Bullying occurs when an individual or group deliberately and repeatedly misuses power, strength or influence to physically and/or psychologically harm a more vulnerable individual or group.
Types of Bullying:
- Physical-hitting, slapping, shoving, kicking, pinching, restraining, taking someone’s belongings, chocking, inappropriate touching, throwing food.
- Verbal-insults, put-downs, name-calling, repeated teasing, threats, intimidation, racial slurs, sexual comments, spreading false rumors, threatening or suggestive voicemails.
- Social-hurting a persons reputation or status, undermining relationships, spreading false rumors, joking to embarrass or humiliate, unkind mocking or mimicking, deliberately excluding or isolating someone from a group.
- Online-sending insults or threats via text message, instant message or email, spreading false rumors on social networking sites, posting negative or embarrassing photographs without consent, excluding someone from social network sites, tricking someone into revealing private information then forwarding it to others, creating websites to make fun of someone, sending cruel or untrue messages in someone else’s name, taking over someone’s social media profile or creating a new one.
Signs of bullying:
- Physical-scratches, bruises, or other injuries, damaged or missing books, electronics, clothing or other possessions, changes in eating habits.
- Emotional/Behavioral-changes in sleep patterns, difficulty sleeping or nightmares, mood swings, headaches, stomach aches, fear of going to school, unusual quietness or withdrawal, sudden stammering or stuttering, drastic change in appearance, self-destructive behavior, running away, thoughts or comments about suicide.
- School-related/Social-skipping class, school attendance drops, difficulty concentrating, easily distracted, insecure or frightened in class, sudden loss of friends, avoids social situations, wants to take a different route to school, wants to take a different form of transportation to school, lack of interest in school, grades drop.
If you think your child is being bullied, you should provide opportunities for your child to talk openly and honestly with you. Try to assure your child that the bullying is not his/her fault. Begin a dialogue with your child by asking him/her what they think should be done to stop the bullying. Together, seek help from the child’s teacher or school administrator and continue to follow up until the problem is resolved. Do not attempt to contact the bully’s parents. If your child is reluctant to attend school or shows signs of withdrawal, seek professional assistance. K & K Counseling can assist you and your child with working through issues with bullying.
The USAA Educational Foundation. www.usaaedfoundation.org.