Friday, April 1, 2011

Beware of the Signs and Symptoms of the Bullied Child!

Many times parents and educators are unaware that a child or teen is being bullied or harassed..  The victims exhibit outward noticeable signs but many times those signs are thought to be symptoms of illness, attention deficit disorder or "growing pains." Bullying can lead to depression and even suicide.[bullycide]  The signs leading up to depression are the effects of bullying.  Many times the bullied victim is too embarrassed to tell mom, dad or teachers that he or she is being bullied.  So it is vital that parents and educators look for the signs of possible bullying so intervention can take place immediately before the situation becomes worse. Here are signs compiled by that a child or teen is being bullied:

  • Comes home with damaged or missing clothing or other belongings
  • Reports losing items such as books, electronics, clothing, or jewelry
  • Has unexplained injuries
  • Complains frequently of headaches, stomachaches, or feeling sick
  • Has trouble sleeping or has frequent bad dreams
  • Has changes in eating habits
  • Hurts themselves
  • Are very hungry after school from not eating their lunch
  • Runs away from home
  • Loses interest in visiting or talking with friends
  • Is afraid of going to school or other activities with peers
  • Loses interest in school work or begins to do poorly in school
  • Appears sad, moody, angry, anxious or depressed when they come home
  • Talks about suicide
  • Feels helpless
  • Often feels like they are not good enough
  • Blames themselves for their problems
  • Suddenly has fewer friends
  • Avoids certain places
  • Acts differently than usual
Talking to your children is the first step.  If you suspect your child is being bullied it is important to then notify the school.  The school has an obligation to investigate the situation according to it's policy.  If there is a bullying situation they should have a policy in place on the procedure that follows.  Florida law, as I stated in earlier posts mandates that the schools implement such policies.  We will investigate further what constitute those policies.

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