Posted by: Sanet | 2004/10/28

7-year old needs help

My son is 7 years old and in grade 1. He does good at school and in sport but does not make friends easily. He has got friends though. This morning he was not feeling too well and did not really want to go to school. I said to him that I wish I was his brother so that I could sleep late because he is not in school yet. So my 7-year old said that he wish that he was not born. I was shocked and tried to find out what the problem was. So he said that his friends at school is bullying him and swearing at him. I don't know what to do. Should I get help and if so where do I go to?

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Our expert says:
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Sanet, sorry to hear about this, but rest assured that this is a soluble problem. Kids who bully others can be vicious and horibly talented at recognizing another child's vulnerabilities. Speak to the headmaster of your son's school, and, through him, your son's teachers. Work with them to ensure that the bully / bullies are warned of dire consequences if they don't stop their nonsense.
Good advice, too, from The Friend and Shaun. And provide your son, as usual, with confidence in your love for him.

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Our users say:
Posted by: Shaun | 2004/10/28

Hi Sanet,

Great words from The Friend above.

Yes, you need to take action as this could have a long term negative effect on your child. If the school has a councillor, make sure to approach him/her. Speak to the principal as well. Most of all, try anyway you can to determine what type of bullying your son is experiencing without insisting or forcing the issue.

Discretion is quite important as he is already being bullied, so he wouldn't want to feel like you went against him in anyway. Very delicate situation, but be there & support him. Always re-inforce the notion in direct or subtle ways that no one person has the right to bully another. & also try to make sure that he, as a person, always has rights. Build his confidence up so he becomes assertive. Even at that age they are able to avert violence & come out feeling better about it.

Just be there for him, do not force, & always re-assure & stand fast on your mention of his rights as a person. Be not too hard on the little bugger.

Don't leave it alone, take the necessary steps & stop this kind of behaviour as soon as you can.

Take care,

Reply to Shaun
Posted by: The Friend | 2004/10/28

Bullying is not a new trend, most boys and girls are a victim of bullying in one way or another at school every day. It’s a terrible fact that needs to be addressed. But be aware that your child may not want to tell you everything for fear of intervention and being teased because of it. The children responsible for bullying are also just kids, don’t forget that. They are from all walks of life and need a little guidance! My advise: Discreetly go to the school teacher responsible for your child’s guidance counseling and find out more about the child or children involved. Also remember that surviving these tests in life is part of growing up and if too sheltered a child may become resentful or withdrawn. Good Luck!

Reply to The Friend

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