Bullying goes beyond the occasional name-calling or teasing; it is repeated and deliberate name-calling, physical attacks, and exclusion. Deborah Carpenter’s article “How to Handle Preschool Bullies” explains that by age 3, most kids are developmentally able to have empathy for others. Bullying may be about imitating behavior they’ve seen, or getting needed attention. Kids who are bullied can experience anxiety, sleeping problems, low self esteem, lack of interest in school, and more.
As parents and caregivers, we can teach our kids social skills like empathy, problem-solving and assertiveness to try and deal with it when it happens. The message we can give our kids is “I love you. I’m here for you. Together we’ll work on a solution.” Fortunately since this issue has become more prevalent in the media, we’ve seen more resources developed to help kids (and their parents) cope.
Learn more about how to help your child deal with bullying in an upcoming free talk by Dr. Leeza Steindorf. Monday, April 3 from 7:00-8:30 pm at Cedar Mill Library meeting rooms.
Book recommendations for young kids:
Bully by Laura V Seeger
Bully B.E.A.N.S. by Julia Cook
Llama Llama and the Bully Goat by Anna Dewdney
Tease Monster: a book about teasing versus bullying by Julia Cook
Bye Bye, Big Bad Bullybug! By Ed Emberley
Freda Stops a Bully by Stuart Murphy
The Bully Blockers Club by Teresa Bateman
Justin and the Bully by Tony Dungy