How parents can help children deal with bullying

By Ontario Richardson – bio | email | Twitter

LAUREL,MS (WDAM) - Bullying, an age-old threat to your kids is now more than on the playground.  With texting and social media it has now spread into the cyber world.

Often kids cry out, but sometimes no one is listening. On Monday, 14 year old, Samantha Kelly of Michigan committed suicide by hanging.  Her mother, June Justice, said Samantha was taunted by students after accusing an 18 year classmate of rape.

Justice says "My daughter did not get any justice because of this and she ain't getting justice now."

Laurel Middle School National Board Certified counselor, Cindy Creel, says it is important for parents to know how to identify when there's a problem.

"It is always a situation when one individual takes the position of power over the other person, the victim who feels powerless."

She suggests parents should not encourage their children to fight back instead make the bully aware of his or her behavior.

Creel said "I tell parents to talk to their child, so they can have an understanding of what's going on.  Secondly, notify school officials so we know what's going on. And thirdly, they need to follow-up and make sure that after the school has acted on the information that the child has seen a difference in the bully's behavior."

Creel says "Most bullies are often unaware of the effects of their behavior and usually break down once they realize what they're doing."

Copyright 2010 WDAM. All rights reserved.