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10 Things Every Parent And Grandparent Needs To Know About Bullying

littlethings.com logo littlethings.com 10/2/2019 Grace Eire

Grandfather and boy leaning foreheads together, visit on weekend, elderly care © Getty Grandfather and boy leaning foreheads together, visit on weekend, elderly care Bullying has become a huge problem in America. It’s come to a point where some children are skipping school and even turning to destructive behavior in order to avoid the type of terrible bullying happening nationwide.

Bullying isn’t just “kids being kids.” No. Bullying is consistent harassment that scars a person, emotionally and sometimes even physically. Bullying grinds down a person’s self-worth to a pulp, making it hard to concentrate in class, or even to find the will to go to class at all.

When a kid is bullied, walking through the halls at school is like walking through a battleground unarmed.

Many schools have very good anti-bullying policies that teachers strictly enforce. However, not all schools are created equal. Sometimes, bullying goes unnoticed by schools. In those cases, it may be up to the parent, grandparent, or legal guardian to step in.

Some children have even had to switch schools due to bullying. However, before resorting to that, read up on these 10 bullying facts that every parent and grandparent should know.

1. Every Child Is Capable Of Bullying

Even if you have the sweetest, gentlest child or grandchild, the pull of peer pressure can be quite strong. If you find out that your kid is bullying, especially if they feel pressured into doing so, turn it into a teaching moment and make sure they know that being kind is more important than being liked.

2. Over 3 Million Students Are Bullied Each Year

The number is actually a bit higher than this, because not all cases of bullying are reported. That is a huge amount of students suffering each and every day in a place where they should be learning.

3. Some Teachers Don't Think Bullying Is Wrong

One in four teachers don’t see anything wrong with bullying and will only intervene about 4 percent of the time, according to DoSomething.org. If you think your student might be involved in bullying on either end, you need to make sure that the teacher is addressing the problem; otherwise, you need to step in yourself.

4. One in 10 Students Will Drop Out Because Of Bullying

Bullying isn’t just a harmless part of being an adolescent: it can completely derail a life. In today’s competitive society, a high school degree is essential. However, bullying keeps 10 percent of students in America from graduating.

5. There Is A Difference Between Bullying And Being Mean

Calling someone a name one time does not constitute bullying, but calling someone the same name every day for an extended period of time is bullying. Bullying is intentional and mean-spirited, while the occasional mean or emotional outburst might be more expected from a growing child.

6. The Bathroom Is A Bullying Hot Spot

According to BullyingStatistics.org, half of students fear being bullied in the bathroom, as the space is “out of sight and out of mind” of the teachers and authority figures at the school.

7. Kids Who Do What They Love Are Less Likely To Bully

It’s so important to encourage your kids and grandkids to do what they love most. Whether that is sports, an instrument, volunteering, theater, or chess, encourage it. Kids who join clubs and do things in which they are genuinely interested are more likely to be happy, friendly, and fulfilled, and less likely to lash out or lean into mean behaviors like bullying.

8. Cyberbullying Is A Whole Different Animal

Cyberbullying can happen at any time of the day; it can happen anonymously, and it can spread quickly. It can be challenging to trace cyberbullying back to the source, which is why it’s hard to discipline. If your child or grandchild is being cyberbullied, there are certain steps you need to take, including reporting the cyberbullying online, to the authorities, and to the schools.

9. Middle School Is The Most Common Age For Bullying

The preteen years are some of the most awkward times in a kid’s life, and that makes them more susceptible to either feel the need to bully or to be bullied themselves. In addition to verbal bullying and cyberbullying, this could include physical bullying, which is when the bully physically harms another child’s body or possessions.

Keep a keen eye out for bruises, both physical or emotional, during these years of your child or grandchild’s life. The earlier you stop bullying, the better. Remember, awareness is critical.

10. There Is No Federal Anti-Bullying Law

Anti-bullying laws are determined state by state, so you should know where your state stands. There are times when bullying overlaps with harassment, like when the behavior is related to race or religion. That is when the federal government can intervene.

All in all, you need to keep a close watch on your child or grandchild all the way from kindergarten to high school. Keep the lines of communication open with them, and make sure that you encourage them to talk to you about anything they need without fear of consequence.

Slideshow: 18 proven strategies to teach kids to handle bullying (Courtesy: Cheapism)
a group of people looking at the camera: Sadly, the majority of the world's youth are exposed to bullying in some way. According to U.S. Department of Education, between 1 in 4 and 1 in 3 U.S. students are bullied, with the most common occurrence of bullying happening in middle school. While not every student is bullied, a whopping 70 percent of students have witnessed bullying. Whether or not they're the target, bullying can create a stressful and unhealthy learning environment for students of all ages. Here are tips for parents and kids to understand bullying — and how to stop it. © FatCamera/istockphoto Sadly, the majority of the world's youth are exposed to bullying in some way. According to U.S. Department of Education, between 1 in 4 and 1 in 3 U.S. students are bullied, with the most common occurrence of bullying happening in middle school. While not every student is bullied, a whopping 70 percent of students have witnessed bullying. Whether or not they're the target, bullying can create a stressful and unhealthy learning environment for students of all ages. Here are tips for parents and kids to understand bullying — and how to stop it.

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