My son, a Bully?!

Samantha - posted on 03/23/2012 ( 3 moms have responded )

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I think my five year old may be either be a victim of bullying, or he's turning into one, or maybe even both? I'm still sorta new to having a child in school (he's in kindergarten) So this is my question: Any advice on what I should do?? I'm a little scared about it, and I'm not too sure where to start. Google has helped NONE, (No, I do not expect Google to have all the answers.... just never seems to be able to help when it's important.. )

The reason I think what I do, is because in the past few weeks, he's become more and more aggressive towards his brother, (Past the point of comfortably calling it sibling rivalry) and tonight I found out that he's decided to try the aggression out on my five year old sister in law. When I say aggression, I mean being mean, hitting, pushing, screaming at, yelling, throwing things, bossing them around, behaviors that are NOT typical from him. (He's not perfect, but this is crazy to me) I'm trying really hard not to panic, but I see a lot of room for error on my part if I don't handle this the right way. Any tips, information or suggestions would be greatly appreciated. (Schools and the Doctors are closed for the weekend, so all I have for advice is Circle of Moms and family/friends between now and Monday when I can talk to his teacher about it.)



Thanks in advance!

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Michelle - posted on 03/24/2012

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This is normal 5 year old behavior, he has seen something at school or as you said had something done to him and he is bringing it home where he feels the most comfortable and using it there. Sit down have a talk with him about why he thinks its ok to hit or bite or whatever other things he is doing and let him know in no uncertain terms that it wont be tolerated. Use time outs or take things away and most of all dont lose your cool

Mandy - posted on 03/24/2012

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ok first... breath....dont panic



second..... maybe time out (1 minute for every year of like) or taking something off him for a day or 2 if you witness such behaviour? it is important that he knows this behaviour and aggressiveness is NOT appropriate.



talk to his teacher. it is a big adjustment to start school. also, maybe talk to the school counsellor? they might have some other suggestions.



it is possible that he is just copying behaviour he witnessed at school and needs to know it is never acceptable that he copys it. i often talk to my son who is 9 years old about how even if he sees someone doning the wrong thing it doesnt mean he should do it because he knows the right way to behave.



i also found haveing a list of rules on the wall where he could see helped lots. keep it simple, just basic things that are issues at that time, like no hitting, no yelling etc. i usually add a few positives as well like play nicely and be happy. also a rewards chart might help. you could start easy, if he gets through a day without being nasty to anyone, he gets a reward, then gradually increase it to 2 days, then 3 days etc. he is still only young, so i wouldnt go any longer than a few days between rewards. you could also add some other positive things like picking up his toys, or doing something nice for someone else.



Good luck!

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Rebelle - posted on 09/22/2013

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No this is NOT normal behavior! If you hit your child, then you have taught him that is a proper and acceptable form of punishment for not getting his way or what he wants. If not, your child is extremly stressed out about something more than starting school. Is he used to having these other children around? Does he feel like he's competing for your attention? Talk to him in a quiet non threatening place. Take him for ice cream or the park, just the two of you and try to find out what he's feeling, and he won't know himself, he's too young to identify most human feelings such as jealousy, frustration etc. so you are going to have to pay attention and not make him feel cornered. If he can't verbalize it, have him draw a few pictures of the feelings and have him explain the pictures to you. Also talk to a school counselor, he/she can be of great help to you if they are not too jaded to care. Talk to his teacher without him or other kids around. Get her thoughts. Do they use corporal punishment? How can you expect to teach a child not to hit when mad or frustrated if that is exactly what happens to him? Yes eventually you will win, but at the expense of his self esteem and confidence. You don't have to damage them to raise great kids. You do have to set limits and punishments appropriate for the behavior and you have to mean it and be consistent no matter how hard it is. Not hitting your child is a little more work for parents, but the pay off is huge. Your child learns to trust you instead of fearing you. They learn they can talk to you without fear of you over reacting or judging them and that becomes VERY important as they become teenagers. Your children will do the right thing because they don't want to disappoint or hurt you, they won't go behind your back because they are afraid of you. I've raised 5 this way. Everyone of them went to college and never once even had a detention at school. We respected them and they gave us respect in return. They still talk to us about everything (some things we'd rather not know sometimes!) the ones still at home (some are chosen family some are gifts God chose for us, but all are gifts from God to us. Beating you children is the lazy way to discipline.

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