Close up of girl sitting on staircase looking sad

It’s important to recognise bullying at home, so that you can address it and make sure your child is learning healthy and positive relationship skills. Learn more about the impact of home life, what to look out for, and how to model positive behaviours at home.

The impact of home life in bullying behaviour

A lot of the things our children learn about interacting with others comes from behaviour learnt at home. Our relationships are not always easy, and sometimes we may find ourselves behaving in ways that other people may find hurtful or intimidating.

Try to recognise factors that might lead to bullying behaviour. By calling out and addressing behaviour at home that might be exclusionary, controlling or hurtful, you will also demonstrate good conflict resolution for your child.

What to look out for

Look out for times when family members or friends are:

  • teasing people inside or outside the family
  • forcing people to do things they don’t want to (outside of normal parental rules and consequences)
  • excluding people from activities
  • gossiping or spreading rumours about people
  • taking frustrations or worries out on the people around them
  • trying to force people to adopt their point of view.

If some of these things are happening in your family home, it is a sign there is bully-like behaviour happening. Your child could be learning to bully, or they may find the behaviour hurtful or intimidating.

Questions to consider:

  • Is your child frequently exposed to arguments, conflicts or relationship problems at home?
  • What is your child watching? What does it demonstrate about resolving problems? Maybe you could talk about what behaviours should not be translated from the tv screen into real life.
  • Is your family respectful and accepting of differences? How do you live by those values at home?
  • Is there sibling bullying? This is common, and often linked with bullying at school. How you handle fights between siblings can help them learn to relate more constructively to peers at school.

Learn more about modelling positive behaviours so you child can learn positive ways of relating and communicating with others.

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