Being bullied can be one of the most traumatic experiences children and teenagers go through. The challenge for parents is wanting to protect their child without making the situation worse, and while helping their child learn to deal with the conflict themselves.
Knowing where the line is – between interfering (possibly making matters worse and causing the child increased distress) and not stepping in at all, leaving the child to “sink or swim” – is a massive dilemma for many parents whose child is being bullied at school.
What are the Options?
What are the options for a child who is being bullied?
Report the Bully
Most victims of bullying are convinced to keep quiet about it. There is a stigma against speaking up – and the threat of the bullying becoming worse. For this reason, many parents and teachers are unaware of incidents of bullying.
Stand Up to the Bully
This is not always possible – particularly when the bully is physically bigger or stronger than the victim; or when there is more than one bully. However, even when it would be physically possible to stand up to the bully, the stress response in many victims causes them to go into a state where they freeze, and are unable to realize the options they may have.
For most victims of bullying, neither of these is a viable option.
What are the options for the parents of the child being bullied?
Speak to the School or Confront the Parents of the Bully
This is the instinct many parents have; however, depending on the circumstances, the individuals involved, and the systems in place for dealing with bullying, this can make the situation even worse for the child.
There’s a possibility that the child could experience an increase in the bullying in retribution for reporting it. This is one of the reasons many victims of bullying don’t tell their parents or teachers about it.
This is even more significant when the bully is a teacher or another person in authority.
Stay Out of the Situation, and Allow the Child to Learn to Handle it as a Life Lesson
Although this may seem like a good idea to some parents, the problem is – there is no way of knowing how much damage may be done. Bearing in mind every experience is interpreted by the subconscious, and the meanings filed as proof of how the world works – and that there is no guarantee the child will find an effective way to deal with the bully – there is a significant risk that the child being bullied will develop issues, beliefs and patterns that will affect the rest of his life in a detrimental way.
The Effects of Bullying
The effect of bullying is not about the experience in the moment. It’s not about the torment during the events themselves; it is about the effects on the subconscious – it’s about the way the brain is wired through every experience. Just as is the case with all experiences, the experience of being bullied will be interpreted by the subconscious, and given meaning.
What this meaning is will depend on the child’s existing data – the information that is already filed inside his subconscious based on his life experiences to date. And this meaning will become part of his ongoing belief system for his future – into his adult life.
Eric was bullied in school. The experience was emotionally painful. His subconscious, referring to the data it already contained from his previous life experiences, caused his body to go into an emergency stress state – with stress chemicals coursing through his body.
He felt frightened and extremely hurt. Apart from the way he felt during the actual bullying, in between the incidents his body remained in a constant state of stress and “fight, freeze or flight” – causing problems in all areas of his life.
This affected his ability to absorb and process information in his studies; it affected his ability to concentrate and focus in class; it affected his relationships with others, his ability to communicate, and his cognitive thinking. This will have a powerful knock-on effect on the rest of his life.
It affects his self-image, his confidence, and everything else – he will make different choices, decisions, take different actions, and communicate differently to the way he would if he hadn’t had that experience of being bullied.
How to Help Your Child Deal with Being Bullied
Although it is important to use the proper channels that are in place for taking any action regarding the bullying, there is something else you can do to help your child to empower himself.
The child (just like everyone else) cannot do anything to make someone else change without their cooperation. If the bully chooses to not change, there is nothing your child can do to make him change.
However, there is something your child can do to change his own experience of the bullying.
What Creates Our Experiences?
Contrary to what appears to be, our experiences don’t come from people, circumstances and events outside ourselves; they come from how we feel inside ourselves. Something happens; the subconscious refers to the records it holds, and then prompts the brain to trigger chemical responses in the body according to those records – which causes the emotional reactions.
Here’s a real-life example:
The names of the boys have been changed, but the rest of the details are accurate.
Two 7-year-old boys were being bullied by an older boy, who used to push them around every time he saw them. One boy, Andrew, would get upset – it was natural and instinctive to him (and completely understandable of course). The second boy, Steve, dismissed the incident with (using one of the very few English phrases he knew) “Cut it out!” in a dismissive, disinterested tone, as if talking to an annoying sibling, and carried on with what he was doing.
