Bullying is very prevalent today. It's always been a problem, but I feel that today parents don't know what to do when their kids are the bullies. Parents of the children being bullied have limited options also.
Contacting the parents of the bully should be your last resort. Many parents get defensive and say that's not my child! Or will find a way to turn back the problem on to your child. Sometimes I blame that on the parents inability to understand how to control their child when they are not with them. I'm sure they know it was their child, but fear of looking like a bad parent sets in.
Get the details and keep a log. You will want to record, where, and what is said. Write it down immediately when your child tells you. Let your child know it is unacceptable, but if your child continues to tell you the details and is honest about what is happening, you can help them better. Some kids are afraid to tell their parents for many reasons. Make sure your child is not afraid to tell you!
Take pictures if there is any physical harm. Writing on clothing, or physical wounds.
Remember to get the entire story! What started the problem? What was your child's response, etc.
If the problem happened in school on the playground or in the classroom the first step is to contact your child's teacher. You know your own situation and the teacher best. Is it best to email the teacher? Or request to speak with the teacher. Whatever you think is best. If your child has been physically harmed, then bring in any evidence and in that case you must go in person.
If it happens on the bus, speak with the bus driver! That bus driver has a lot of kids and can't be watching them all, but if you point out what happened, they might know or be able to keep a better eye on the situation. If the problem is ongoing you may request assigned seats for the kids involved. If you do this, make sure you keep an eye on how the bully reacts to the situation. You don't want this to cause a bigger problem since your child told on them.
If the Teacher or Bus driver aren't helping the situation it's time to bring in the chief! Speak with the principal and tell them the situation, ask what can be done. Make sure that the principal realizes how this affecting your child.
If things are really not helping you can try the parents. I would do it as last resort though, because Nobody likes to hear that their children are bad. Especially from another parent. They take it better if it is the school calling them sometimes. But if the school isn't doing anything, you must for your child's sake put an end to the bullying.
If these don't stop the problem, you will need to fight hard. If it's a bus issue you can demand that the school take away the bully's bus privileges for a specific time, so that the parents wake up and realize the kids bullying is an inconvenience to everyone. Also this kind of measure often will wake up a parent because they are embarrassed it came to that.
Don't stop until the problem is over.. You may have to contact even higher up on the chain of command! Your child is worth it!
Bullying sometimes starts at home so you're right. Contacting the parent should be the first step but often only makes matters worse. I still have the pictures from when my daughter was hit with a coke bottle on the bus.
Good advice for a challenging and uncomfortable situation.
Great list! Bullying is a very a difficult situation indeed.
select one here...