Putting an End to Bullying
The month of October is National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month, which unites thousands of schools, organizations, and communities across the country to identify ways to address bullying and hopefully stop it before it ever starts.
The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) defines bullying more technically as "any unwanted aggressive behavior(s) by another youth or group of youths who are not siblings or current dating partners that involves an observed or perceived power imbalance and is repeated multiple times or is highly likely to be repeated."
Bullying puts its victims at increased risk of depression, anxiety, sleep problems, and poor school adjustment. Bullying not only harms its victims, but impacts the perpetrators - who are at increased risk for substance abuse, academic and work problems, and violence later in life.
StopBullying.gov offers these warning signs that a child is being bullied. Please note that this list isn't all inclusive and that some children may not show obvious signs of being bullied.
• Unexplainable injuries
• Lost or destroyed clothing, books, electronics, or jewelry
• Frequent headaches or stomach aches, feeling sick or faking illness
• Changes in eating habits, like suddenly skipping meals or binge eating. Kids may come home from school hungry because they did not eat lunch.
• Difficulty sleeping or frequent nightmares
• Declining grades, loss of interest in schoolwork, or not wanting to go to school
• Sudden loss of friends or avoidance of social situations
• Feelings of helplessness or decreased self esteem
• Self-destructive behaviors such as running away from home, harming themselves, or talking about suicide
Bullying victims often don't seek help
If you were ever bullied or picked on growing up, you know how humiliating it is and the feelings of helplessness that it causes. These feelings can prevent kids from seeking help from adults, including their parents. A child who is bullied and feels helpless may want to reassert their own sense of control by trying to handle the issue on their own. They also may fear that adults will negatively judge them as weak. The low self-worth and sense of isolation that bullying frequently causes can make kids feel that no one cares about or understands their problems. Additionally, a bullied child may fear backlash by his or her attacker/s and peers if he or she seeks adult help.
It is therefore on parents / guardians to watch out for the signs of bullying, and to approach their children with the necessary sensitivity to figure out what is going on. Understand that for the child, home is their refuge: don't blame him or her for what is happening to them. You should take steps to nurture your child's self-esteem, like pointing out their positive attributes and talents, and educating them about bullies and bullying to put the problem in perspective. Teach your child not to be afraid to seek out adult help, and that in the end, it takes adult help to stop the bullying.
Stop Bullying Right Away! If you or someone you know is being affected by person-to-person or cyber-related bullying, please contact the LaGrange Park Police Department for assistance.
Residents are encouraged to drop off unused medications at the La Grange Park Police Department lobby on Saturday, October 28th from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. This event is made possible through assistance provided by the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Coalition for a Drug Free Lyons Township.
Wednesday, November 15, 2017
7:00 pm to 8:00 pm
Don't miss our popular Coffee with the Police series, which takes place Wednesday, November 15 at 7:00 p.m. Chief Rompa and staff will share information on current police efforts and take questions and concerns from residents in attendance. This event will be held at Plymouth Place, 315 N. La Grange Road.
Please remember October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month