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Is Your Child a Bully?

Warning Signs Your Child May Be a Bully

  • He or she complains of being mistreated by other children or the teacher.
  • He or she intimidates or threatens siblings with their words.
  • He or she is violent toward siblings and the pets.
  • You receive phone calls from parents who have complaints about your child’s behavior.
  • You are called into the school and told that your child is being a bully.


What You Can Do to Help Your Child Who Is a Bully

One of the first steps to change a child’s bullying behavior is to uncover the source of his behavior. Simply telling your child to stop their behavior is not adequate.

After you have determined what might be prompting your child’s bullying behavior, talk with him or her. Tell the child that their behavior is unacceptable. Try to help your child understand how bullying is wrong and how it makes others feel. Ask your child if he or she has been feeling upset about anything. Encourage the child to talk about his or her feelings. If your child continues to be a bully, you may need to find a counselor to help your child address his or her needs.

Why do Children Bully Others?

Most children who bully others use bullying to display a form of insecurity. Many children who are bullies have low self-esteem and do not feel that they fit in with other kids. They use bullying as a way to protect themselves from the hurt and rejection of other children.

Some children bully when there has been a change in their living situation. If a child has a new sibling, has moved, if the child’s parents have recently divorced or any other household change has occurred may account for the reason the child has resorted to bullying. Bullying may give a child in a feeling of control in his or her life.


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