Bullying is one of the most common menace teens go through. It affects their emotional, physical, and psychological well-being. Children who are bullied lead traumatic lives and live with subconscious fear. If either your child is bullied or is bullying others, you need to take care of these issues before they escalate. There are laws to support them. Parents can resort to legal action if the child is being bullied physically, emotionally, and mentally. They already deal with peer pressure, assignments, and other challenges. Bullying is the worst menace that the child has to deal with and could have worst repercussions on the child’s mental, emotional, and physical health.
Bullying In School And Colleges
This is the menace that starts early in life. Schools and colleges must have strict anti-bullying committee to stop and put a leash on this attribute. Schools and colleges can do the following.
- Schools and colleges must have anti-ragging committee to keep a check on this menace.
- Strict rules against bullying must be implemented with warnings and then expulsion.
- Counselling centers must be set up so that the child who is being bullied gets treated for trauma.
- Parent-teacher meetings are effective in checking the background of the family to find problem behaviours.
- It is important to speak to the parents of the child who is bullying to create a safe environment for the child in school.
- Colleges are a place where ragging happens to a point of brutality.
- The UGC circular has been passed to stop ragging by assigning anti-ragging squads to stop the menace.
- Students above the age of 18 are considered adults and there are strict laws for criminal intimidation, hurt, and personal injuries if the victim dies or commits suicide due to bullying.
In this digital age, this is a menace that we are dealing with. Children use smartphones and access the internet and social media. Not every parent is aware of the complexities of cyberbullying. Cyberbullying has taken various forms and is the most vulnerable where a person of any age can be exploited and bullied. These are the ways kids and adults too can be bullied and there are precautions to be taken.
- Through social networking, misuse of digital space, there are many loopholes which are exploited in the digital system and women, kids, and people of any age can be exploited.
- Hacking mobile phones, stealing data like personal images, videos, etc and publishing them online.
- There are people with malicious intent who misuse the digital space and cause immense harm to a person’s reputation and life through hacking, cyber stalking anonymously or will fully to cause harassment, criminal intimidation, abetment and many other forms of bullying and harassment.
- Data and identity theft to cause harm harass, and damage is a serious offence and there are cyber laws which are applicable to these kinds of crimes.
- Invasion of privacy is a serious crime where the pictures or videos of the victim are published without their consent. This can cause immense psychological, emotional, and mental harm to the victim and their reputation and life is tarnished with the same.
- There are apps which prevent cyberbullying and instances can be reported immediately. This is one of the most useful apps developed by an American-Indian teenager that helps people of any age report cyber bullying immediately. You can install this app in your child’s electronic device and teach them how to report any kind of vulnerabilities or harassment. Sexual harassment through the cyber space can also be reported.
- Girls and women are especially vulnerable to cyber bullying and fall prey to these kind of exploits. Children must be taught how to use social media and smartphones to keep them safe from predators and other malicious people.
- Check for signs of bullying, harassment, etc if your child seems withdrawn from all activities, and is showing unusual behaviour. They could be hiding that they are being ragged and could be showing signs of being abused and harassed. Sexual attraction in teens often leads to harassment and your kids must be taught values about relationships so they do not go by false believes and fall in the wrong company.
- You can use the help of authorities to get the phones and other devices scanned for attacks and vulnerabilities and report them keeping your child safe. Do not take the cyber space for granted thinking your child could not be victimized. Ensure that if your child is spending a lot of time on the internet and using phone, you can use these safety measures to protect your child.
- Teenage romance and intimacy could lead to cyber bulling, sexual harassment, and many other forms of threating and harassing behaviour. Teenagers are at the most vulnerable stage when it comes to intimacy. They have a different belief system and must be taught that there is more to life than intimate and romantic relations.
How To Help Your Child
Bullying is not something that can be ignored and neglected. If your child is being bullied, it is their mental, emotional, psychological, and physical safety at stake. These are the measures that you can take to keep your child safe from being bullied.
- Schools and colleges have mean kids who isolate, gossip, spread rumors, ostracized, and resort to all kinds of mean things that cause a lot of harm to the child.
- Your child could feel reluctant to go to school or college, might show withdrawal symptoms and many other signs if they are being bullied at school or college.
- They might fear going to school or college alone and might always need your company.
- Your child’s belongings could be damaged and there could also be other signs of damage done.
- They could stop eating, show withdrawal symptoms, and become moody and anxious.
- Have an open conversation when you see these symptoms in the child.
- Be calm and objective in listening to all that your child has to say.
- Provide them emotional support and give them assurance.
- Do not rush to fix everything.
- Though you might be angry and anxious, do not show that you are falling apart even if the situation seems difficult.
- Minimizing, rationalizing, personalizing, and blaming the child is the worst thing you can do. Completely avoid doing this if your child is being bullied at school or college.
- Name calling can be cruel and teach your children not to react and take it personally. Help them boost their self-esteem so they do not get affected by name calling and stay stronger.
- Teach your child not to fight the bully as things can escalate and get worse.
- Your child can learn smart and neutral ways to respond and not reach which can make the bully uncomfortable and eventually stop bullying.
- Use these situations to help get your child stronger instead of making them feel weak and vulnerable.
- Come up with quick and witty replies and teach them to your children which they can use should they face the bully again.
- It makes them stronger and helps keep their confidence.
- Children must be taught to walk away giving short and smart answers and not react or retort to bullying.
- Children can be taught to keep a straight face and not react to bullying. This saves a lot of hurt and pain and does not give the bully any more fodder to cause trouble again.
- Ensure that your kids are always with friends and teach them to be social and friendly. The more number of friends they have, the better is their chance of not being bullied.
- Till your child feels safe, accompany them anywhere they go.
- Keep the child engaged in constructive activities so that the child does not keep reiterating incidents of bullying in their mind.
- Use humor and teach the child to come up with witty answers if they are being called, criticized or commented upon.
- Let your children vent and express their anger against bullying.
- Children who are being physically assaulted can take the help of law enforcement and protect their children from being victimized and abused.
Bullying is a menace that kids have to deal with early on. Always keep an eye on your child’s mental, emotional, and physical well-being when they take admission in school or college. Always encourage your children to talk openly to you about any issues and give them assurance that you are there for them in the times of need.