Why You Shouldn't Bully Your Kids

Without realizing it, parents sometimes bully our children. But it is necessary that we modify this behavior as soon as possible, to avoid some negative consequences.
Why You Shouldn't Bully Your Kids
Mara Amor López

Written and verified by the psychologist Mara Amor López.

Last update: 27 December, 2022

All children must grow up in a safe environment that guarantees emotional well-being. If this doesn’t happen, in the future, they may suffer some problems having to do with their mental health. No parent has a parenting manual, and their primary motivation is often love, guidance, and affection. But sometimes, we can go overboard and end up inadvertently intimidating children. This is something that we should look at and modify as soon as possible. With all this in mind, we want to take a closer look at why you shouldn’t bully your kids.

Ways to bully children that we should avoid

Although you may not realize it, bullying your kids can cause them considerable emotional damage.

All parents want the best for their children and sometimes, in our exaggerated attempts to make them the best and to behave well, we fall into intimidation. Let’s look at some examples.

1. Overcontrol (overprotective parents)

Parents with an authoritarian upbringing exercise excessive control over their children. These strict behaviors, coupled with a lack of love and warmth, contribute to an intimidating situation for children.

Many of these parents set unilateral rules, that is, without taking into account the opinion of their children or giving room for negotiation. This lack of empathy of parents towards their children causes children to lose trust in them.

A mother bullying her son.

2. Aggression (abusive parents)

Parents who use aggression as a parenting technique also make use of intimidation or abuse towards their children.

This type of parenting involves threats, yelling, and verbal and physical aggression. A child or adolescent raised in this way can have severe consequences in their emotional health. At first, it’s normal for them to respond with fear, but they can also show rebellious behaviors.

3. Narcissistic parenting

Narcissistic parents believe that they’re the example of perfect parents, but at home, not everything is so perfect. Despite appearances, these types of parents show no real empathy or unconditional love for their children.

In general, they’re focused only on the achievements and triumphs of their little ones as a form of personal gratification. Many of them have emotional deficiencies and the children are the ones who end up taking care of them.

Narcissistic parents are also bullies and can become abusive and mean to their children. But, for the rest of the world, they give the impression of being the ideal parents.

Why you shouldn’t bully your children

Any form of bullying of children only brings negative emotional and social consequences. In addition, it encourages them to follow this pattern in the future, even when raising their own children.

If, when a parent gets angry, they explode without showing respect and use anger to discipline, their children will learn this pattern of behavior as a way of interacting with others.

It’s important to note that the bullying behaviors of certain children don’t always indicate that their parents engage in such behavior at home. But it’s possible that these parents commit some mistakes in their parenting, such as lack of respect or care for their children. This can happen both voluntarily and involuntarily.

A parent threatening to beat their child with a belt.

Conclusions regarding not bullying your children

If, after reading, you feel that you can identify with any of these parenting styles, it’s important that you consider changing it as soon as possible. It’s important that you do it for the sake of your child, but also for yours.

If you feel like you’re not capable of changing those aspects of parenting on your own, seek help from a parenting and psychology professional. This way, you can give your children the healthy upbringing you want.


All cited sources were thoroughly reviewed by our team to ensure their quality, reliability, currency, and validity. The bibliography of this article was considered reliable and of academic or scientific accuracy.


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This text is provided for informational purposes only and does not replace consultation with a professional. If in doubt, consult your specialist.