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September 1st, 2010
04:45 PM ET

Bullying: Help your child handle a school bully

(MayoClinic.com) Bullying was once considered a childhood rite of passage. Today, however, bullying is recognized as a serious problem. Up to half of all children are bullied at some point during their school years, according to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry. And thanks to tech-savvy kids, cyberbullying and other forms of electronic harassment are now commonplace.

To help your child handle school bullying, learn to recognize it — and know how to respond.

Types of bullying

Any child can be bullied, particularly younger children and those who have few friends or are easily intimidated. At any age, bullying can take many forms. For example:

* Physical bullying includes hitting, punching, kicking and other types of physical harm, as well as destruction of a child's property.
* Verbal bullying includes teasing, name-calling, taunting and racial slurs, as well as spreading gossip or malicious rumors.
* Cyberbullying includes harassing emails, instant messages and text messages, as well as intimidating or threatening websites, blogs or posts.

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Filed under: 360° Radar
soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. Don Breedwell

    Thanks for this great article. As a high school teacher this is info that has to get out earlier and earlier. Thanks and keep up the great job!

    September 1, 2010 at 6:30 pm |
  2. Anonymous

    This article is correct, except for one thing: The idea that simply saying, "please stop" then walking away will solve the problem is ludicrous and shows that the author of this report was never the victim of bullying himself/herself. The bully will simply follow the child and taunt him even more, probably resorting to physical violence. Also, many school officials are still very unresponsive to student-originated complaints regarding bullying, so you cannot rely on that, either.

    Contrary to the article's claim, it is essential that you teach your child how to fight back and defend himself/herself if the diplomatic approach (i.e. "please stop") doesn't work (which it probably won't). Children need to learn that they have a right to defend themselves if attacked, just as adults do. You might want to consider enrolling your child in a martial arts program to accomplish this, which would also serve to boost self-confidence and personal discipline.

    September 1, 2010 at 5:04 pm |