4 Things to Know About Kids Who Bully (and how to help them)

A recent study shows that 15% of kids between the ages of 10-17 kids bully others. 

Kids who bully don't fit any one profile.
Males are more likely involved in physical and verbal bullying.  Girls are more likely involved in social or psychological bullying.

Bullying begins showing up as early as preschool.  Kids who tend to blame others for their actions or who tend to make negative assumptions about others are more likely to engage in bullying, as are kids who have difficulty following rules or like to have things their own way, or who have friends who bully others.

Some are being bullied themselves.
6-7% of kids have both been bullied and have bullied others.  Kids who bully tend to have been subjected to more abusive treatment in their families.

Children who have less-involved parents are more likely to bully others, as are those who have siblings or parents who model or endorse aggressive behavior. 

Kids play a wide range of roles in bullying.
Some children assist those who are bullying, by encouraging the behavior or even joining in.  Others reinforce bullying by laughing or providing support for the children who are bullying.

Kids who engage in more-explicit forms of bullying (such as physical and verbal intimidation) tend, on average, to attain less education, to have more employment problems, to be more likely to drink heavily and use illicit drugs, and to have more police contact as adults. 

As Children's Ministry Leaders, we must teach that bullying is wrong and that we must respect others.
Early childhood offers an opportunity to start teaching children that bullying is wrong.  As children age, we must set consistent limits and show kids how to succeed without hurting others.

We must also be aware of children who are at risk of becoming involved in bullying, as a perpetrator, victim, or bystander.

Need more help with preventing bullying in your ministry?  Check out this link.