During the fifth grade when Samantha was 10 years old, she was bullied by a male classmate. She remembers walking through the halls of her elementary school and hearing the bully call out these words:
“Why are you on this earth? You don’t deserve to be alive.”
The bullying followed her every day.
“I didn’t want to go to school because I knew he would be there. I was afraid,” says Samantha, now 12.
Weeks into the school year, the harassment and intimidation escalated and turned physical.
“It was usually mental [abuse], but at one point in fifth grade the bully came up to me, and he punched me on the back,” says Samantha quietly. This was the breaking point.
“I had enough,” says Samantha’s mother Karen. “The verbal and physical abuse needed to stop.” …
Imagine walking down the middle school hallway and someone insults you as you pass by.
Picture entering the school bathroom and watching as another student takes your backpack and dumps the contents on the floor.
Imagine being pushed by a classmate in the cafeteria or reading mean comments on social media.
These are common scenarios of a child being victimized by a bully.
According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, 3.2 million children report being bullied during the school year. It is also estimated a staggering 160,000 teenagers miss school every day because of the fear of being victimized.
When your child is being bullied, it hurts. Parents want to help their child end the abuse but are often uncertain how to go about it. Here is a parent’s guide to advocacy. …
The suicide of 12-year-old Rebecca Sedwick in September in the wake of repeated cyberbullying is a tragic and timely reminder of bullying’s consequences. October is National Bullying Prevention Month, which means schools across the U.S. are rolling out skits, posters and even apps to raise awareness and prevent bullying. However, the practice is pervasive; in 2009, one in five high school students admitted being bullied at school.
Yet, a recent study suggests that bullying prevention programs help bullies hone their harassment skills. Has this study delivered a knock-out blow to these efforts? …
Every September children are quickly integrated into a whole new peer group at school, and it’s not always easy. New classmates can mean new social issues that you and your children aren’t used to, including bullying.
Bullying is a very serious concern in schools all across the country. But it’s a term that means different things to different people—what’s bullying to one person may be seen as “kids being kids” to someone else—which can make it tricky to identify and put a stop to bullying at school.
To help parents better understand what bullying is, both from a medical and legal standpoint, I spoke with Peter Raffalli, MD, FAAP, director of Boston Children’s Hospital’s BACPAC (Bullying and Cyberbullying Prevention and Advocacy Collaborative). …