Are you worried your child is being bullied?
It can be very stressful and upsetting to discover your child is being bullied. Your child might feel:
- upset or scared
- that there's nothing anyone can do to help them
- that if they report it things could get worse
But you can help them in lots of ways.
- It's obvious, but you must give them support; talk to them about what's happening, encourage them, make sure they know you are there for them.
- Suggest to them that they keep a diary of everything that happens.
- Encourage them to get help - there's no shame in suggesting that they speak to a professional at ChildLine on 0800 1111.
- Tell them about Beatbullying's CyberMentor scheme (see below for details).
- You might also consider talking to someone yourself.
Who to talk to
- Talk to family friends, or parents and carers of other pupils in your child's school. Perhaps they know about what's happening. They might even be going through exactly the same as you.
- If the bullying is taking place at school contact your child's teacher or head teacher and talk to them about what's happening to your child.
- For incidents of bullying at school you could also consider contacting the Safer Schools Officer. Most types of bullying aren't normally a matter for police unless someone is hurt or a crime is committed. But one of the jobs of the Safer Schools Officers is to help teachers prevent bullying so they will want to know what's going on. Find out how to contact your child's Safer School Officer here
What we don't recommend you do is take matters into your own hands, as this could get you into trouble yourself, and will not help your child.
Registered charity Beatbullying can offer your child access to highly-trained young people who'll support and advise them online. CyberMentors can assist with how to cope with bullying or just be there to offer support. So if you don't think your child will talk to you about their problems, encourage them to contact a CyberMentor.
Is it getting serious?
Of course, all bullying is serious, but if the problem is so bad that your child has been physically attacked or assaulted, then the police must get involved. As well as speaking to their Safer Schools Officer there are other ways to report a crime: