If people are trying to bring you down, it only means that you are above them. Kia kaha.
Bullying is when someone keeps doing or saying things to have power over another person.
No one deserves to be bullied. Whether you’re dealing with someone who pushes you around or a mystery cyber troll, it’s important you know how to cope with bullies.
You probably already know this, but bullying is more than just a one-off thing (like a friend calling you a name when they’re ticked off). It’s when someone sets out to make your life miserable.
They could be threatening you, starting rumours about you, touching you when you don’t want them to, hurting you physically, stealing your stuff or abusing you online.
Most of the time bullies feel bad about themselves and the only way they can feel up is by bringing you down. Bullying is a serious problem that can disrupt your life and lead to physical and emotional health problems.
Aunty Dee’s tips for dealing with bullying
1. Talk to someone
Tell a trusted family member, friend, workmate, sports team mate, church leader or school teacher what’s going on for you, especially if you feel like you are at risk of being harmed or hurt. If the trusted person you have confided in is not sure how to help, keep talking things through with them, and involve others. Read my tips on talking too.
2. Deal with cyber bullying
Cyber bullying is bullying. It’s using the internet, phone, mobile device or other technology like a camera, to hurt somebody, have power over them, or embarrass them. Bullies might also hack you, post mean things about you and create fake accounts in your name. If you are being cyber bullied do not reply! Tell people you trust, save evidence of the bullying, and if there are serious threats, contact the police. For more info, check out Netsafe's cyberbullying website as well as the info that Facebook has on offer about bullying through social media.
3. Bullying first aid tips
Sometimes it’s good to have a few pointers up your sleeve for sticky situations. The following tips are from www.pinkshirtday.org.nz. Check them out for more info.
- Find safety in numbers – walk to, from, and around school with friends.
- Stand up for yourself – this can be really hard, but sometimes showing your strength and telling people their behaviour is unacceptable can be very powerful. If it happens again, it can be really helpful to be able to tell your parents or school that you’ve tried to manage the situation on your own and let that person know that you don’t like how they’re treating you.
- Walk away – often bullies thrive on attention. Starving them of attention by ignoring them and removing yourself from the situation is a powerful thing to do.
- Write down what happened to you, as many details as you can remember.
- Don’t attack others – you’ll just become a part of the problem.
4. Get free and confidential help
There are also many health professionals and free and confidential helplines available. Helplines are staffed by trained volunteers who are there to listen and support. Even if a phone call is not enough to help, it can be a good first step. Check out my helplines page for a list of free services.