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Posts Tagged ‘bullies’

Starting School Without Being Afraid Of Bullies

Tuesday, August 7th, 2012

Starting School Without Being Afraid Of Bullies

Teaching children proper protocol for handling school bullies is a complex issue today. Increasingly, parents find themselves trying to protect their children from bullying personalities and worry about their child’s safety. Ultimately, it is children who must cope with the difficulties of exposure to unacceptable bully behavior. Parents need to reduce their child’s fears before they can help them avoid problems with bullies.

There are several points to consider so children can start school without fear of bullies:
1. Address children’s’ fears
2. Provide safety guidelines
3. Clarify Children’s’ Options
4. Teach Bully Awareness

1. Address Children’s’ Fears
The most important aspect of providing a child with quality of life is to help them live with less fear. Discuss their fears openly and with understanding.

2. Provide Safety Guidelines
Children need to know when they are in danger. Most important is their need to know how to protect themselves from bullies.

3. Clarify Children’s’ Options
When they are exposed to a bully, children need to think first about their options. Help your child to know the options available to them to protect themselves and to insure their safety.

4. Teach Bully Awareness
Children need to be sensitized to aggressive behavior that goes beyond the bounds of normal. They need to be taught to identify what constitutes bullying.

Reducing the sting of the fear of bullies helps children recognize their own strengths. Help children to build a healthy sense of self-confidence and self-identity. They do this by reinforcing their sense of community and affability with others in their social networks. Children who build strong bonds of friendship are less likely to be targets of bullies. The axiom, “There is safety in numbers,” should be pointed out to children so they understand the importance of their personal friendships as a unifying part of their lives.

Inevitably, every child faces a bully sooner or later. Preparing a child for this possibility may prevent a serious situation. Expose them to books and venues that reinforce their preparation for a bullying episode. Less fearful, self-confident children who are fully oriented to their options may still recoil from a bully. With regular support and awareness, children will survive a bullying episode and know the proper methods to protect themselves.

It’s important to point out to children that a school bully is just a child like them. The menacing behavior of a bully is less dangerous when the bully realizes other children are prepared to isolate aggressive behavior and report their bullying. A bully may not express concern for his/her unacceptable behavior. When consequences for that behavior are consistent, bullying can be less of a problem.


About the Author:


This guest post is contributed by Debra Johnson, blogger and editor of full time nanny.

She welcomes your comments at her email Id: – jdebra84 @


Aggressive Behavior- When To Call In Psychologist, Counselor or Therapist

Monday, June 28th, 2010

“Welcome to our community of kind, thoughtful people who want respect for all”

What do you do when you have tried every parenting technique in the books?  What do you do when communication,

Angry teens may need intervention to solve aggressive behavior.

cooperation, tough love are not enough to turn a rotten attitude and disrespectful behavior in your child around?  When is the right time to stop trying to solve aggressive behavior on your own and call in a psychologist, counselor therapist?

Important to Know When To Ask For Professional Help

If you have consistently tried parenting techniques and set boundaries that are consistently broken, then perhaps it is time to ask for professional help.

If your child has an almost total lack of friends or associates, it may be cause for concern.  However, it may also be a matter of circumstances or personality.  When researching for a recent book on making friends, I found many children go through periods of loneliness or a specific social skill may not have been developed yet.

Red Flags of Behavior to Watch For

If your child has a pattern of manipulating others for favors without any effort to reciprocate, a lack of concern for the feelings, wishes and well-being of others, fighting, stealing, committing acts of vandalism, or setting fires you will want to seek outside help.

Many aggressive and bullying behaviors may occur in conjunction with other symptoms- drug or alcohol abuse or agitated depression.  A lack of feelings of remorse or guilt when caught is another big red flag.

If parents are concerned with physical bullying, the aggressive child or youth may also be cyber-bullying online.  This is becoming a major issue in schools, churches and youth organizations.  Gain insights into monitoring cell phone use at

Early Intervention Saves Lives

Unless there is a meaningful intervention, many adolescents with anger and aggression problems have a very good chance of spending some or a lot of time in prison.  Even if they do avoid going to prison, they will have very poor social and interpersonal skills and will have difficulty in the workplace and relationships.

Parents should know when outside intervention is needed and seek professional help. You should find a therapist who has experience in this area and is well recommended by others you trust.  Just as many therapists are not trained to work with adolescents, many are not trained to work with anger and intimidation issues.

So you can see that early intervention into aggressive behavior can mean help for your child as well as for those he/she targets with anger and malice. Early help can often mean faster and more effective recovery.

Bully Targets – Victims of Bullying

Tuesday, June 22nd, 2010

Thank you for joining this community of kind, thoughtful people who want respect for all.

