Bullying can take on lots of different forms and can happen anywhere.
But however it might look, it’s always wrong. If someone’s behaviour towards you is stopping you from feeling safe and in control, it is bullying.
It’s good to be clear about what that bullying behaviour might look like.
Here are some examples, which could happen face to face or online:
Name calling and teasing
Being put down or made to feel small
Being ignored or left out
Having rumours spread about you
Having threats made against you
Being picked on because of who you are or how people see you
Having money and other belongings taken or messed about with
Pushing or pulling you, hitting or kicking
Receiving nasty messages online
Nasty comments made about you online.
There can be many reasons behind why someone bullies someone else. It may be because of their attitude towards other people, or it could be because of their own insecurities.
I’m being bullied
What are my options?
Talk to someone you trust – this could be a teacher, family member or friend. It may not make the bullying stop, but it can help you feel better, especially as bottling up your feelings can make you feel worse.
Tell a member of staff at school – the school has a duty to look after you and make sure you feel safe.
If you don’t feel like you can talk to anyone you know, try talking to ChildLine 0800 1111.
Steer clear of the person doing the bullying – block, delete or unfriend anyone who is bullying you on social media. Change your walk home from school. Avoid places in the school where the bully hangs out.
Record the bullying. Keep a log about the times you are bullied, or save any messages you get. You can use your notes to report the bullying to the school.
This video from RespectMe has more suggestions for how to deal with with bullying behaviour:
“Definitely talk to someone. It’s the best thing you can do, and you have to know that you don’t need to go through this alone. Let someone know it’s happening and they can help you through it…”
A young person who has experienced bullying
How can my school help?
Your school should have anti-bullying policies that they follow. These are there to protect all pupils and staff.
They should take the time to talk with you. School staff have a responsibility to listen to any concerns that you have. They should also give you the opportunity to share suggestions that you think could help make things better.
You have the right to have your say and shape your support.
If you are 12-15 and finding it difficult to speak to your school about bullying, an organisation called My Rights, My Say can help.
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