Bullying is a problem which is as old as time. All the schools in Ballymena have policies in place to tackle bullying in school and they are also evolving to include new things such as cyber bullying.
Ultimately bullies and those being bullied need help. No one wants any child or teenager to ever feel like they don’t want to got to school because of how other people treat them.
Bullying is a major theme in the Ballymena Today book club book Big Little Lies. The book focuses on a bunch of parents who have children in the same kindergarten class. Even at that young age we read a story of a girl getting hurt and being too scared to tell the teacher who did it. Such a sad but realistic storyline.
If you are worried someone you care about it being bullied there are lots of resources and help available.
NSPCC have share the following advice for grown ups who are trying to help someone who is being bullied.
It can be hard for adults, including parents, to know whether or not a child is being bullied. A child might not tell anyone because they’re scared the bullying will get worse. They might think that they deserve to be bullied, or that it’s their fault.
You can’t always see the signs of bullying. And no one sign indicates for certain that a child’s being bullied. But you should look out for:
- belongings getting “lost” or damaged
- physical injuries such as unexplained bruises
- being afraid to go to school, being mysteriously ‘ill’ each morning, or skipping school
- not doing as well at school
- asking for, or stealing, money (to give to a bully)
- being nervous, losing confidence, or becoming distressed and withdrawn
- problems with eating or sleeping
- bullying others.
For more advice and help for NSPCC please click here.
Look out for Bullying – Ballymena Today
At the moment lots of 11 year olds in Ballymena have just found out their transfer test results. This determines their choice of secondary school and can be the cause of tension and stress. It is also a pressure point which could lead to upset and potential bullying – particularly if one friend has been left out, or a group have decided to pick on someone who maybe has done better than they have.
Also we know that bullying doesn’t stop being a problem just because you grow up. In Big Little Lies the author cleverly uses incident in the kindergarten to mirror the petty disputes which have festered between the grown up. Adult bullying can be debilitating – for more advice we want to refer you to the NHS website which has lots of help.