Bullying In The Family
Bullying doesn’t only occur at school or at the office. Admit it or not, bullying can also occur inside the family. It is tough to notice that bullying is happening in your supposedly ‘safe haven,’ but it is better to open your eyes to the possibilities. As a parent, you should be wary of the warning signs that indicate bullying is happening in your own home.
Here are some of the warning signs that you can watch out to spot bullying in the family:
Afraid to be left alone with siblings
If your child is afraid to be left alone with his or her siblings, there might be some bullying around the corner. Observe how your child reacts with your other children. Is he or she quiet around them? Does your child follow their orders? Is his or her head always bowed down or not looking directly at his or her siblings? Your child might have been already hurt emotionally because of bullying.
Older siblings making jokes on the younger siblings
It is totally fine to have fun and make jokes from time to time. But, if the jokes are getting more personal and degrades the receiver, it is a major red flag. It is normal that the older siblings would pick on and make fun of the younger siblings. However, you must be cautious about them overdoing it.
If your bullied child doesn’t respond to jokes or cry afterward, his or her feelings might be hurt. Make sure to ask your child why he or she responds to such jokes in that manner.
Loss of Appetite
Family meal is always a bonding time for the family. It is the time when all the members of the family take a break from their own dwellings and enjoy a meal together. It is also the time when the family members share their plan for the day or the significant events that happened during the day.
Observe if one of your children, especially the younger ones, doesn’t eat much like he or she used to. In addition, take note if your child participates in the discussions. If he or she shows one of these warning signs, confront your child privately where he or she can feel safe to share the bullying he or she is experiencing.
Talks back to you or to other siblings
Talking back can also be a major warning sign. This means that your child is fighting back after being bullied for several times. Your child may already have a buildup of anger issues that he or she projects to other people, especially to the other family members.
Try not to add salt to injury and answer back. Handle this situation calmly and with full understanding. Allow your child to feel that you are there for him or her. Let your child understand that you just want to help.
Now that you know the most common warning signs of a child being bullied at his or her own home, make sure to do the necessary actions to stop bullying from happening again. You can ask for help, specifically therapy, from a professional through online therapy or you can mediate the bullying yourself. After all, you are responsible for the welfare and well-being of your children. It’s time to make love and not war.