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Dealing with bullying
...before, during and after high school...

Bullying is, unfortunately, something that many kids associate with high school.
That’s a big shame because many kids make it through high school without any experience of bulling whatsoever.

If it does happen, it can occur in primary school just as easily as secondary, even in the workforce.

I guess bullying is often associated with high school because it can seem more prevalent because there are usually many more students and more social groups that can lead to more problems.

When most of us think of bullying, it’s easy to think of someone being backed into a corner of a classroom when the teacher is out of the room. An image of someone being verbally threatened or actually physically assaulted.

I remember, as a Year 7 student, new to my secondary school, being locked in the storeroom cupboard of the classroom by a tall student. That was just because I was the new girl and she didn’t really like me.

But, in fact, whilst physical bullying does still unfortunately occur, it is the emotional type of bullying that can be just as hurtful and can leave lasting memories and effects.

Examples of bullying...

  • Physically hitting, punching or shoving another person, intentionally.

  • Name calling.

  • Deliberately provoking someone, making fun of them.

  • Encouraging someone to do something he or she does not want to do.

  • Excluding someone from a group’s activities.

  • Gossiping.

  • Writing hurtful or nasty emails, letters or SMS messages.

Bully busters...

Bullies actually get their power from you...
...only if you give it away. Every time you react, you give the bully the result they were after. Ignoring someone takes away all their bully power and it all comes back to you!

Say NO!

As soon as you say this single, powerful word, you are letting bullies know loud and clear that what they are doing or saying is not okay. If you struggle a bit with this at first, start by saying it under your breath or in your mind until you soon have the courage to say it out loud and with authority. You are worth it! Saying ‘No’ loud and clear also lets everyone else around you know that what is happening is not okay. They are a witness to what is happening and your desire for it not to happen again!

Get help

If you are at school, it is really important that you let a teacher or coordinator know as soon as you are the victim of a bully. Most schools have in place (or should do) very strict anti-bullying policies. If you cannot talk to your teacher, ask a friend to go on your behalf or go with you.

Talk to your parents. They will deal with this on your behalf, and can talk to your teacher or school principal.

Stand tall and have confidence

Bullies are looking for someone from whom they can steal confidence. Try and remember that a bully is really just someone who is lacking confidence in his or her self. A bully tries to make others feel inferior to hide insecurities. When you remember this, you realise the bully is just a person who lacks confidence.

Don’t look the other way if you see someone being bullied

If you see a friend or someone else being bullied, you owe it to them to let someone know, or step in for them. Make sure you do not get involved with a situation of physical bullying; rather, call for assistance. Looking the other way and ignoring a bullying situation is just as bad as being the bully yourself.

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