It has to be a pretty sobering revelation when you realize that your child is a bully.
I’m sure parents are shocked, horrified, and outraged when they learn that their precious son or daughter is the kid terrorizing other youngsters on the playground, in class, on the bus, and in the hallways.
But how do they react when they get that news…?
Take a look at these stories from parents on AskReddit who had to find out that their children were the ones doing the bullying.
1. That’s bad.
“So my our oldest got into an “emo” group at school. But our daughter is missing a lot of normal social abilities. She was always really bossy and had trouble keeping friend When all the emo girls at school were scratching themselves with paper clips, my daughter would join the fun by saying she wanted to die too.
And would tell them how she cuts her legs open and stuff (but lied, she faints at ANY gore in movies. Legit faints). In fact once I cut my finger open working on my fish tank stand… She turned the corner, saw the blood, and she hit the floor.
So she goes to one of her NON-emo friends, and tells the emo suicide stuff to him (her friend). He, NOT being an Emo, FREAKED OUT and told a teacher. Our daughter was called to see the school counselor, and dragged an Emo friend down with her.
With an emo friend and. NON emo friend in the room, when the counselor asked why she wants to kill herself…. She makes up HORRIBLE lies about things that happen at home. Obviously, CPS visits our house later that day.
I’m f*cking P*SSED now. Stupidly, I’m more mad at the school for not contacting us first. I demand they separate my daughter from the emo kids. The school told the emo kid’s parents, they supposedly punished their kids for the paper clip scratches. They hate my daughter now.
SO… They SUPPOSEDLY start bullying her. I reach out to the principle, and demand she stops the bullying immediately. The emos supposedly kept bullying her. So I contacted the school district leaders to do something about the principal. They CC’d her in an email and began an investigation.
Meanwhile my daughter, having lost her emo friends, becomes ANGRY at her NON emo friend who (caringly) told on her.
******** How my daughter bullied*******
My daughter forms a FULL squad of like 10+ random kids, and verbally assaults her NON emo friend all day. Then after school, she approaches him with her posse, they corner him, and threaten to kill him. As you guessed, the principal found out immediately. I have NEVER been more humiliated in my life! And this hurt the ongoing CPS investigation. CPS began questioning my neighbors, weekly visits to our other 2 kid’s school to check for bruising, etc.
******** My family today, 3 yrs after her bully phase ********
To this day, our oldest (now 14 yrs old) has NO privileges. No cell phone. We choose what friends she sees or hangs out with, etc.
A year ago we found out she was trying the emo group out again and threatened her with homeschool. Well covid happened and now she’s homeschooled anyway
I take bullying VERY seriously in my home. And my kid brought great shame to my family.
The CPS case eventually ended after my daughter confessed she was lying about everything, and we put her in counseling. We’re basically left with nothing but shame…
It sucks bad. I have never cried so hard in my life (I’m a man btw), as I did when CPS was investigating me. The thought of losing our 2 younger children to CPS made me feel more helpless than if I was buried alive.”
“My daughter was in 7th grade and her entire table harassed a young girl until the poor child refused to come to school.
When the administration showed us the complaint from the girl’s parents, my daughter admitted to being a willing participant to be accepted by this toxic peer group. I asked her how long this had gone on, and it turned out to be almost 4 months.
I took her cell phone away for the same amount of time and didn’t want to hear squat about the other girls. It was hell on her. I also made her apologize.
The next year she “divorced” herself from this peer group and made new friends. They tried to turn on her too but she’d have none of it.”
3. Caught it early.
“I was lucky to catch it early.
I talked to him at first, but it didn’t seem to get through. So I took it to the next level, he came home from school one day and I started bullying him. I kept it up for about a week until he broke down and asked why I was being so mean.
Long story short, he had his “oohhhhh, right” moment. Now he’s one of the most well liked and behaved kids at his school.
The whole taste of your own medicine thing seems to work rather well.”
4. A good ending.
“My 4 year old daughter and her friend started bullying a boy from another class. She told me about it, like it was a fun game they had discovered. I explained how the boy probably had a different experience.
She had a hard time processing because she really likes her friend and looks up to him, but I kind of got through to her.
