Bullying Is Serious: What To Look For

It’s a common occurrence. One child picks on the other. Feelings get hurt. Tears fall and often parents are left wondering what they can do to help their child understand and accept it’s a sad fact of life. Dealing with a bully isn’t easy. But do your kids know how to spot a bully? 

A couple of days ago my son JJ came into the house, huffing, and puffing.  He was scared and could barely talk.  

He told me some boy from across the street was over playing hockey and that he’d accidentally hit him with the hockey stick while taking a shot on net. One thing led to another and suddenly my son found himself in a headlock getting his gut-punched by a child much smaller than him.

First off I told my son he did the right thing by coming to me. It’s important for kids to talk to their parents when something is wrong in their life.

I try to teach my boys that open communication is not the same as tattle-tailing on someone or getting someone in trouble. Not when the main goal is to protect themselves or someone else.

First Step For A Parent Dealing With A Bully Is To Be Calm

I immediately went outside to have a chat with the boy in question.  Being calm has never been something I’ve been good at. Not when it comes to my kids.

I got down on the boys level and told him under no circumstances is he to put his hands on my son.  I would not tolerate bullying of any kind. If he should have a problem, he is to come and talk to me and together we can try to figure out any disagreements they might have.

It was then the unthinkable happened.

This boy. This small boy who couldn’t be taller than four and a half feet and weighing about a buck o’five when wet looked at me and replied…

The boy began to walk away with his filthy little punk mouth when I told him not to come back. He was trespassing and if he was going to hurt people physically I would have to go to his parents. He turned around and looked me straight in the eye.

I couldn’t believe what I had heard. I was flabbergasted!

Excuse me?

WTF did I just hear?

Did this boy just threaten to kill my kid?

Now I will admit shamefully that part of me wanted to storm down the hill, grab the little punk by the scruff of his neck, and give him the ultimate beating his parents had obviously neglected to give their mouthy offspring. But I couldn’t do that. I would never hurt a child, and violence doesn’t beget violence. Instead, I did what any sane parent would do.

I phoned the police.

I told Jake I phoned the police not only to make him feel safe but to protect the boy as well, keep him from doing something stupid he might later on regret and besides, they both go to the same school.

Jake felt really bad the cops were called. He sulked in the living room. I could tell he wasn’t sure if he’d done the right thing. I explained to him that bullying on top of threats means that boy is crying out. Aiming to do hard to someone is never okay and should be taken very seriously. Nobody should ever live in fear.

The police came. They talked to Jake. The cop was so good. He explained how it’s more important to talk to someone than it is to fight back because you can get hurt.

You never ever let anyone bully you. You also did the right thing by not retaliating because you are the bigger boy and you could have been labeled as the aggressor.  It’s always good to tell someone when someone threatens to hurt you, no matter how bad you feel. You are actually helping that person more than hurting them.

Jake felt better after speaking to the policeman. Apparently, the boy’s mother explained he’s been having issues and it was good to report things.

We have a meeting with the school on Monday to make sure that the situation doesn’t escalate any further. Both the boy in question and my son need to be safe from harm when going to school.

There are warning signs to look out for. Bullying is serious and can lead to other issues. No matter what it’s important to talk to your kids. Make sure they know how important it is to tell someone when something bad is going on.

Have your kids ever had to deal with a bully? How did you help them? Would love to hear…

P.S. How to talk to your kids about Bullying. and 13 Reasons Why Explores Teen Suicide Due to Bullying

(Top Photo by Pexels)

1 Comment

  1. RoryBore April 25, 2011 at 10:36 am

    OMG! I can't believe he said that! I can't believe the things I hear coming out of little pipsqueaks mouths' these days. it used to be that I thought there was simply no respect….but it is even beyond that now. There seems to be a complete void of empathy that is nestled right in there with an overblown sense of entitlement. Is it these brats that will rule the world one day? God help us.

    I hope everything turns out okay.


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