Bullying is quite dangerous. Not only can it have a physical impact on the child facing it, but it can send them on a downward spiral that causes them to question themselves and even contemplate suicide. What’s more, bullying doesn’t even have to be physical to have such an effect; words can pierce like daggers in the right situation.
But what happens when the bullying comes not from another student, but from an adult? This poses a serious problem, as the issue can’t be easily addressed, a situation made even more unfortunate given the results of new research featured in Pediatrics that the Los Angeles Times recently related. The authors relate how emotional abuse perpetrated by a coach on his or her athletes has run rampant, with the effect often having a serious impact on those persons that are on the receiving end of it.
This can be a hard issue to address or correct, especially if the coach seems to direct his tirades at everyone on the team. Such vitriol geared toward a single athlete is also tough, though, as coaches may come up with a litany of excuses as to why what their doing is not harmful to the students and how it could actually be for their own good. The authors relate how coaches might place the blame on the athletes or stress how valuable their words are as a coaching technique.
Don’t buy into it. If you feel your child is being bullied by their coach, get in touch with the school, and if that doesn’t fix things, maybe even get ahold of Child Protective Services.