Bullying (cont.)

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What should parents do if they think their child is bullying others?

Advice for parents who think their child is bullying others includes talking to their child to share the details of the actions of which they have been accused and listening to their side of what happened, holding your child fully and fairly accountable for their actions, spending more time with him or her, monitoring their activities, and supervising them appropriately. Other tips for parents whose children are bullying others include staying in close touch with the school to monitor for any further incidents and encouraging your child to engage in positive social activities with positive role models.

What can people do if they see someone being bullied?

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Bystanders to bullying can help discourage bullying behavior by asking other people who are witnessing the bullying how they feel about what they have seen and whether they feel the behavior is right or wrong. The group of bystanders can decide individually or as a group to voice their disapproval toward the bully and/or notify people in authority, like teachers at school or supervisors or the human resources department in the workplace. Bystanders to bullying can also discourage the behavior by encouraging the victim to ask for help from peers and authority figures.

What measures can be implemented to prevent bullying at school and in the workplace?

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Effective bullying prevention programs at school tend to be school-wide and involve education of students, teachers, administrators, and parents on what bullying is, understanding attitudes about victims, and how to get help. Just informing the parents of bullying victims tends to improve the victim child's quality of life. Successful anti-bullying programs increase playground supervision, provide clear consequences for bullying, and teach students who are bystanders to bullying how to stand up for victims so that bullying behavior gains a stigma rather than being socially beneficial.

Interventions that have not consistently been found to be helpful in preventing bullying include having the bully and victim try to work out their differences in front of a teacher or counselor at school, a supervisor, or human resources staff at work. Rigid rather than firm no tolerance for bullying policies tend to result in overreactions to behaviors that do not constitute bullying. Telling students above the elementary school level to report bullying may lead to increased bullying. Teachers or work supervisors who either directly or indirectly either intimidate students themselves or tolerate such behaviors are an obstacle to implementing an effective anti-bullying school program.

Medically Reviewed by a Doctor on 7/30/2013

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Bullying - Workplace Question: What have you found to be effective at preventing bullying in the workplace?
Bullying - Prevention Question: Have you witnessed someone being bullied? What did you do to stop the bullying?