My son is best friends with a boy who lives on the same road as us, they have been friends for a few years now. His friend has to be number one at everything and puts ben down to make himself feel better. He is not nice to ben at school and will not play with him and hits him, i sorted the hitting out but now he tells other kids to hit ben and to call him names and not play with him and now he is doing the same with other kids on the road but he is also nice to ben when its just the two of them. My child behaviour has got really bad at home and he feels like everyone hates him. I have spoken to his mum about a few things but i think she thinks thats just boys being boys . I feel like we will have to move to get away from him and change schools as ben still plays with him even if is a bad friend for him
You did not mention the age of your son and his friend, but assuming they are in elementary school, you are doing the right thing by trying to get your son help now. Since some of the bullying is happening at school, please talk to your school counselor or school social worker about the situation. If you don’t see an improvement, go to the principal. If nothing changes, take it to the school administration or superintendant. You need to talk to someone who will take your son’s situation seriously.
Does your son have opportunities to make friends in other places like church or while involved in other positive activities such as scouts or sports? Hopefully over time he will realize that not all friends are mean and that he will choose to be with kids who are nice to him.
It's good that you have talked with the boy's mother about your observations. Hopefully she will come to see that her son's behaviors are not healthy and she will then take responsibility. The problem is if he continues to get away with treating others badly and is not held accountable, he will get more and more bold and the bullying can get more and more severe. If a teacher has not yet talked to her about her son's behaviors, this needs to happen soon. You can also suggest this to the school counselors and/or administrators.
There are books available to help your son identify his feelings and understand that he does not have to play with someone who hurts him. Our website: www.boystownpress.org carries books about bullying for parents and kids. One in particular which may help you and your son is: "Don't Pick On Me", by Susan Elkov Green.
Please feel free to contact our toll-free Hotline to discuss this situation or any parenting concern you may have. Our crisis counselors are available 24 hours every day to listen and support parents and children of all ages.
Take care and best wishes to you and your son!
Cynthia, Crisis Counselor
Boys Town National Hotline
Moving is not the answer. Bullying is everywhere in the USA and he'll just get bullied at another school. First, this is NOT a best friend. Best friends do not hit and call names. Explain that to Ben. Give Ben WORDS to use when this other child bullies him - such as "If you were really a NICE boy you would not treat me like this. I only want to be friends with people who treat others in a nice way and you do not! I will not be your friend because you are not nice, and if you continue to hit me I will tell on you and get you in trouble." Have a police officer go to the boys house and tell him that hitting is ASSAULT and that Ben could actually have the kid get into BIG trouble for assault. I do not recommend Ben hit back - yet. Instead, also enroll your child in a self defense class so that if something sometime happens then Ben can physically defend himself. Also a martial arts class will give Ben confidence as well.