Common Signs Your Child Might Be Getting Bullied
Kids can be brutal to one another. It results in stress for your child as they process what is happening and learn to cope with it. Of course, it’s also of great concern for parents as well. If you’re worried about your child, it’s only natural to want to help them defend themselves and keep them safe.
Let’s explore some red flags you should watch for to know if your kid is getting bullied.
1. Headaches and Stomachaches
Kids bullied in school may not have the courage to talk about it. The signs appear in other ways, like frequent ailments. Suppose your child constantly complains of a headache or stomachache. In that case, they might be going through something at school that is causing their anxiety to permeate through their body in physical ailment form.
Dietary changes like a loss of appetite can be a symptom of bullying. Try approaching your child with understanding and questioning them about the reason for their sudden changes. Scolding them for not eating enough will likely just make matters worse. Coax them into telling you what is going on.
2. Withdrawal From Family Functions
Being a parent sometimes entails reading between the lines. Kids are likely ashamed of being bullied and can fear getting in trouble or being judged for not standing up for themselves. This can be challenging with the never-ending to-do list you already have, but you should do your best to take notice when your child is suffering.
Any changes in their behavior, dietary habits, and socialization can cause concern. Connecting with others is an essential way of relieving negative thoughts and anxiety. When your child withdraws from family, they’re likely feeding into insecurities brought on by judgment from others.
3. Losing Interest in Socialization
Bullying is scary for children. Often, they don’t know how to react. When they tell, they can be labeled as a tattletale. When they fight back, they can get in trouble for fighting. Bullying can be confusing, and when kids don’t know the best route to take, they can get overwhelmed and completely shut down emotionally. This can cause a complete loss of interest in any social gatherings or hanging out with their friends.
They want to avoid any situation where bullying would likely occur, including going to school. If your child is suddenly using every trick in the book to get out of going to school or attending extracurricular activities they used to find fun, there’s a good chance they’re being bullied in some way or another.
4. Difficulty Sleeping
Difficulty sleeping or having frequent nightmares can be a sign of bullying. Any shift in your child’s sleeping patterns is a reason to worry because quality sleep is essential to a healthy lifestyle. Most older kids aren’t getting the needed rest and are more likely to experience various sleep challenges.
If your child is waking in the middle of the night or suddenly having issues falling asleep, consider talking with them to find the cause. Often, kids don’t want to go to the doctor, so telling them you’re worried and might need to take them can get them to open up to you about what is bothering them. Be consistent with their bedtime and limit their screen time to see if that helps before making the trip.
5. Decrease in Self-Esteem
Bullying can manifest in your child and lower their self-esteem. If you notice your child’s confidence plummet or they begin doubting themselves, they might be a victim of bullying. There isn’t much you can do to help your child if they don’t communicate with you. Encourage your child to open up about why they’re so hard on themselves. Adolescence and teenage years are tough and can harm kids’ self-image.
Encourage your child to love themselves, take time for their mental health, and support their friends’ self-image as well. Be observant and set positive examples and expectations for your child. Ensure they know who to talk to when they feel bullied or notice a bully harming someone else.
Signs Your Child Is Getting Bullied
Bullying can be physical, with apparent signs you can be watchful for – like torn clothing or bumps and bruises. Bullying can also be verbal, emotional, and hard to detect in your children.
If you witness any of these symptoms, your child might be a victim of bullying. Learn how to protect your child against bullying. Do your best to establish an open line of communication so your child feels comfortable coming to you with their fears and concerns.
Cora Gold is the Editor-in-Chief of women’s lifestyle magazine, Revivalist. She strives to live a happy and healthy life with her family by her side.