As a child, there are quite some challenges to face while growing up. Transitioning from childhood to teenage, and then adulthood comes with a lot of challenges. Of all the issues most children face while growing up, one common one is called bullying. Unfortunately, children of all ages go through bullying in school daily.

What does bullying mean? It is an unacceptable act of hurting and intimidating people that are considered weaker and vulnerable to attacks. Most students in Nigerian primary schools and secondary schools have been victims of bullying and a lot of cases have been reported to the school authority.

Nonetheless, even though bullying in schools in Nigeria is becoming rampant among students, it is still what it is and should never be condoned among students. Bullying in Nigerian schools should be frowned at because it hurts its victims.

How can school bullying stop?

An awareness campaign needs to be carried out and parents have a huge role to play. Bullying in secondary school or primary school is a problem for both public and private schools in Nigeria.

Equipping parents with the right information on how to spot bullies would help a lot in dealing with this menace.

Parents should be able to help their children on how to deal with bullies or at least share some comebacks for bullies with their children.

Our focus in this article is to help Nigerian parents identify and deal with bullies that are threats to their children's education, mental health, and general well-being.

Bullying in Schools
A school girl focusing on her studies in class | Photo Credit: Blaire Harmon on Unsplash
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How To Spot Different Types Of Bullies In A School Environment

Apart from knowing the different types of bullying present in schools - physical, sexual, verbal, cyberbullying, tribal, and emotional bullying, it is essential to also know the types of bullies.

While it could be subtle to identify the different types of bullies in a school environment, it would help parents a lot in providing useful tips to their children on how to deal with a bully.

Without wasting much time, the below are the kinds of bullies found in a school that can cause both physical, social, and mental health problems to children:

  • Victims of Bullies: Research shows that a bully has been bullied at least one time in his/her life. Out of anger of victimization, most victims of bullies look for weaker students or pupils to have revenge. This is very common in boarding schools as most junior students being bullied would want to retaliate against the ones below them in school.
  • Perpetual Bullies: In any school in Nigeria, there are some sets of students who believe they are the big boys and girls. Out of fear of victimization, most children in school tend to obey their commands. Going against their wishes may result in violence that may cause a physical, social, or mental health problem.
  • Serial Bullies: These are the types that parents should be more careful of in schools. These people are manipulative and pretentious. They can act nicely in front of teachers or parents, yet very problematic when no superior is at the scene. Serial bullies can bully their victims for months or years.
  • Social Bullies: A social bully tends to deprive his/her victim of relating with other people. They are skilled at using manipulative words to make you feel worthless and dejected. This set of people always causes mental health problems to their victims. They just want to stop you from making friends in school.
  • Unemotional Bullies: This is likely the most dangerous one but not very common in most schools in Nigeria. Some people just derive pleasure in hurting others and they hardly feel any sympathy for their victims. The actions of these guys are pure wickedness and no parent would want their children to experience these bullies.
  • Group Bullies: This behaviour is very common in most Nigerian schools. A group bully tends to be quiet and even look vulnerable when alone, but his/her strength is in numbers. Once they are with friends, they bring out their full energy to cause an awful experience for their victims.

Children who experience any of these types of bullies always tend to put up some certain behaviour. Bullying in schools always have consequences on its victim and the next subheading will cover this subject.

Stop Bullying in Nigerian Schools
A picture of two serial bullies in class | Photo credit: Ludi on Pixabay

What Are The Consequences Of Bullying Parents Should Be Aware Of?

Apart from knowing the types of bullying and types of bullies, parents should also know the negative effect of being bullied. Most parents don't pay too much attention to bullying because they don't know the consequences this unacceptable behaviour has on their children.

Knowing the consequences of bullying on students and pupils will make parents act fast and proffer solutions for the best comebacks for bullies.

The following are some of the consequences school bullying has on students and pupils:

  • Shyness
  • Anxiety
  • Depression
  • Loss of appetite
  • Difficulty in sleeping
  • Low self-esteem
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Lack of drive to do anything exciting
  • Difficulty in making new friends
  • Attempted suicide
  • Self-harm

Going through these consequences, one can see that they are very threatening to the life of a child. However, if parents are well-informed and prepared, they can prevent these consequences from affecting a child in his/her adult life.

School Bulling Advice
Picture of a father teaching his daughter some useful life's lessons | Photo Credit: CDC on Unsplash

Practical Steps And Advice Parents Should Follow To Deal With The Menace Of Bullying In Nigerian Schools

While a school is a place of education, other things place in a school environment - one of them is violence or bullying among students. As parents, you must protect your child from evil vices if you want them to get the best of life.

Therefore, it is your responsibility to address the issue of bullying in your child's life. You should know the types of bullying, types of bullies, the consequences of being bullied, as well as practical steps to take to deal with a bully.

Take time to study your child's behaviour to find out if there are any changes. Google is a place full of useful information. You can use Google to find out how to deal with a bully that is tormenting your child's life. Anyways, we have put together some useful tips for interventions on your child.

Take Your Time To Observe Your Child's Behaviour

Sending your kids to get an education in school is the responsibility of parents. Parents shouldn't just relax, thinking that the teachers will handle everything for their kids.

As a parent, you should observe your kids and check if there are any changes in their behaviour - loss of appetite, spending time alone, feeling shy, etc., are all symptoms that a child is going through a difficult situation.

Steer Clear Of Retaliation

There have been countless cases in Nigeria where parents tried to retaliate for their kids. However, this is not the best way to deal with bullying in school. Hate is never the best way to pay back a bully, and a child's privacy should be respected in cases like this.

Instead of retaliating, the best way to go about it is by finding a solution to put an end to the problem. 

Give Your Child The Necessary Support

It is a common thing for some Nigerian parents to be angry and embarrassed, knowing that their kids are been bullied in school. Some parents don't even like to discuss the problem because they feel it's a slap on their face. Nevertheless, while you might feel embarrassed, you should understand that your child bears the brunt of it all.

Therefore, if you care so much about your kids, it would be only wise to discuss the issue and provide the necessary help to save your kids from awful situations. Ask your kids questions and listen to them attentively to understand their pain.

At first, you may view it as a personal failure if your child is being bullied by others at school, and you may not feel comfortable talking about the subject with them. However, it would help if know that it's not about your comfort but the comfort of your kid.

Being a supportive parent would assure your kids of getting help from you in the future.

Work On Your Child's Self-esteem

One of the consequences of bullying is destroying the self-esteem of a child. With low self-esteem, it is easy for a kid to feel unloved and worthless. To help your kids to remain resolute, it is the responsibility of a parent to keep reminding his/her children what they are good at.

Let your kids engage in activities they are good at and pour out praises on them whenever they do something nice. Also, let them take part in group activities because it is a good way to build social skills. 

Rounding off this article, we will advise parents to stick to these guides and work with them for the betterment of their children's lives. Nigerian bullying another Nigerian is getting too common and the problem needs to be addressed as soon as possible.

 

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Justin

A seasoned writer with a knack for various niches. As a physics graduate, I enjoy carrying out detailed research on a particular topic before drafting up an eye-catching and engaging article.