We’ve been talking about bullying this month here at SNKTR, and sadly, we’ll have to keep talking about it because there are people who just don’t get it. Most of what we’ve talked about has been related to older kids. We need to talk about preschoolers though, because it does happen even at that age.
It makes me sad to see it hapen, but preschooler’s behavior needs to be dealt with quickly. In my experience, there are two kinds of parents, not just moms. Some want to be protective and comforting, and the other type wants to go to war. You’ll have to find a delicate balance between those in order to get the problem dealt with and help your child feel secure too.
1. Talk About It. It’s important that you get to the bottom of what the bullying consists of and the only way to do this is to talk to your child about it. It is natural for your child to not want to talk about, especially if they feel you’re going to be mad or emotional about it. Therefore, when you talk to your child, remain calm and don’t let him see your true feelings about the situation. Reassure him that you aren’t mad at him, but that you want him to know that he can talk to you about anything and that this is something that mommy (or daddy) really needs to know about.
2. Listen. When your child begins to tell you what is going on, listen. Don’t interrupt your child, but listen until he or she is done. Then you can ask questions. Be sure to ask questions about your child’s feelings. Pay attention to the story, but focus on your child’s feelings when you are talking with him or her.
3. Go to the School. Whether your child is in a daycare or preschool, you need to go to whoever is in charge and tell them what is happening. Don’t be defensive or overbearing, but just let them know that your child is being bullied and then tell them the details that your child told you. This should prompt the teachers to be on the lookout for the problem.
4. Encourage Friendships. When a preschooler is being bullied, it’s natural for them to distance themselves from other kids. Try not to let this happen. Talk to the daycare providers or teachers and find out what kids are nice to your child and who he or she talks to the most. Then set up a play date with that child’s parents so the two can play outside of school. Bullies like to pick on children that aren’t as outgoing or don’t have as many friends, so when you encourage friendships with other kids your child sees everyday at daycare or school, the bullying may stop shortly thereafter. More importantly, it will keep your child interacting with other kids and feeling accepted.