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Is your girl bullying?

Bully Parents

Girls sometimes may bully in less obvious ways than boys, such as by gossiping, so it can be easy to miss. Make sure to talk to a girl often about school and friends. Keep reading to learn more.

Signs that a girl is bullying others arrow. top

A girl may be involved in bullying if she shows some of these signs:

  • Having a strong need to control others and to feel powerful
  • Acting intolerant of differences
  • Being overly concerned about being popular
  • Getting into physical or verbal fights
  • Getting sent to the principal's office or detention a lot
  • Having extra money or new belongings that cannot be explained
  • Blaming others for her problems
  • Having friends who bully
  • Feeling a strong need to win or be the best

If you think a girl you care for has been bullying, talk with her. Children and teens who bully often have problems other than the bullying behavior. They are more likely to be depressed, do less well in school, or have risky sex, for example. And if they don't get help, they may have more problems down the road, including trouble with the law.

How to help a girl stop bullying others arrow. top

Here are some ways to help a girl who bullies:

  • Talk with your child. If you suspect bullying, stay calm. Give your girl a chance to explain her side of the story.
  • Make clear that bullying is not acceptable. Talk about how bullying affects the person who is bullied. You can look together at ideas for how to stop bullying others.
  • Tell her what will happen if she bullies. Set rules, and enforce them fairly and consistently. Do not use physical discipline. Try taking away certain privileges instead.
  • Teach and reward better behavior. Talk about ways a girl can meet her needs or express anger without hurting others. Praise any progress. Encourage a girl to build her strengths and talents through positive activities, such as a school club.
  • Get help. Ask your school how you can work together on any problems. Talking with a school counselor or other health professional also can help.
Learn more about what to do — and what not to do — if your child has been bullying


Content last reviewed April 15, 2014
Page last updated August 28, 2014