Question: My daughter says she is being bullied at school. How do I know if it is true bullying or normal school issues? If she is being bullied how can I help out?
Answer: There is a big difference between bullies and children who are not being nice. Unfortunately, it is hard to know unless you are watching it happen. Bullies bully because they like to do it. They think it is fun to pick on people and feel no remorse when the victim shows emotion. They enjoy it. In fact, they thrive on it. A child who merely is being mean will show remorse and feel badly about it. Bullies will continue to bully repeatedly. Children who are being mean often stop after the first time.
Another characteristic of bullies is that they bully in situations where there is an imbalance of power — meaning the bully has either psychological or physical power over the victim. The victim can not stand up to the bully because if he or she tries, the bully will win the confrontation.
It is important that if your child is being bullied that an adult is notified at the school. The only way to prevent bullying is to have adult intervention. When this happens the bully does not have the power or control anymore. Counselors, administrators, teachers are all people who can help your child. Do not hesitate to talk to them if you feel your child is being bullied.