Identifying a bully is not a difficult task. However, if the bully is in your own house, and especially, if it is the little child that you have raised, it can become a battle of denial. Still, acknowledging this at the very beginning and appropriately addressing it, is the only way you can help your little one deal with her issues and become a better person.
A bully is never born- she is created, and unfortunately, it is the circumstances that make her one. So, in case of your preteen, there are high chances that the situation responsible for turning her into a bully, is one that you yourself created at home.
Bullying is usually a sign of internal turmoil that an individual is going through, where the bully often finds creating similar havoc in others’ lives; the easiest way of dealing with his turmoil.
Ways To Find out if Your Kid is being a Bully
1. Having Problems at School
If you often find her getting into trouble at school or with classmates, chances are she is at fault more than you may credit her with. Have an honest conversation with her teacher or school authorities on what their views are. An unbiased and third-party point of view can be the eye-opener, you need in such matters.
2. Being Defiant
Observe if she has become defiant or confrontational with you or even in general. This should be your first alarm bell. Such kids will not care about what you have to say or what you think – everything is only about them and the joy they get from their actions. You can also pick this up, if you observe her behaviour when guests are home or when she is with friends in the playground and so on.
3. Her Friend Circle
Notice, how she speaks and how she behaves with her friends. If you find a high level of bully-like behaviour in her friends, chances are, she is one too. It is difficult to stay away from herd mentality in such instances. If you notice them referring to other kids as ‘stupid’ or in some demeaning manner, this may be a sign of trouble in paradise too. Cross-check this with her school teacher or keep a watchful eye on her activities, thereafter.
4. The Environment at Home
If you do not share a great relationship with your little one and if there has been a lot of trouble brewing at the home front in her presence, bullying could become a natural outlet for her aggression and inner confusion. Take her teachers into confidence in such matters so they can help you figure out where her strange and unruly behaviour is coming from, and take appropriate steps.
5. Obsession with Popularity
Watching your child morphing into an individual who is keen on being the most popular kid in school should be a tell-tale sign for you. This means that she will go to any lengths to get the popularity, she thinks, she deserves. Again, observe what she and her friends do and what they talk about, when together. This should give you some vital cues.
The art of bullying begins at home. Having tested that she can get away with it at home, your kid will start trying her luck elsewhere – beginning with kids in the playground or even kindergarten. As indulgent parents, we often ignore the early signs. So ensure to step in at the right time, before it gets out of hand.