Backwards WFMW – How To Deal With Bullies?

This week is Backwards WFMW again over at Rocks In My Dryer, so instead of sharing a tip that has worked for me, I’m asking you for tips. 

I’ve taught and am teaching my children, no kicking, no pushing, no pinching, etc. and reinforce it regularly. Unfortunately they are faced with such kids now and then. If this  happens with hubby or I present, we’d warn the bullies. However we’ve come to realise that it happens sometimes when Hubby-jr’s (my four year old) in school. How should I teach him to defend himself and still remain honourable?

So far, when I’m present, I’ve been trying to teach him to be assertive. I tell him to face the “bully” and say, “don’t push me!” Or “don’t shout at me!” and leave the scene. He’s not very good at it as he’s a little delayed in social skills but I’m working on it.

How do you teach your kid to deal with bullies? How should they defend themselves when bullied? I would really appreciate any wisdom you’d like to share.

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8 Responses to “Backwards WFMW – How To Deal With Bullies?”

  1. Activities Coordinator Says:

    When I was five we lived next door to some truly awful people. They told us we were going to hell because we were Methodists (instead of their denomination). Nice, eh? Anyway, the younger boy of the family was about my age and was bully. He would run me over with his bicycle on the sidewalk in front of my house. My mother tried talking to his parents, to no avail. Finally, after I came home battered and bruised one time too many, she said, “Just push him down.” Imagine my shock. I had always been taught to turn the other cheek.
    So, the next time he came after me, I grabbed the handle bars of his bike and knocked him down. He went crying home to Mama. Whatever. We were going to hell anyway.
    I will never forget that day. I don’t think he will, either. He never tried to hurt me again.
    Sometimes, you have to stand up for yourself. It’s a shame, but there it is.

  2. Marcia Says:

    LOL at the previous comment.

    I’m a Christian but I don’t believe that turn the other cheek works for bullies. You have to stand up for yourself. 🙂

  3. Hollie Says:

    Here are the rules I teach my child 1. First do no harm, yet telll them loud and Clear Stop and Stop now that is not the way to treat anybody! and if that doesnt work 2. get adult help.

  4. Angela Says:

    I too am a Christian and we teach our children to use their words, like many of you. We also teach our children that if words don’t work to get an adult. However there have been times in recent past that my 5 year old, then 4, was tricked into drinking PEE (long story and a post from May 14th) and another time he was punched in the stomach, pushed down and jumped on.

    You all are right that you can’t treat a bully the same. So one night my hubby just told him that the next time those boys hit him or harmed him physically, to punch them in the nose. As much as we hated even verbalizing that to our 4 year old, it had to be done. He has had to do it ONE time since that day. I am not saying that it is the most honourable thing to do, or the most Chirst-like thing, but when you are a kid, and no one is there to help you……….

  5. Marlene Says:

    I’m a middle school teacher. Of course we want to teach our children to be good and morale, but with bullies the rules change a bit. Nice kids can really can taken by a bully FOR YEARS. Kids need to stand up to them because if they don’t, the bullying will continue and get worse.

    Try talking with your child’s teacher ASAP. Ask your child to tell the teacher ASAP as well. Bullying needs to be stopped ASAP.

    Or a quick shove will work. 🙂

  6. CanadianCarrie Says:

    Just this morning when I dropped my dd age 5 at kindergarten, I was waiting to talk to her teacher about something, I noticed a bit of bullying by a girl who is my dd’s best friend in school. I think I will try to watch more to see what is really happening. If I see it happening alot, I will most likely ask the teacher if she has noticed it, talk to my dd about it, what she should do, and if I feel the need, talk to her mother as well.

  7. Kathryn B. Says:

    I don’t have great suggestions for dealing with bullying that young (you have had some great replies though). We had bullying issues in Kindergarten (problems at the bus stop) and I taught my son to say “That’s not nice”, “Leave me alone” etc. When that didn’t work, we went to the principal for intervention and THAT did take care of it. The next year the bully problem was solved by the school counselor. Again, I gave my son some tools and when HE wanted to take care of it by himself (Yay, him!) I suggested maybe the counselor could help and she did! Good luck!

  8. marabeth Says:

    I have a problem, my children are very sweet and get along great with everyone but their are always issues with the boy next door. When he is in my house I listen to the way he bosses my kids around and he has done multiple things to one of my sons. He and his accomplice even pulled his pants down in front of everyone – 3 times!!! I think it can be enforced by the parents sometimes for their bully children to be “tough”. The parents themselves are bullies. Wish me luck confronting them.


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