Thanks to TakePart for sponsoring today’s discussion.
With Charlie just finishing his first year of preschool and as the discussion begins to turn towards school, I must admit that my fears as a parent regarding bullying are definitely becoming more prominent in my mind. When I hear stories in the news and from friends about kids being bullied, about their kids being the bullies, and about the some time volatile environment that our kids face every day, it scares me to think about what might lie ahead for us and for our families.
In the day and age of the internet, bullying isn’t restricted to the playground. It can be found in school, at church, during extracurricular activities and on the internet. As Charlie begins to grow, I’m beginning to explore some effective ways to handle bullying and ensuring that he doesn’t become one!
1. Keep the Lines of Communication Open
As your kids grow, try your best to maintain open and honest conversation. The more they can trust you, the more likely they are to confide when they or someone else is being bullied.
2. Encourage them to be individuals.
From an early age, encourage them to be their own person without needing to be influenced by others or the world. This can be easier said than done, but also consider your own life. Do you seek acceptance from the world? If so, your child just might seek that same thing.
3. Be proactive.
If you hear of bullying or if your child is being bullied, tell the school or teacher. Have conferences about how to change these actions and move forward as a school and class. Do not quite fighting for better circumstances and don’t take no for an answer. Your child deserves it.
As parents of the future generations, we are responsible for the children we give to the world. Let’s work together to create a beautiful place where they and others can feel safe and loved. Take the TakePart pledge to stop bullying. Childhood bullying can have lifelong impact, leading to depression, anxiety, substance abuse and even suicide. But we have the power to prevent it, if we take action.