The pushing continued a little after that, each time the older boy saw
them; and both boys reacted in the same way each time. The bully
eventually left Steve alone and only focused on Andrew – at which point, Andrew’s parents found out about it and put a stop to it through the school. Steve’s parents only found out about it much later, in passing.
The Most Important Key
It wasn’t the fact that they ACTED differently that made the difference to their experience; it was the fact that they FELT differently. Whether or not the bully continued with his behavior, each boy FELT different. One boy suffered; the other didn’t.
Now, of course, each boy was just doing what came naturally to him – neither had a plan or a strategy – and that is the key to the key! What made the difference in the way each boy automatically and naturally felt? Each boy had different subconscious resources.
Andrew’s resources provided the information – the proof from data that his subconscious had accumulated to date – that he was under attack.
This data provided the information to his subconscious that he was being bullied; that his life was at stake; and that the only response was to go into fight, freeze or flight. And he responded accordingly.
Steve’s resources (again, based on his unique life experiences to date) provided his subconscious with the information that this was a stupid, annoying, but irrelevant event – someone who was trying to be funny, but wasn’t succeeding very well. And he responded accordingly.
Same event, same bully, different experiences. It’s important to bear in mind, this is not about blame, it’s about empowerment. A child (and most adults) just doesn’t know they can change their experience. The victim of a bully feels helpless, hopeless, and horrible. You can completely change a child’s path by sharing with him the way in which he can empower himself to free himself from that suffering – without being reliant on the bully changing his behavior (which, let’s face it, is a much more difficult challenge).
Naturally, the bullies need to be addressed as well – and they need the same tools to change whatever is inside them, causing their behavior. But in the meantime, the victims do not need to wait for that – there is a way they can free themselves rather than continuing to suffer – once they know about it of course.
First, read the following to gain a deeper understanding on how the mind works and how it affects the body: The REAL Cause of All Your Problems and How to Change Your Reality. Then, ask your child to think of a happy memory – it needn’t even be a real memory, it could be a fantasy.
If he’s struggling to think of something, make some suggestions – perhaps a fun family holiday, or a hobby he loves, or a place he would love to go to. Ask him to take a deep breath, close his eyes, and go to that memory. Ask him to make the feeling stronger – just as if he were really there. Hold his wrist, have him take a deep breath, blow it out, and say “Peace”.
Next, ask your child to think of something that bothers him (not necessarily the bullying – it’s best not to specify, and to let him choose whatever is bothering him in that moment). Tell him that he doesn’t need to tell you what it is. All he needs to do is think about it in his mind, and notice how he knows that it bothers him – where he feels it in his body.
Then, use the process in The FasterEFT Technique – Step-by-Step to either tap on him, or to tap on yourself and have him copy you. As you tap, have him repeat the phrases out loud.
Ask him to go back to his happy memory, and then back to the thing that was bothering him. Ask him to notice how it’s changed. Have him notice what’s still there, and then tap again. Keep repeating the process until he is no longer bothered by it. Then, ask him to think of something he would rather have in place of that thing, and ask him to imagine it as if it’s real. Have him repeat this three times, hold his wrist, ask him to take a deep breath, blow it out, and say “Peace”.
You can point out to him that he was able to change how he felt about the thing that bothered him – without even needing to tell you about it. Then, go through the process again with something else (he may tell you what it is, or not), and make sure he knows how to use the technique himself.
Show him how to do Mental Tapping so that he can use it in the moment whenever he doesn’t feel good and there are other people around.
The most valuable part about sharing this technique with your child is: Not only will he be able to reduce his stress and anxiety as he goes through challenges now, in his childhood; it will give him the ability to change his experience in all areas of his life into adulthood. It will also give him different references from which to live life.
Instead of containing records that he is unworthy, the world is a dangerous place, his subconscious will contain records that he is worthy, and that he has the power to change his life experiences. This will have a knock-on effect on the choices and decisions he makes and the actions he takes – which will in turn give him different results in life.
For more information on how and why FasterEFT works, visit: The FasterEFT System.
To watch videos of FasterEFT visit The FasterEFT YouTube Channel.
Article by: Robert G. Smith