Bullying is something that we tend to think of as being refined to the playground whereas in fact it can happen to anyone at work, online or even at home. What is important is that you can understand what constitutes bullying.

  • Physical Assault
  • Teasing
  • Making threats
  • Name Calling
  • Cyber Bullying

School

But no doubt one of the most common forms of bullying is that which occurs at school. Whilst it can be very hard if you are being bullied at school simply tell a friend, a teacher or tell your parents. It won't stop unless you do. It can be hard to do this so if you don't feel you can do it in person it might be easier to write a note to your parents explaining how you feel, or perhaps confide in someone outside the immediate family, like a grandparent, aunt, uncle or cousin and ask them to help you tell your parents what's going on.

Your teachers need to know what is going on so try to find a time to tell him or her when it won't be noticeable. You could stay behind on the pretext of needing help with some work. If you don't feel you can do that, then speak to the school nurse.

 Don't be tempted to respond to any bullying or hit back because you could get hurt or get into trouble.

Cyber Bullying

No doubt you are reading this on Virtual Teen which is available thanks to the wonderful internet but you need to remember that there are many dangers associated with the internet.  Cyberbullying is simply any form of bullying which takes place online or through a mobile device on websites such as Facebook, Myspace, Twitter or Bebo (which does still exist)

Problems include:

  • Stolen identity
  • Threats
  • Blackmail
  • Rumours and gossip
  • Abusive comments and nasty pictures

However, there are a number of things you can do, make sure that you always use a secure password so that only you have access to your account-this means don’t use your name or date of birth in your password. Another important thing to remember is that you ever come across anything on the internet, whether it's on social networking sites above or anywhere else, where people are making suggestions to you that make you feel uncomfortable or upset, please tell your parents or another adult. It’s important to communicate any concerns with an adult so that the problem can be looked at.

Stand Up to Bullying

As I said before you should NEVER physically attack a bully, never. But there are several thing s that you can do. For example body language tells us a lot about other people. Think about the last time you walked into school. How did you feel? Confident and powerful? Or timid and worried? If you're trying not to be noticed and looking at the ground a lot while darting into school it can make you more noticeable. You look defensive and vulnerable. If you step out boldly you send out a quite different message of confidence. You may not be very confident but you'll certainly look it.

If you feel confident enough you should also make it perfectly clear that you cannot accept the bullying behaviour, look the bully in the eye and tell them that you don’t like what they’re doing and you want them to stop. This will make them well aware that the behaviour isn’t acceptable.

How To Help

If you see someone being bullied and you don't do anything to help them then is will just continue and may get worse. Bullying can lead to many harmful actives such as self-harming, depression, drug use or even suicide. There are many signs to tell if someone is being bullied and you should look out to see if:

  • You hear someone calling them names, not loudly, but so that they will overhear?
  • You hear rumours being spread about them, in person or online?
  • Are they being left out of things when partners are chosen in class?
  • They're spending break and lunchtime on their own?
  • People are fixing up nice things to do out of school and leaving them out?
  • They’re getting nasty phone texts and abuse on the internet or by instant messaging?

If so, then you already know someone who is being bullied. There are many things you can do such as telling a teacher, a parent or keep a journal to record all of the instances and then give this to a teacher. The important thing is that you keep a note of what is happening and don’t ignore it.

Victims of Bullying

Nearly all of us have been picked on or bullied for something in our life such as our accent, skin colour, sexuality, gender or appearance. The one thing you have to remember is that it is not your fault if someone picks on you- the sole blame lies with the bully. Bullies want to get a reaction out of you when they tease you, they do it for personal gain and for power and if you’re able to show them that they’re not affecting you then they may stop.

If you do ever get bullied don’t panic or stress about it, simply follow the advice above and talk to the people around you about it.