There’s been a lot of talk recently about bullying — how to prevent it, how to recognize it, how to heal from it. And much of the focus has been on schools. What happens in school to cause bullying? Why don’t schools do more to stop bullying?
Of course, schools aren’t entirely to blame. There is no doubt that parents play a role in the behavior of their kids. Now a new study provides proof.
The study, published in the journal “Child Abuse & Neglect,” shines a light on how parenting styles are linked to bullying behavior in kids.
The study found that children of overprotective parents are more likely to be bullied. Children of abusive or neglectful parents also seem to be targets. Least likely to be bullied are children whose parents develop clear rules about behavior, but are also supportive and involved, according to the study.
“Children need support, but some parents try to buffer their children from all negative experiences. In the process they prevent their children from learning ways of dealing with bullies and make them more vulnerable,” one of the review authors said.
Instead, it is important for parents to allow children to resolve some of their own conflicts and develop their own sense of independence and self-worth.