No one deserves to be bullied.
Bullying is a growing problem for tweens and is common at school. It is important for bullying to be taken seriously and addressed immediately as the impacts of bullying can last a lifetime. Being bullied can be upsetting and stressful and it can affect your life in many different ways, including your self-esteem, relationships and school work.
What can I do?
If you are targeted by a bully, talk to someone you trust about dealing with the situation, especially if you feel unsafe or frightened. Ignoring a bully, staying positive and surrounding yourself with people who care about you are helpful ways to deal with verbal bullying.
If you are targeted by a cyberbully, it’s important not to respond to any messages or posts written about you, no matter how hurtful or untrue. Responding will only make the situation worse and provoking a reaction from you is exactly what the bullies want. Make sure you save the evidence of the bullying, keep abusive text messages or a screenshot of a webpage, and then report them to a trusted adult, such as a family member, teacher, or school counselor. Many social media sites let you manage who you interact with by keeping accounts private. Prevent communication from the cyberbully, by blocking their email address, cell phone number, and deleting them from social media platforms.
Don’t be an online bully. We often say things online and later regret it. It is important to keep in mind that once you post something online, there is no taking it back, even if you feel badly about it later. Before you send a hasty text message or cell phone photo, spreading gossip or making fun of someone, carefully consider your actions.
Where can I get help?
If you are being bullied, the best thing to do is tell a parent or teacher. Visit stompoutbullying.org, www.stopbullying.gov, or download the “knowbullying” app by SAMHSA for more information on bullying.
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What are signs of bullying?
Name Calling Exclusion Public Humiliation Mean Pranks Any Type of Physical Harm
Bullying has no boundaries, meaning it happens through the use of technology too. This includes mean and aggressive texts, tweets, posts or other forms of social media communication. Bullying happens easily online. Communicating online makes it easier to spread rumors and be cruel to others simply because they are not saying something to the other person’s face.