Bullying is becoming a serious problem in today’s society. Whether it’s mental, verbal, physical, or even cyber bullying, it needs to be stopped. Bullying is more common than we realize. Studies show that between 15 – 25% of all kids up through high school age are bullied, while many bullying incidents go unreported. That’s almost 1 out every 4 kids are bullied. It is estimated that each day 160,000 kids will miss school for fear of being bullied.
Many adults don’t even know that their child is being bullied because many kids are afraid to report it. It’s important to talk to your children and get to know how things are going at school, social events, in the neighborhood, or even sporting activities. Specifically ask your child how are they being treated by other kids. That will help open the dialog, and could expose potential problems your child may be having with others. Even if your child is not encountering bullying problems it’s good to educate them about the topic, and prepare them with the means to deal with it if it happens to them. There are many good resources online for parents and kids to learn about bullying and more importantly to learn about prevention and intervention strategies.
In many cases if our kids simply stand up to the bullying they can stop it. But many don’t stand up for themselves because they don’t know what to do, especially when the bullying gets physical. That’s where, as a last stand, we need to arm our kids with a physical means to defend themselves if they are attacked. Statistics show that almost half of all bullying incidents end up in physical violence. If at all possible we want to avoid physical means of self-defense by using other intervention strategies, but sometimes we have no choice. If a child is empowered with self-defense skills, that will give them the confidence to deal with a bully who is using physical aggression against them. More importantly the confidence they gain will help them in other aspects of their lives and increase their overall self-esteem. Generally when kids have higher confidence and self-esteem, they tend to be a lesser target for would be bullies. Don’t wait until it is too late, start empowering your kids today, before they become victimized by bullying.