. Every child deserves the opportunity to study in an environment that allows them to feel safe and thrive.