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Archive for August 12th, 2010

I am sure at one point in your life, you were bullied by a kid at school – right? It is not fun. I have skinny fingers and I remember one boy in grade school used to torment me and ask, “Pick any locks today?” As an adult, we want to protect our kids, nieces, nephews, etc. So why, why and why? Kids bully for many reasons. Sometimes they “pick on” kids because they prey on more soft voiced children — someone who seems emotionally or physically weaker, or just acts or appears different in some way — to feel more cool, popular, or in control.

Sometimes kids torment others because they think it is okay because that is the way they were treated by other kids or from their families where there is fighting, anger, or name calling. Here are some basics to signs of bullying and how you can help.

Signs of Bulling
It can be hard to know if your child is being bullied unless there are visible signs of injury, but there are other types of warning signs. Let your child know that if he or she is being bullied — or sees it happening to another friend or schoolmate — it is important to talk to someone about it, whether it be you, another parent or adult, school teacher or a sibling.

  • Your child might be acting differently or seeming anxious, or not eating, sleeping well, or doing the things that he or she usually enjoys.
  • When kids seem moodier or start avoiding certain situations, like taking the bus to school, it may be because of a bully.

How can you help?
1.     Listen and talk to your child. Kids are often hesitant to tell adults about bullying because they feel embarrassed and ashamed that it’s happening. They worry that their parents will be disappointed. Encourage him or her to talk about school, other classmates, and the walk or bus ride to and from school. Provide everyday opportunities for children to talk about bullying, perhaps when watching TV together, reading aloud, playing a game, or going out for a walk.

2.     Take complaints seriously. Sometimes kids feel like it’s their own fault, that if they looked or acted differently it wouldn’t be happening to him or her. Sometimes they’re scared that if the bully finds out that they told, they might get beaten up or that the bully will be more mean to them. Others are worried that their parents won’t believe them or do anything about it. Make sure to praise your kid for being brave enough to talk about it and that he or she is not alone and it is most likely happening to other kids.

3.     Communicate with the school. If you think your child is having a problem, contact her teacher or school principal. Tell school officials when and where your child is being bullied, and ask them to supervise these areas.

4.     Team up with other parents. Sometimes it’s useful to approach the bully’s parents. Work together to make sure that the children in your neighborhood are supervised closely on their way to and from school.

5.     Help your child learn social skills. A confident, resourceful child who has friends is less likely to be bullied or to bully others. Encourage your child to have play dates with kids at school, or help him make friends with other children through Scouts, clubs, religious groups, etc.

6.     Help your child develop a new hobby or skill. Learning something new and enjoyable might help your child feel good about himself or herself, have more confidence, and even develop new friends.

7.     Teach your child how to walk away. It may be tempting to tell your child to fight back. After all, you most likely will be upset that your child is distresses and maybe you were told to “stand up for yourself” when you were young.  However, it is important to advise kids to NOT respond to bullying by fighting or bullying back. It can lead to violence, more trouble, and someone getting injured. Instead, encourage your child to walk away from the situation and hang out with their friends that love them.  It can be helpful to use the buddy system at school to avoid bullies.

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Lovely Lillith is our Le Top Darling of the Day. This Le Top spring 2009 Butterfly Wishes set is always a classic and still a favorite for her summer wardrobe.  She even has a dragonfly ‘arm accessory’ to finish off the look. I think this angelic little one will set the trend that all the other kids will follow.

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