I told her teacher but I didn’t have a lot of faith she would handle it correctly, so I also approached the bullied boy’s teacher.
The teacher just looked at me baffled: “Dorian is really not the type of kid to pick on kids. I’ll pay more attention but…” I had to interrupt her there.
“No ma’am, he is not bullying my daughter. My daughter is bullying him, together with her friend.”
She had that “processing, processing, does not compute” stare for a few seconds (I guess not many parents call out their kids sh*tty behavior) but realized what was going on. So I explained I took it very seriously and we wanted to nip this sh*t in the bud.
She was also my daughter’s teacher the previous year so they had a good bond and she was able to really get through to her. I was so grateful!”
5. My kid…
“My kid was a bully for a very brief time in her life, and by very, I mean put an end to it immediately.
It was lost on me because I always viewed my kid in a positive light and always tried teaching her right from wrong and to always help others. Out of the blue, I get a call from her teacher who informed me of a situation my daughter was apart of.
After the call, I cried. To be vague, she did not instigate the taunting, but was in a small group that mocked someone of special needs crying. After a passionate *ss-whooping, we all calmed down to explain in every way why it was bad, even if you are not the one initiating the act. The discussion lasted a whole day and some of our talking point covered:
That little group of friends that got you in trouble are NOT your friend, just dumb *ss kids that you won’t even care to remember when you get older.
Never be a follower. Because why? They will get you in deep sh*t like this.
You were bullied before too. Do you remember how it felt? Well now you helped someone feel the same way.
We always expected and taught you to, not only stand up for yourself, but for others as well. You let it happen when you could have stopped it.
That person you mocked or bullied could have been your best friend if you would have given them a chance. You never know.
That person you mocked or bullied, you don’t know what they are going through in life and your actions could have made it worse. There are kids, as young as 7 years old, committing suicide because of bullying.
Imagine how their parents are feeling helpless knowing their child is being bullied.
Every action you do has effects on you and people around you.
Know that we are extremely disappointed. The good image we had of you has been damaged and we can never see you the same way again. We expected better and you have failed, not only us, but yourself.
We need to come up with a solution to fix this problem now, and to work out a way so this does not happen again. You can start by making amends with who you bullied and to stop hanging out with bad influences.”
“My youngest niece was a bully in kindergarten and first grade. My brother spoiled her and allowed her to harass her two older siblings without consequence. My sister-in-law was battling cancer and did not have the energy to corral her daughter AND her husband.
Once my sister-in-law was declared cancer free, they came up to visit, and my niece made a beeline for my elderly cat. Said cat had all of his claws and took no bullsh*t from anyone. I warned her that she could pet him, but he wouldn’t tolerate being manhandled or harassed. If he scratched her, it was on her, not him.
Sure enough, she yanked my cat’s tail, and he yowled, whirled around, and got the back of her hand real good. She raised her hand to hit him, but I grabbed her wrist before she could swing.
My brother threw a fit about it, but my sister-in-law told him to shut it, lectured my niece about harming animals, and from then on proceeded to crack down on the bad behavior.
Last I heard, my nice is much better behaved now, and the reports about bullying from school have stopped. Hopefully, it sticks as she grows.”
“I kept getting called to the school for my son getting in fights. It was over and over. It didn’t take long to notice a pattern. My son had been hit hard by his dad earlier in the school year and we got a restraining order against him.
I got him into therapy and got him on medication for his ADHD for a short time, and we tried to be as patient and loving as possible while still grounding him for days or a week when he punched someone or took a knife to school.
He’s doing much better now and has grown up a lot and developed a great relationship with his step dad. So In spite of the damaging things he’s been through I feel very optimistic for him. We also switched schools and he got a male teacher with ADHD which helped.”
8. Sit him down.
“When my son was 4 I got full custody and at school he kept getting in trouble for hitting kids so I showed him videos of kids on YouTube talking about how getting bullied hurts their feelings and he was in tears.
Hasn’t bullied anyone since and he’s 8 now.”
9. A rough year.
“When my daughter was in 5th grade, she had some friends over. They were gossiping about a lot of kids in school. We shut that down and said that they weren’t there to talk badly about people, they were there to play. When the kids left, we had a discussion with our daughter about being nice.
