8 Influences On Kids Bullying Others
Influences on kids bullying other children can vary quite a bit. As a child I was bullied and did not understand why other children were bullying me. I only thought that the other kids were being mean and cruel and could not see the reasons for the actions they took against me. Is it wrong that they bullied me, sure it is. Can you and I learn something we might not already know about why children bully other children, yes we can.
We should always strive to understand or at the very least make the effort to remember to do so when it comes to a topic we are dealing with. Children, in my belief want love, security and to feel they are worthwhile. When one or all of those needs are not being met they may seek unhealthy ways of filling the void left in them. Being children their ability to seek healthy solutions to filling those voids can be problematic. As adults, it can be a challenge to find healthy solutions, as children even more so.
I wanted to learn more about the other side of bullying, bullies themselves and what possible reasons might lead them to choose to bully other children. By being aware it is my hope it will better help me personally deal with it better by treating both parties with respect instead of solely protecting the bullied child and shaming those children doing the bullying. Saying something is wrong in my opinion should be used as a last resort. In my opinion and experience children are very intelligent whether you believe me or not is entirely up to you. I remember children who bullied me being told to stop it and that it was wrong. Being sent to the principal’s office and given detention where they would sit at lunch hour doing nothing. I fail to see how this helps correct the underlying reasons and influences that help a child up choose to bully another in the first place.
Parents Who Are Not There
Reading online I learned that one of the reasons children bully others is due to one or both of their parents not being there for them physically, emotionally or mentally. Children have a lot of needs such as parents being physically present with them. Some parents might have to work away from home for extended periods of time which may be hard on children. If you were a child in such a situation or find that any other of the influences I will discuss here please share to help put more light on these influences.
Also parents may be physically present but not emotionally or mentally present while around their children. This can have negative impacts on children. Whichever situation a child finds himself in where parents are not present they may seek to bully other children to feel they are important and to receive attention even if it is negative from the absent parent.
Aggression In Home Life
Children who experience aggression in their home life with physical and emotionally violence from parents and/or siblings may look to bully other children to feel they have some sense of power over their lives. They may bully siblings as well.
I believe this is one of the main ideas of why bullies bully other children as shown in the media. It makes sense to me that a child might choose to bully another at school to help deal with the problems at home. If your home life is not in your opinion nurturing enough why not look to CHANGE your home culture? It is never to late and so worth it.
Kids Who Are Bullied
Some children who are bullied may in turn bully their peers that are easier targets than themselves. Despite being the target and feeling the pain of being bullied they do it to other children because it gives them a sense of being important, powerful and that they can control their situation in some way.
Personally I was bullied a few times by others who were bullied themselves. It is not a nice feeling being bullied period, but when getting bullied by another child who was also bullied themselves made me feel even worse than being bullied by a child who was just bullying me but not being bullied by someone else. I guess it was because I knew they also got bullied but were bullying me so that knocked my self-esteem down even further. Being bullied by these other children placed me at the lowest rung on the latter of my social network of kids at school.
I understand now though why they did it and hold no grudges. I just hope we as parents can look and understand how these situations occur and not put all the blame and guilt on the bully. It really does not solve anything as once the “punishment” is over the bullying for me at least continued in other less obvious forms.
Children in school want to be accepted by their peers or at least some of them. Without a social group most children feel vulnerable and open to being bullied by other children. As a result some children may choose due to GROUP THINK if other children in their social group are bullying others to do it themselves to remain part of the group. They may also encourage their peers to join in as well.
I experienced this in school with one group of kids I knew who bullied me. I wanted to be part of their group as well as another group that did not bully me but never really accepted me either. The group that bullied me would provide me sometimes with a sense of security but more often than not would target me with their bullying.
If I could do it again I would have asked to join activity clubs outside of school had my learning disabilities not been such an obstacle. A combination of factors played into me having a low self-esteem which even to this day I can struggle with. I did join one club in high school that allowed me to be in a place where no bullying was permitted at all. It was the only time I ever felt truly safe. Some kids who were bullies outside of the club were actually part of it which to some degree helped breakdown the bullying that had been occurring at that in my life. I believe group think can be overcome but it takes a strong force of good to establish a permanent change.
School Lack Of Policies
This one surprised me to read about but when schools lack policies and do not enforce them when they exist bullying can occur. I was surprised to read this because growing up there were always policies in place from elementary school through high school. I was not aware there are schools that lack them.
I can state though regardless of school policies against bullying children are ever creative in finding ways to bully others. So having policies is not enough on its own even if they are being enforced. As I have touched on I believe the deeper issues need to be addressed in order to remove bullying from schools and have school be about learning. A safe, nurturing environment at school will only be a good thing for all children.
Aggression At School
Bullying is also done at school because both girls and boys are aggressive with their peers. Girls do it using social aggression such as spreading rumors and verbally attacking other students. Boys due it using physical aggression to intimidate and impose their will on others. Both boys and girls gain a sense of power and improved social status with their peers. A lot of this goes on in their own worlds at school that may not always be obvious to teachers, helpers and parents to easily recognize.
Either way aggression like this can be very damaging to the self-esteem of children being bullied. Each situation will be different but creating situations for students who are bullies and being bullied to become united is one way I believe this could be overcome. I recall some activities my school did though to try to bring all children together but never found it had any lasting impact to create a permanent change. Do you have any ideas or suggestions on what can be done? Any ideas that all students could get behind and support as a united group? Would creating an obligatory program/course that all students have to participate in order to graduate be a solution? Helping the elderly? Caring for animals at a shelter? I would appreciate any and all ideas you have for my own situation.
Inadequate Supervision By Schools
There needs to be enough teachers, helpers and volunteer parents for all the classrooms, hallways, cafeteria and recess break area to ensure children are not being bullied. This is a tall task I must admit as schools do operate on a budget and parents must tend to earning a living outside of school themselves.
Children who bully though are very opportunistic and will find areas in the school where they can get away with bullying other students. Even if it is for a moment, they will do it.
What our children consume in the media whether it be on TV, in the movies, video games and on the internet can have violence, aggression and bullying all of which may give the message that bullying is ok to do. We need to know what are children are being exposed to in those media outlets so they do not receive the message it is ok to bully. Aside from that their is much content unsuitable for younger viewers.
If you have not already done so enable parental controls on your media devices so you know they will be safe. Also, limit the amount of time they are allowed to use them. Better yet be with them or near the room where they are using them to be able to verify and overrule what they decide to watch or play.
I wanted to explore and share with you today the possible influences on children bullying. I hope you have been able to take something away from this post. I do not see children who are bullies deserving of being labeled the black sheep and assigned all the blame. We need to work to understand the underlining reasons for their actions and strive to deal with it.
Better yet we should work to ELIMINATE bullying all together so all children can grow up happy, healthy and secure in the knowledge they are worthwhile.
Leave your thoughts and suggestions below on how you believe we can tackle bullying and I will get back as soon as possible.
Proud papa of two,