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What Are the Warning Signs of Bullying?

Children who become withdrawn may be victims of bullying.
A child's increased anxiety or irritability may be a sign of bullying.
Unexplained bruises may be a sign of physical bullying.
Low self-esteem can be a sign of a child who has been bullied.
A school bus may be a site for bullying.
Article Details
  • Written By: B. Miller
  • Edited By: Andrew Jones
  • Last Modified Date: 12 August 2014
  • Copyright Protected:
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    Conjecture Corporation
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It is important to notice the warning signs of bullying in order to deal with the situation quickly. Mood changes in a child are some of the best indicators that he or she is being bullied; he might suddenly become depressed, withdrawn, or irritable, or may start asking to stay home from school frequently or lose interest in schoolwork. In addition, some physical signs of bullying may include unexplained bruises and cuts, or items suddenly going missing, like articles of clothing, money, or personal items brought to school.

The signs of bullying may vary for different kids and situations, since not every instance of bullying is exactly the same. Some children may come home from school with cuts or bruises, or say that their money or belongings were stolen. Some kids might also try to take a different route to school if they walk, for example, or may want to stop riding the school bus. One of the most common signs of bullying is when kids will wake up with frequent stomach aches or other illnesses, saying they want to stay home from school, even if there doesn't appear to be anything actually wrong.

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Not all signs of bullying are physical, however. Mental and emotional indicators are sometimes much more likely, since a lot of bullying is just verbal, or may even be taking place entirely online, such as through social networking web sites. Children may become depressed or withdrawn, or may want to stop participating in school activities that they used to enjoy. Grades will also frequently suffer in children who are being bullied. Parents might notice that children suddenly only have one or two friends, or even no friends at all.

Some other noticeable signs of bullying may include changes in appetite or difficulty sleeping. Kids might display increased anxiety or irritability, or develop new phobias or fears. Some may also begin to talk negatively about themselves. If parents notice any of these signs of bullying, it is important to sit down with the child and have a conversation to try to determine what is going on. If the child states that bullying is occurring, it may be necessary to get involved at the school and speak to the child's teacher or someone in the administration office; sometimes it takes more than one report before the problem is resolved, so it is important to be vigilant and continue to look for signs that the bullying is continuing or worsening.

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Discuss this Article

SnowyWinter
Post 3

@anon165949- Sophie’s situation is very sad. I agree with “gardenturtle” to an extent. However, from you are saying, Sophie is experiencing physical abuse and that constitutes police involvement. The school needs to know that you are pursuing the matter and, if it were me, I would demand some type of consequence to the individual or individuals that are abusing her.

Bullying in schools must be stopped. Your child should not be physically abused while she is at school. There was a case in Minnesota where a teenage boy was being beat up every day at school. The physical and emotional damage was severe and the family sued the school system. I would suggest letting the school board know that it will no longer be tolerated and you are prepared to take legal action.

GardenTurtle
Post 2

@anon165949- I would definitely consider the fact that Sophie is being bullied at school. What you are describing falls under classic symptoms of a bully victim. Many victims of bullying, regardless of their age, do not want to talk about it to their parents. One reason for that is that the bullying gets worse once the person doing the bullying finds out that the other child’s parents came to the school. Then, the victim is often called names like “momma’s baby” or other ugly names.

Regardless of that, I would recommend to you that your daughter talk to the guidance counselor at the school. Perhaps you could call the school and suggest that they do it and she won’t think that you are behind it. Sometimes, our kids are more comfortable talking to someone other than their parents about issues such as this.

Bullying should not be tolerated and I would take to the highest level possible. That often leads to the superintendent at the board of education. I wish you luck with Sophie.

anon165949
Post 1

When my daughter comes from school, her bag is full of dirt and her clothes are ripped. Her face has scratches, her grades dropped from A's to D's. She’s really sad angry and very moody.

They stole her oyster card like three times, and they even three times kicked her in the stomach and told her if she tells anyone they will throw her down the toilet.

So if I ask her how was school she looks side to side and changes subject saying “what's for lunch or some random saying like, "do you think it's going to rain today? I also say to her go out with your friends to cinema or swimming. But she says she's ok and spends her entire day at her room. she sometimes wets the bed at 15. God bless sophie.i really need help thanks.

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