As a victim, you are surrendering your power over to others so that they drive the events of your life. I just read this statement in a Twitter post about confidence.  It really struck me how much power a bully takes or is given by those who are targeted.

Bullying is About Power

When choosing a victim, bullies typically target children who have few or no friends.  If a child has at least one significant friend in school,

If your child has at least one significant friend, he will be less likely to be bullied and can more easily cope with effects of bullying should it occur.

he or she is less likely to be bullied and is usually better equipped to find solutions.

In doing research for my book The Left Out Child- The Importance of Friendship I was struck by how isolated some children are in the playground politics.  Often, it takes very little to help the child learn social skills that will draw others to him/her as friends.  Simply learning how to invite a person to play or ask to join a group game already in progress.

When adults can help strengthen the victims of bullying and teach positive ways to interact with others, both the target and the bully will benefit.  As will all of society.

Teach Assertiveness Skills

If a victim has been repeatedly bullied, they may find it very difficult to stand up to the bully and will try to avoid a confrontation at all costs.  One reason is that the bully is very good in reading body language and non-verbal clues and has learned to look for vulnerabilities in others.  If there is intervention early in the conflict, the victim may be able to shift the power and no longer be dominated.

If a potential victim or target maintains his/her composure, stands firm and consistently continues to speak in a calm voice with conviction, the bully will go elsewhere. Allow the teasing, taunting and insults to flow off your back.  Do not take them personally.

Assertive means standing firm.  It is not easy to gain this skill and may need to be practiced at home.  Have some words and body language ready when a bully tells you that you are ugly, stupid, gay or any of the other thousands of slams that bullies use on victims. Stand straight up and look the bully in the eye and don’t let him/or her see that what they have said has upset you.

Recognize that it is the bully who has the problem, not you.  He/she is looking for someone he can make feel smaller so that he/she can feel more powerful.  Don’t give them the satisfaction.

You can do it.  I have confidence in you.

PS: If your child is very shy, you will benefit from claiming a free ebook at

My Child is Being Teased – Mama Mouse into Mother Lioness

Wednesday, June 2nd, 2010

“He is picking on me because I have big ears.” “I hate school.” “Nobody likes me.” “My friend called me fat.” “Someone texted lies about me.” “Mom, you have to do something.”

As I teach parenting classes around the country, many lovely well-dressed, calm and intelligent women confide in me that they turn into a Mother Lion when their children are threatened. They are embarrassed to admit to the whole group but share privately that no holds are barred when a bully picks on their baby.

They say that all of their protective instincts rise up and they become ready to do battle. I know how they feel, because I have felt those same feelings when my child was teased or bullied. But my children let me know in no uncertain terms that if I over reacted, they would not share any more confidences with me. This may have happened to you as well.

What’s A Mother To Do?

It is so easy to have a knee jerk reaction when our children are being teased, taunted or bullied by others. Our minds immediately jump back to sixth grade when we too were teased or picked on. We remember how horrible we felt and we want to protect our son or daughter from going through the same pain.

We want to expose the bully and teach him a lesson. And while we are at it, we are going to say the things we couldn’t say 25 years ago. We want to fix this problem and we want to make the world a safer place, or at least one little corner of the playground.

Remember We Are Adults

No matter how angry we are about teasing, taunting or bullies, we need to support our children as a rational sounding board. Focus on your child by asking questions (not interrogating) and remain calm.

Tell your child that you are concerned about him or her and will do what you can to help. Perhaps the child will simply want to talk about it, or may want to do some role playing on words to say. Empower your child by asking what they want your next step to be.

You may want to talk to the teacher or principal and ask them what they have observed. They will be in the best position to understand the relationships between your child and others. They may want to keep a closer eye on things or bring the subject of empathy and kindness up in the classroom, without using names or specifics.

Big Problem or Small Conflict

It is scary for children to see their parents act like children. They are embarrassed when an over-protective parent scoops down to save them. It makes them feel even more victimized and helpless.

They need adults who will help them solve problems and to find solutions. They do not need or want their moms to attack or bully the bully. It may have been a one time incidence or a misunderstood rough housing on the playground. By next week, they may very well be best friends.

They want their story to be heard and they want to have the power to say what happens to them in their lives as much as possible.

Fine Line of Parenting

As parents, we walk a thin line between being nurturing, loving and understanding role models. If we are too over protective, they will not learn the negotiating skills necessary to survive socially in life. However, if we react too strongly to tales of teasing, we may miss giving them some necessary social skills.

However, if we ignore what they are telling us, or dismiss their concerns they may feel we don’t care.

Mother Lioness nurtures the inner strength of your child and follow his/her lead in making sense of the Playground jungle.

I have confidence in you. Listen to your heart and your child and you will know what to do next if your child is being teased or picked on.