Talking to LGBTQ teens about bullying is not something a parent wants to do, but sadly it is something that is still necessary. We as a nation are still dealing with discrimination, and sometimes, our children have to suffer the consequences of that. However, there are legal options families can take while still ensuring their child’s wellbeing.
If your child is being bullied in school, you should be aware that the staff and administrators have a legal responsibility to respond to that bullying in a quick and meaningful manner.
Talking to LGBTQ Teens about Bullying
As a parent, you want your child to have an easy time at school and make tons of friends. However, sometimes the world is against them and learning that as a teen is never easy.
Make sure your child knows you are there for them and that you love them no matter what.
Also, encourage them to remember the following things.
- The bullying says more about the bullies than themselves.
- Never apologize for being themselves.
- Nothing the bullies say is true.
Additionally, remind them that responding to the bullies or acting as though they care or are hurt will only give the bullies what they want.
Bullies are looking for attention or reactions from their victims. Giving it to them teaches them your child is a source for those reactions, and the bullying will continue.
By not giving it to them, the bully will learn to look elsewhere.
Mental Health Support
In addition to offering your support, it’s also important to ensure that your child has professional support if needed.
Children being bullied are at a higher risk for suicide and other mental health crises. Please reach out for help if you need it.
Click here for more information.
What are my legal options?
In addition to giving you tips for talking to LGBTQ teens about bullying, we want you to know your child’s school might be violating their civil rights.
As organizations that accept federal money, schools are legally required to comply with all federal rights laws.
That means they have to take steps to prevent and address bullying when the bullying is based on any of the following categories.
- Gender Identity
- Sexual Orientation
- National Origin
- And More
If your child is being bullied for being LGBTQ, and the school does nothing, then the school is not complying with federal rights laws.
Their actions can be considered discrimination against your child for their sexual orientation.
For more information on federal civil rights laws and bullying, click here.
Be sure to be on the lookout for other signs of discrimination. Click here to download our free signs of discrimination checklist!
In the meantime
While building your case or looking for a lawyer, keep a log of all communication you have with the school. This can include emails, letters they send home, or notes taken during phone calls or meetings.
Additionally, keep invoices and receipts for all expenses related to the bullying, such as replacing damaged property or medical fees from any therapists or doctors you have to consult.
Reaching out to a lawyer
We at Cueto Law understand how difficult this is. That is why we offer free consultations to anyone who thinks they are facing discrimination.
Feel free to call us at 618-277-1554 to talk to one of our attorneys about the specifics of your case.