We all live in fear that our children will be bullied at school. Many of us have dealt with it already and it's devastating. Normally, once it's been reported, schools can deal with incidents and at home we can work on empowering our kids to stand up for themselves. But what if you don't even know there's a problem until it is too late? What if the bullying causes your child to completely withdraw from life, and nothing you do to try and help them works?
Isaac is a 16-year-old Brisbane boy who has refused to go to school for two years due to bullying. His mother is desperate for help. She says her son's anxiety has gotten worse and now barely leaves the house.
"It just started with him saying that he was feeling sick but then it went on to longer and longer periods between him going to school," his mother Anita told news.com.au.
"In hindsight I think I should have somehow managed to make him go but just couldn't."
The bullying began when Isaac was in Year 8. "Some boys picked him up and put him in the bin…and I think he found that really humiliating and another time they called him the 'Bogan from Logan'. I thought it was nothing but obviously it was to him because he still brings it up."
According to Kids Helpline, bullying is the fourth most common reason why children and young people seek help from children's help services. School-related bullying is one of the top four worries for children under 15.