Bullying is when one person targets another person is smaller, younger, or weaker and tries to harm or humiliate them. Between 25-30% of students report being bullied. With many schools having anti-bullying initiatives and lower tolerance for such behavior, more bullying has moved to the internet in various social media outlets.

Many bullies lack parental consistency for normal aggression during ages 2 to 3 and these behaviors were never really curbed or corrected. They lack social skills, have little anxiety, and usually don’t understand how others feel. They struggle to interpret social exchanges and read aggression when there usually isn’t any and react aggressively. Bullies usually pick certain types of people to target. People who are bullied share some common traits and characteristics that include: being small in size, overweight, new to a school, dress differently, are unassertive, less popular, depressed or anxious, or may be annoying to others to name just a few.

The impact of bullying is difficult and sometimes long lasting. Most victims feel intense fear, anxiety, shame, humiliation, sadness, depression, stress and their concentration are affected. Many feel isolated, alienated, loss of self-esteem, decline in school performances, missed days of school, and some even become bullies themselves in a failed attempt to feel power and control in their lives.

There are some things kids who are bullied and their parents can do that can help. It’s important to be aware of your surroundings and avoid the bully as much as possible and use a buddy system when you can. Often there is safety in numbers so not being alone can help. It’s important to stay calm as possible and not react when bullied, but simply walk away. Most bullies are seeking a reaction of some kind. If they do not get it, they are likely to move on. Tell a teacher or parent so they can help intervene. It is also important to talk about it so kids know they are not alone and can process the feelings.

Parents can be supporting and understanding with their kids and contact school teachers and administrators so they are aware. Parents can consider contacting the offender’s parents if they think they may be receptive. Parents can help coach their kids on body language, eye contact, and rehearsing things to say. If needed parents can also get kids outside support of a school counselor or a professional counselor or psychologist.

If you want to talk with one of our psychiatrist or psychologist for yourself or your child to learn more ways to cope with bulling, please call us now at 763-416-4167, or request an appointment on our website: WWW.IPC-MN.COM so we can sit down with you and complete thorough assessment and help you develop a plan of action that will work for you. Life is too short to be unhappy. Find the peace of mind you deserve.

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