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AbuDhabiMom
AbuDhabiMom asks:
Q:

My son has been bullied by the son of a friend of mine for years. She refuses to see her son's behavior. How can I protect my son from this boy?

My children have attended a K-12 American school overseas since kindergarten. For many years a boy in my son's grade has bullied him. The boys are now in 10th grade and the bullying has gotten worse. The bully's mom is a dear friend of mine, which has made this much harder to handle. Years ago I tried to talk to her about it, but she refused to see her son as we did and believed his lies. To keep the peace we stuffed it and continued to work with our son on ways to handle this kid. Now that the boys are older the bullying has taken on a more serious tone. I went to the school for help since my friend has never been willing to address this and now she feels betrayed. How can we manage this situation in way that is best for all?
In Topics: Teen issues, Bullying and teasing
> 60 days ago

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Expert

Houli
Mar 7, 2013
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What the Expert Says:

Bullying has received an ever increasing amount of recognition as this behavior seems to be growing across the country.  You should talk with your son's school officials for advice and if this is occurring at school they should be able to help.

If the problem becomes totally unacceptable, and is happening out of school, as a last resort you could talk with  someone in the law enforcement area for advice and help.

Bullying can result in those being bullied feeling so bad that things can spiral out of control.  Do not underestimate the impact of bullying on your child.  Seek help immeidately.

Good luck.

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Additional Answers (4)

kiwisweater
kiwisweater writes:
you should tell the childs mother that if she can not talk to her child then you cant be friends anymore. she does not seem like a true friend!
> 60 days ago

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Wayne Yankus
Wayne Yankus writes:
you did the right thing for your son by going to the school where most of the bullying allegedly takes place.  they should be aware.  Discuss this with your son as to how he feels this should conclude.  Reach out to the other parents--both mother and partner--that you are working in the best interest of your son and that you would hope that would not interfere with adult friendship.  However, if the boys continue to be together, supervise their time. I realize they are teens but you may need to keep the relationship "home" so that the bullying will diminish.

Best wishes. It is tough when you live in an expat community.

Wayne Yankus, MD, FAAP
expert panelist: pediatrics
> 60 days ago

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1stladijwright
1stladijwri... writes:
I think you've already done what a friend would've done by consulting her about the issue. A true friend would have handled the problem and not looked the other way while her son is bullying your son. I don't think you betrayed her,if anything she betrayed you. Your son is more important. He is your responsibility while he is in young. Although I don't think parents should intervene in all conflicts with their children as to allow them their growth and independence, this situation is entirely different. I would've have gone to the principle in a heartbeat. Forget her!++++#!!!
> 60 days ago

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keenay
keenay writes:
YEARS?  This child has been Bullying your child for YEARS??  This woman is obvioulsy not a true friend to allow this to happen.  Now that they are teenagers, of course it's going to get worse, because this behavior was not nipped in the bud years ago.  Going to the school was absolutly the right thing to do.  By trying to "keep the peace" you have chosen this "friend" over your child, in my opinion.  Now you must GET RID OF THIS SO CALLED FRIEND!  You and your son are the ones who should feel betrayed!
> 60 days ago

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