Who wants their child to be bullied? No parent wants their child to suffer from bullying. So, what can you do to help your child not be the target of a bully? Consider the following steps that will help to bully proof your child:
First, make sure that you enroll your child in some form of self-defense or bully safety course. Many recreation centers or local community centers will offer self-defense courses without charging, or charging very little. A bully is not going to attack a child who has the skills to fight back. Of course, not all bullying takes place in a face-to-face venue, or in a physical form. So, you may also want to teach your child how to handle an online bully. Teach them an online self-defense course. This includes things like using security, and not posting anything that could be used as a form of bullying.
Second, help your child understand that it is okay to tell on a bully. One of the best things a bully has going for them is that they can taunt other kids, calling them a baby or a tattle tell, and thus get away with bullying without getting in trouble. If someone doesn’t tell on a bully, they can bully forever. So, you will want to teach your child that bullying is never okay, and it is best to tell. Tattling is when you want to get someone in trouble, so you tell just for that reason. Of course, when someone is being a bully, they are putting other people at risk, so telling is not just about getting that person in trouble, it is about protecting other people, and so it is okay. Whether your child is 5 or 15, they should know that if someone is bullying them, or someone they know, they should tell on them.
Third, make your child a less likely target by having them use the buddy system. Never go anywhere alone, and you’ll be far less likely to be bullied. Bullies usually pick on the easiest kids to target, and a group is far more difficult for a single person to bully than an individual. So, help them find a friend, and encourage them to spend time with that friend, so that they are not going to and from school alone, or are alone on the playground, or at lunch, etc.
Besides working on making your child less of a target, and more bully proof, work on bully proofing their environment. For example, you will want to monitor online use, and their behavior and interaction at school. You will want to enroll them in a school with a no tolerance policy when it comes to bullying, which minimizes the number of bullies they will encounter. And, you will want to keep your eye open for signs that your child may be being picked on, both physically and emotionally.