Growing sunflowers from seed or running the spatuala around the inside of her great-grandmother’s baking bowl as she removes the remnants of banana bread or coffee cake, just two surefire ways, to raise her spirit from the clutches of anxiety! You too can find the sun within your clouds!
Today I realise that the Universe has a plan for us all. The reason behind this realisation is because today…
I brought home the beautiful print created for me by Philip Abang. Philip asked to take my words and use them as part of his project. I am so greatful for the beauty he has brought to my words. You can read how it came about here
I’m not good at identifying and setting goals. I’m more a ‘trust the Universe’ and a ‘let it happen’ type of person.The Universe is taking my little steps and reflecting them and more back to me. When I shared my first blog post I couldn’t have imagined that blogging would bring me to a much more positive place. A place where I’ve written over 300 posts some of which are part of a series on bullying and its impact on us as a family, with a focus on recreating a better life beyond bullying.When I started out I never thought about what time and a little blogging could open up to me.Now I know I only have to keep blogging, keep sharing and encouraging… the Universe will bring about the rest.
Start with a confident front, let your child see that you can handle this upsetting situation, even if underneath you are emotionally upset and probably unsure where to begin.
The first thing you can do is quip yourself with information, search the internet, empower yourself through learning. Remember these three words…”knowledge is power” and knowledge will ensure you are no longer stuck…
Write a list of things you can do, which could include…
1. Contact your child’s class teacher or the teacher your child feels they have a connection with and trust most. Initially make contact by phone or by letter, be discreet, limit your physical contact with the school as your presence may be observed by the bullies and cause repercussions for your child.
2. If the bullying persists, arrange an appointment with the school Principal, again be discreet as in point 1 above. Have a list or record of bullying events so that you communicate the details accurately and effectively.
3. Consult your General Practitioner for medical support. In Ireland you need a G.P., referral to access Counselling, Psychology or Psychiatric support.
In Ireland you can also…
4. Contact a member of the Board of Management, a member of the Parents Association (most schools have a Parents Association) or the National Parents Council. Read more about NPC here… http://www.npc.ie
Under the Education (Welfare) Act, 2000 Educational Welfare Officers (EWOs) of TUSLA, the Child and Family Agency work with young people and their families who are experiencing difficulty with school attendance. Their main priority is around the welfare of children and young people and ensuring that concerns and problems around attendance are addressed before attendance becomes a crisis issue. Read more here… https://www.tusla.ie/services/educational-welfare-services/service-strands/
If you are not getting the answers or support you need, schools in Ireland also have the support of NEPS; the National Educational Psychological Services.
NEPS psychologists work with both primary and post-primary schools and are concerned with learning, behaviour, social and emotional development. They work in partnership with teachers, parents and children in identifying educational needs. Read more about NEPS here…www.education.ie/en/Schools-Colleges/Services/National-Educational-Psychological-Service-NEPS-/NEPS-Home-Page.html
If your school does not inform you of the availability of this service, request that the NEPS Psychologist is contacted or contact them yourself as I did.
Your child is or has been bullied at school and you have found an opportunity to talk to them, making a written record of events as you discuss them, without being caught up in frustrating and emotionally upsetting arguments. Now pause to acknowledge the progress you have made, you’ve managed to… 6.Avoid the hook!
You’re now aware and can understand that the changes in behaviour you’ve seen are signs of bullying. Those signs probably included your child;
reducing their academic performance,
refusing to go to school,
lacking motivation, wanting to achieve goals but showing perfectionist traits, then appearing paralysed,
disappointed by not living up to the high standards they set themselves,
withdrawing into themselves,
being stressed, having emotional outbursts,
showing signs of anxiety, depression, OCD or specific phobias,
consuming excess alcohol, or maybe using drugs,
getting into trouble in school,
being charged with social disorder,
or engaging in self-harm
If you are like me,
you probably struggle to know what to do.
You are unsure of where to turn next.
You are probably paralysed like we were.
You probably struggled to even accept the situation.
You wanted to wave a magic wand and fix everything…
If any of the above resonates with you, it is very important that you are pro-active. Do not allow bullying to render you paralysed. Your child might not want you to speak up for fear of making the situation worse or been seen as ‘a grass’ or a ‘cry-baby’. You must be very discreet but you must seek out support to help you stand up and speak up to bullying!