What Defines Bullying and How to Deal With It

Dealing with Bullying Bullying is not necessarily a normal part
of growing up and must be taken seriously. Bullying affects a child’s academic performance,
emotional health, and physical well-being, and the adverse effects could extend into
adulthood. At its most extreme, bullying can result in suicide and devastating acts of
revenge like school shootings. Bullying is intentional torment that can be
verbal (name-calling or threats, for example, either spoken or written), physical (harm
to a person’s body or possessions), or “psychosocial” (such as damaging someone’s reputation or
relationship). “Cyberbullying” via the internet and mobile technology has raised
the stakes because it operates around the clock and at an accelerated pace, has no physical
boundaries, and can be done anonymously. The surest way to know your child is being
bullied is if he or she tells you. But many children are afraid to open up about it. In
general, changes in your child’s moods, behaviors, routines, friendships and or computer
and mobile technology use will offer the best indication of some sort of problem. There’s no one-size-fits-all approach to
helping a child who’s being bullied. The most appropriate or effective course of action
will depend on multiple variables such as the ages of the children involved, where the
bullying occurs, and the duration and severity of the bullying. Listen attentively and refrain from acting
rashly or in a way that disregards your child’s wants, needs and fears. Work with your child
to find solutions, get help from your child’s school or other authority, and seek professional
mental health counseling, if necessary. It’s important not just to your child’s present
well-being, but most likely to his or her future well-being, too. To learn more about Bullying, visit the Information
Center at carrierclinic.org