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If your child has been repetitively bullied, you know the torrent of emotions it can bring up: anxiety, outrage, sadness, and, more than anything, helplessness. 

Feeling helpless, however, does not mean you are completely powerless. As a parent, your role is pivotal in navigating these troubling situations, providing support, and advocating for your child’s safety, well-being, and self-worth long term.

The challenge often lies in identifying the most effective steps to take, which range from communicating with your child to engaging with their school and beyond. 

If you feel, or know, that your child is being bullied, start with these steps.

Listen To and Validate Your Child

Begin by prioritizing empathy–listen attentively to your child’s recounting of their experiences and feelings, making sure not to interrupt. It’s essential to acknowledge their emotions genuinely and assure them that bullying is not a result of their actions.

As you do this, work to foster an environment of open communication. Encourage your child to speak with you about bullying whenever they feel the need, and when they do share, commend their courage in doing so. This approach not only validates their feelings but also reinforces that they have your support and a safe space.

Watch for Signs of Bullying

Some children, no matter what the environment you provide at home, have difficulty expressing and sharing challenging events and the emotions involved. If this is your child, you will first want to watch for some signs of potential bullying:

  • Change in appetite
  • Having trouble sleeping
  • Physical complaints such as stomach pain or headaches
  • Removing themselves from parts of their routine, such as wanting to skip a class or stay in for recess
  • Changes in behavior, such as becoming more withdrawn or lashing out
  • Declining interest in things they were once passionate about

If you do notice some of these behaviors, bullying could be the potential culprit.

Document Everything

Once you have discovered the bullying, maintaining detailed records is a crucial step in addressing it. Keep a log that includes dates, times, locations, and detailed description of any incident you are aware of. Save voicemails, if there are any. If there are any physical injuries or damage to property, take photographs. 

If it is cyberbullying, take screenshots and save any texts, emails, or digital communication. This documentation is vital as it provides a clear, timestamped record of the bullying behavior.

Report to Your Child’s School

As you work to gather evidence, it is important to engage with your child’s school directly. Schedule a meeting with your child’s teachers and/or principal to discuss the situation in greater detail. When you attend the meeting, bring any documentation you’ve compiled to provide a concrete basis for the discussion. This will help the school to understand the severity and frequency of the incidents.

After this meeting, it will become your responsibility to maintain regular contact with the school to stay informed about actions they are taking. Continue to tell them about any new incidents, ensuring they are up-to-date and responding accordingly.

Facing bullying requires a concerted effort from parents, educators, and the community. By taking decisive actions and providing a supportive environment, you can help to create more secure circumstances for your child. Remember, bullying is not a rite of passage–it’s a serious issue that needs attention and action to resolve.

If your child has experienced bullying and you are looking for a school that will offer them a safe space that nurtures their authentic self, reach out to West Hills Academy here.


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