We still heard some mean talk from our daughter, so my husband decided to show her Mean Girls one night while I was at work. He had a conversation with her about why this isn’t how you want to be. We thought we were good.
A few weeks later, I was volunteering at the school. The principal asked to speak with me. She and the vice principal sat me down and showed me a pink notebook. Yeah, apparently the lesson that my kid learned from Mean Girls was how to write a burn book. I couldn’t believe what was written in this book. Words I didn’t even realize my kid knew.
5th grade was a rough year. We essentially had to shut down her friendships with certain people because they weren’t good influences on our daughter, and vice versa.
For the most part, things are better now, 3 years later. She still slips into trying to gang with these other girls, and she has been punished severely. I think she’s finally realized that it’s better to have a phone with restrictions versus no phone at all.
She has done counseling with a therapist and we’re working on our relationship with her overall. I dont think she wants to be a mean kid, but she is very easily influenced.
She has a need to be liked by everyone, no matter what. That’s a very hard thing to break her of.”
10. Story from a bully.
“My parents knew I was trouble since the beginning of school but never really gave me much except a slap on the wrist.
The final straw was when I was in 4th grade. My dad got called in to the school after the principal told him a special education needs kid refused to come to school because I’ve been bullying him so much.
I got a real good beating then, and my parents were so ashamed they decided to transfer schools. Lo and behold they chose a french immersion school as my next school.
Without knowing a single word in French, I became shy and introverted at the new school just enough to be no longer a complete jack*ss.”
11. The wrestling coach.
“I coached a high school wrestling team in my late 20s. One of my wrestlers who came from a wealthy family made fun of an overweight junior varsity kid on another team before the match started.
Wrestling takes a ton of confidence and for a kid who clearly knows he is not in shape to put on a singlet and go out there and compete takes a lot of guts. My wrestler’s comments immediately revolted me. I pulled him aside and told him that he just embarrassed me, the team, and himself.
I told him that I was ashamed that he represented us and that he would not wrestle for us in a match ever again until he apologizes to the other kid AND his parents who were sitting right there and clearly overheard it because I could see the reactions on their faces.
I was a volunteer coach at the time (I was stationed in this town for the Navy). I couldn’t really be punished or held accountable by the school (other than being let go) since I was categorized as a volunteer and not an employee. I basically coached for fun and to keep in shape since I loved the sport.
I was known to be the more aggressive, “cool” coach because of my age. I only mention this because I knew my role in the staff would set an example among the other kids and this particular wrestler would take it to heart hard. It did. I also knew that the other parents really liked and respected me because I was honest and real with their kids.
This was a majority blue collar town and I think they appreciated that. My wrestler apologized immediately. I gave him the cold shoulder for awhile afterwards until we had a talk about what it means to be an adult and how to treat others.”
12. They ignored it…
“My sister was a bully. She bullied me and my brother and also kids in school.
My parents ignored it.
I think they were a little afraid of her.”
13. The nephew.
“My nephew’s a bully. I saw it coming though. My Sister’s non-existent in his life. He and my brother in law are separated from my sister.
Honestly she’s a piece of work. Most of the family has turned their backs on her because she compulsively lies and treats everyone like they’re not good enough.
She slapped me in the face during Thanksgiving because I stepped out to speak to my then girlfriend who was in a pysch facility after threatening to kill herself. She said I was being selfish and needed to spend time with the family not on my phone.
Naturally my nephew picked up on this behavior while she still at least tried to act like a mother. Recently found out he punched a kid in the face and broke his nose.
It’s awful to hear about because the whole family is super supportive of my brother in law and we know my nephew has some developmental issues because he was a born about 2 months early and had to be incubated.
Anyways he’s 6 or 7 now and starting to show these pretty serious signs anger. I haven’t been in the area I moved almost a state away for work though and haven’t been able to be part of my nephews life in awhile which is a bummer. I just hope my Brother in Law is managing.”
Now we want to hear from you.
Have you ever had any experiences with bullying?
If so, please talk to us in the comments.
We look forward to hearing from you.