What to do if your child is “the bully”.

Parents dread to hear about their own child being bullied or when their own child is being accused of bullying

Bullying is a huge thing now in schools and even at home due to the rise in mobile phone use that has led to the new evolution of bullying via text messages (cyber bullying).
It is a thing that parents dread to hear about whether it is their own child being bullied or when their own child is being accused of bullying. There is a lot in the media about how to help your child if they are being bullied but little about the person doing the bullying. The kid demonstrating bullying behaviour needs help too and with this article we provide some support and tips on how to help your child and ways to move forward post bullying.
When you first hear about your child being accused of bullying you may feel compelled to deny it and want to ignore it though avoiding the issue will not make it go away. It may be the school that contacts you or a very irate parent of the victim and things can get very heated and in this situation it is important to keep a cool head.
Firstly you need to talk to your child and find out what is going on, in some cases this will be in the school with the Headmaster and people will want answers though your child may be resilient to provide them. Is it the case that they were involved in a ring of people who were bullying? Or was it a lone exercise? Is there evidence of what they did apart from the victims? In which case the school or parents of the victim will show you and your child, leaving them unable to deny it.
Maybe your child will confess and be remorseful of their behaviour but it still doesn’t clear up the reasoning behind it and to be sure it doesn’t happen again you need to clear up a few things.
Was your child trying to show off? Or does your child simply dislike the victim and picked on him/her for that reason? Or is it possible that it was just a random act of callousness and there is no real reasoning behind it?
When talking together with your child be sure to explain to them the implications of their actions, and how it has ultimately affected their classmate. Can your child feel empathy for the victim and what would they think if they were in their shoes? Remember that the behaviour is despicable but your child is not beyond repair and can move on from this once they have taken responsibility for their actions.
Ask yourself is there anything going on in your child’s life that led to this? Are there any problems at home? Is there anything going on in your kiddies life that would have caused him to act out? As parents being a good role model can be a huge advantage to any child, by teaching them empathy and kindness.
Going forward your child needs to apologise but not because they are forced but because they feel it is the right thing to do. Keep in contact with the victim’s parents and swap phone numbers and tell them to let you know if there is anything untoward happening in the future. Communicate with the school regularly and accept any disciplinary action they choose acceptable for your kid and once the punishment is over try to move on in a positive way.
Remember that bullying is a horrible thing to do but it doesn’t mean the bully is bad and they can redeem themselves and move past it. Together you can all work together to help your youngster and hopefully it will be the last you hear of it though you may never forget it.
Written by Emma, Irish mummy blogger and staff writer at www.familyfriendlyhq.ie 
Check out her own blog at emmasmadjotters.com

Emma Hayes

Emma Hayes is a busy mum to two girls aged 17 and 11 and is married to her childhood sweetheart.

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