Bullying is when someone deliberately and repeatedly hurts another person. Bullying is never OK. Signs of bullying include physical injuries, problems at school, and sadness at home. Bullying can happen face to face. It can also happen online – for example, if people send nasty texts or say mean things about others on social media. This is cyberbullying. All bullying is hurtful.
When it keeps going, it can cause long-lasting harm. If you and your friends disagree or even argue, or if someone says something mean once, it can be unpleasant and even nasty. But it isn’t bullying. Bullying is mean and hurtful behaviour that happens over and over again.
Here are some helpful ideas to deal with bullying. They will help you to deal with any future bullying or negative social behaviour. It also helps you to feel more confident and less powerless about being bullied.
- Ignore it and think about moving away if the bullying continues: ‘You physically move away from children who are teasing or bullying’.
- Tell the person doing the bullying to stop: ‘Standing up to people who are bullying in a calm way lets them know that what they’re trying to do isn’t working’.
- Avoid high-risk places: ‘If you keep away from places where bullying happens, you can avoid the people doing the bullying – as long as this doesn’t stop you from doing things you like to do’.
- Stay around other people: ‘If you stay with your friends, the person doing the bullying probably won’t bother you. Or you could stay in a busier part of the school where there are teachers’.
- Ask other learners for help: ‘Other learner probably understand what you’re going through and can help you if you need it. People are less likely to bully if they can see that you have backup’.
- Tell the teacher: ‘Your teacher can help you deal with the problem. The person doing the bullying might not even know that the teacher is helping you. Bullying can be hard to handle, and grown-ups are there to help’.