I don’t know the best advice. I just know what my response was yesterday. My oldest son, Kristof is 10 years old now. He hasn’t really got teased so far. Of course he had some conflicts, but no more than 5 in the last 5 years. He unfortunately doesn’t have special friends in his class, I would say that he is someone whose friend is everybody and nobody at the same time… 🙁 He never hurts anyone, unlike his classmates, especially the boys, and that’s why he couldn’t really make real friendship with boys in the class. Most of the time he’s playing with the girls, because they are far less wild.
From this September somehow Kristof has more conflicts, like there is one almost every week, unfortunately. I think he is getting teased because he is too good, and children don’t like those children who study and behave well. I think they entered the age in which it’s just not trendy to study and behave well. He goes to an English bilingual class, because we thought that this should be the best for him, since the children in the class were selected by teachers. Despite the selection it soon turned out that their behavior is quite bad, their teachers also complain about it regularly.
Back to the point, yesterday Kristof told me that it was bad for him, because he was teased by one of his classmates. It’s so hard…. I know that I can’t protect my children from everything, yet it’s so hard to see when they get hurt and upset 🙁 So I listened to him and then I told him, that these children hurt him and also other children because they miss something from their lives. Or because they also got hurt, or just because they don’t get attention from their parents. So I told him that I know that he doesn’t understand why he is teased, but try to imagine that it could be very bad for those children, since they are compensating themselves by getting attention with teasing others. I also told him that actually we should feel sorry for these kids…. My son started to smile, and said that next time he would say I feel sorry for you… I told him that this can be a solution, because then they get puzzled. We also agreed on another, possibly better solution, that he would ask the teaser something like this: ‘Have I ever teased or hurt you?’ And if the teaser doesn’t stop it, he will just walk away. Also, we figured it out that he would imagine a shield in meditation which protects him, and so he won’t be teased, or even if he gets teased he won’t care about it.
There was another thought that I told him (actually I told them already, when they got hurt by other children). I told my boys that they are older souls and wise enough not to hurt other kids, while those children who hurt them must be young, immature souls. They like this approach very much 🙂
These were the things that we agreed on. He calmed down and actually he got in a good mood again.
So how can you help your child when he/she is teased? Here are my recommendations:
- The most important thing is to listen to him/her, and pay full attention, so he/she can feel that you don’t underestimate his/her problem.
- Don’t say something like: ‘Don’t care about it’, because if someone says something bad to you, you also care about it. Of course it’s good to let it go, but you have to find a solution how to let it go…
- I think that it is very important to explain that these children do these things because they don’t get attention. It helps your child to understand why it is happening. And maybe the child’s anger or bad mood is also eased with this explanation.
- Give a solution: talk it over what he/she can answer, like he/she can make a joke of the teasing, or ask ‘Have I ever teased you’? Or just agree with the teaser. For example, I told Kristof, that when he gets teased because he can’t run so fast, he can say, ‘Yes that’s true, I can’t run so fast, but you can run fast, right’? Kristof liked this version also. That also puzzles the teaser a bit.
- And in the end the most important thing is to give a big hug for your loved kid 🙂