Your child has always enjoyed learning, but lately seems eager to avoid school. Stomachaches and mysterious illnesses pop up in the evening and seem to get worse as the school bus creeps closer to your street the next morning. It's possible the problem has nothing to do with how last night's dinner was digested. Your child could be worried sick over a schoolyard bully.
Bullies can take the fun out of school - where bullying happens most - and turn something simple like a ride on the bus, stop at a locker, or walk to the bathroom into a scary event that's anticipated with worry all day.
Children who are bullied often experience low self-esteem and depression, whereas those doing the ...view middle of the document...
Although the black eye is a concrete sign that your child may be a victim of bullying, there are many different ways kids bully that aren't always as easy to spot:
â€¢ Cyber bullying - a relatively new phenomenon - began surfacing as modern communication technologies advanced. Through email, instant messaging, Internet chat rooms, and electronic gadgets like camera cell phones, cyber bullies forward and spread hurtful images and/or messages. Bullies use this technology to harass victims at all hours, in wide circles, at warp speed.
â€¢ Emotional bullying can be more subtle and can involve isolating or excluding a child from activities (i.e., shunning the victim in the lunchroom or on school outings) or spreading rumors. This kind of bullying is especially common among girls.
â€¢ Physical bullying can accompany verbal bullying and involves things like kicking, hitting, biting, pinching, hair pulling, or threats of physical harm.
â€¢ Racist bullying preys on children through racial slurs, offensive gestures, or making jokes about a child's cultural traditions.
â€¢ Sexual bullying involves unwanted physical contact or sexually abusive or inappropriate comments.
â€¢ Verbal bullying usually involves name-calling, incessant mocking, and laughing at a child's expense.
Also, despite the common notion that bullying is a problem mostly among boys, both boys and girls bully. But boys and girls can vary in the ways they bully. Girls tend to inflict pain on a psychological level. For example, they might ostracize victims by freezing them out of the lunchroom seating arrangements, ignoring them on the playground, or shunning them when slumber party invitations are handed out.
Boys aren't as subtle and...