What if my child is bullying others?

It can be very difficult to admit your child is bullying others. If you think your child may be bullying others, you need to talk with them and give them the opportunity to tell you what is happening. It is important that you explain that you still love him/her, but the behaviour is not acceptable.

You may need to start by looking at home life. Sometimes difficulties at home (e.g. family breakdown, domestic abuse, arguing) make it more likely that a child will bully others. Does your child recognise what bullying is and how harmful it can be to others? If they admit to bullying others, they will need your help to understand why they are doing it and how they can stop it.

Children bully for many reasons. It could be that they feel insecure and so picking on others makes them feel more ‘popular’. It could be that they are angry and upset about something so they are taking this out on someone else. It could be that peer pressure is making them bully even though they don’t want to. Or it could be that they simply do not understand the consequences of their behaviour. Whatever the reason, it is important that you try to find out why they are doing it. Then you can start helping to change their behaviour.

Make sure you:

  • Take bullying seriously
  • Teach children to respect everyone
  • Model good behaviour
  • Take an interest in your child’s social life
  • Encourage good behaviour

Further information can be found at:

Also see the where can I find support? page.