As a parent, it’s hard to hear that your teen is being bullied. The best thing you can do first up is to listen, then to let your teen know you will help them deal with it.
Here are some tips to help you both:
- If your teen’s safety is at risk, don’t delay. Contact the school immediately.
- Most schools have a documented anti-bullying policy so this is often a good place to start.
- Assure your teen that under no circumstances is bullying acceptable.
- Encourage your teen to avoid engaging in physical or verbal conflict with the bully. This will only make the situation worse and land your teen in trouble.
- Do not take matters into your own hands either, by retaliating against the bully or their family.
- Stay calm and positive. Show your teen that confidence and resilience can help stop bullying from escalating further.
- Work with your teen to improve their social skills and learn strategies for dealing with bullying.
- Report any incidents of bullying to an appropriate member of the school staff, such as the school counsellor, or principal.
- If your teen wants to talk to someone else about the issue, give them the Kids Helpline number 1800 55 1800.
There are a number of support services and resources available: