1. As a parent or school informs you that your child is bullying, stay calm and listen to the details of the incident. Do not get defensive or angry. As hard as it is, this is a wake-up call that your child needs help. Reassure the caller that you will talk to your child.
2. Talk to your child and listen to his/her side of the story. Don’t interrupt or overreact since keeping the line of communication open is essential.
3. Let your child know that any kind of bullying behavior is unacceptable and you will support schools policy to make sure this does not happen again.
4. Take a deep breath and evaluate the situation. You know your child best; try to figure out why he/she bullies. Here are some common reasons why:
5. Teach the appropriate behavior. Get help from the teachers, school counselor or a therapist and consider a behavioral evaluation with a psychologist if your child has a history of arguing, defiance or has trouble controlling anger.
6. Encourage having compassion, understanding, tolerance, and accepting differences. Talk about the importance of friendship and kindness.
7. Be the example. Watch how conflicts are being handled at home because chances are your child is copying that behavior! Demonstrate how to resolve conflicts with peace and respect. Make sure at home there’s no yelling, name-calling, putdowns, harsh criticism, or physical violence happening between adults or siblings.
Please visit our Bully page and watch all the videos together with your child. Ask, if she/he has felt or experienced any of the points discussed. Keep the line of communication open by being a compassionate listener without judging to make sure the line of communication always remains open with your child.