Mind and Body: What parents need to know about bullying

Published 9:00 am Monday, May 7, 2018

By Angela Bereznak

Health Educator

The Centers for Disease Control and Department of Education defines bullying as “unwanted aggressive behavior, observed or perceived power imbalance, and repetition of behaviors of high likelihood of repetition. Bullying comes is various forms.

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There are two modes of bullying which includes direct ( i.e. bullying that occurs with the targeted person present) and indirect ( i.e. bullying that does not occur with the targeted person present such as gossiping about that person). Along with the modes of bullying, there are four types of bullying:

— physical

— verbal

— relational (efforts to harm the reputation of someone), and

— damage to property.

Electronic bullying or cyberbullying is primarily focused on verbal aggression (spreading rumors electronically) which is a form of indirect bullying.

Who is affected?

In the U.S., 28 percent of students in grades 6-12 have experienced bullying.

In the U.S., 20 percent of students in grades 9-12 have experienced bullying.

Nine percent of students in grades 6-12 have experienced cyber bullying. Fifteen percent of students grades 9-12 were have been electronically bullied in the last year. More than 55 percent of LGBTQ students have experienced cyberbullying.

What can be done to prevent and stop bullying?

Bullying seems like an endless cycle. I hear about it via media outlets too often. There are methods that can be taken to reduce and hopefully end bullying. A few methods are:

— Raise the topic of bullying early in a child’s life. Share with the child what bullying is, the effects it has on individuals and what they can do if they see it happen or experience bullying.

— Build confidence in children. Confidence will help children to feel that they can speak out for themselves and others.

— Become informed about school policies about bullying and teach your child those policies.

— Be available to talk to your child anytime they approach you. Teach your child that he/she can talk to you about whatever on their mind without judgement.

— Teach your child kindness and to have respect for others. People disagree and have different views, however, that does not justify bullying. Children can learn that they can not get along with someone without making fun of them and picking on that person.

— Contact your child’s school and/or law enforcement if your child is being bullied.

Information referenced from https://www.stopbullying.gov/media/facts/index.html#stats and https://www.familyeducation.com/kids/dealing-bullies.

Clark County Health Department provides programs for the entire family, including WIC, HANDS, family planning, well child care/immunizations and home health care.

For more information, call 744-4482 or visit www.clarkhealthdept.org or the department’s Facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/pages/Clark-County-Health-Department.