Never be bullied into silence. Never allow yourself to be made a victim. Accept no one’s definition of your life; define yourself.
According to recent studies, bullying in the school grounds is on the increase. In fact, statistics show that on average, one in every six child will be a victim of bullying. Bullying is a brutal act, one which can strip the victim of their self-esteem, personal security, confidence and so much more. Being bullied can also lead to suicide if the bullying is consistent and over the top.
Bullying is defined as an activity which many adults have associated with their schooldays. Many adults can recall being bullied at school because they were studious, quiet, and perchance not academically sound or simply because they were in the right place at the wrong time. But bullies don’t need a sound reason to lash out.
The playground bully has long been a well-established stereotype. Yet these menaces to one’s confidence, self-esteem and inner harmony are not just focused on instilling fear in their victims in the school ground alone. Often times, they will follow their victims out of the school ground as well. Nothing is worse than being bullied and intimidated by another human being.
Unfortunately, although students theoretically have authorities who they can inform about the bullying, it often doesn’t happen. The reason for this is that sometimes victims feel as if the bullying is their fault. Many assume that because they are shy, deemed a nerd, are of a different race or don’t fit into what others deem the cool groups, they deserve to be harassed.
This is wrong, no one deserves to be bullied for any reason whatsoever. But whilst most schools have conscientious teachers, principals and so forth that are determined to rid the school or bullies, bullies are cunning and manipulative. Often times they instil such fear that their victims get their lips tightly sealed and suffer in silence.
Unfortunately this only gives a bully the incentive to continue to bully because they thrive on the sense of power it gives them. Yet this is inappropriate behaviour which needs to be nipped in the bud immediately. Bullying in the school can infringe on one’s ability to become academically sound. Besides, bully can scar a person emotionally if nothing is done about it. Bullying can also make school a place to fear.
It’s hard to know how to handle a situation of bullying. Sometimes one wants to yell abuse right back at them, throw a punch and shut them up or throttle them. Yet violence only leads to more violence and insults only leads to more as well. So what do you do if a bully is focused on you?
Don’t give a bully a chance to make you his/her target:
Avoid bullies and don’t give them a chance to start on you. Although you can’t hide at school or skip classes, you can choose a different place to eat lunch or use a different bathroom, take a different route to school and so forth. Some victims take to spending their time in the library during recess or interact with others where they are in clear view of teachers or principals.
When first approached by someone you know is a bully, walk away there and then. Don’t run but walk in a determined manner with shoulders back and head held high. This will tell the bully that you have no intention of allowing them to harass you. They want an easy target not someone they need to work on too much before they gain their bullying satisfaction.
Stand tall and give off the impression that you are brave:
Bullies prefer to pick on someone who looks vulnerable, so stand tall and give off the impression that you are brave. Although you may be scared, sometimes simply standing tall and proud is enough to have a bully look elsewhere for a victim. When you stand tall you basically tell the bully “Don’t mess with me, I may give you a run for your money!” If you stand tall and proud it will help boost your confidence and it will certainly show.
Pay attention to your personal grooming and hygiene:
At times bullies pick on those that they feel give them just cause to do so. They may think their bullying is justified if they focus on someone who looks scruffy, has matted hair, dirty clothes or body odour. Present yourself well and they may leave you alone. Come to school looking like something the cat wouldn’t drag in and you give a bully the fuel they need to start victimizing you.
Besides, when you look good you feel good and give off the impression of confidence and high self-esteem. A bully will then think that you are not vulnerable enough to tangle with. If you are overweight, now may be the time to focus on getting fit. Bullies love nothing better than picking on an overweight vulnerable person. You will improve your health as well so the benefits are many.
Use the buddy system:
Pair up with a friend you can trust. Two people together are far better than one when it comes to avoiding being bullied. Bullies usually single out someone who is often on their own. Walk to school together, pair up at lunch time or wherever it is possible you may run into this bully. Befriend others who look vulnerable or have become a bully’s target. Get involved if you witness bullying to others, speak up for the victim and tell the bully to stop or you will tell an adult. Let your voices be heard “Bullying must stop!”
Give bullies a deaf ear:
Bullies love nothing more than taunting their victim/victims, cussing at them, calling them names, mocking them and making threats. Try to turn a deaf ear to the insults and walk away quickly to a place of safety. The bully is waiting for a reaction, when you fail to give it to him/her you have taken power right out of their hands. This could stop the bullying behaviour.Don’t shout back nasty comments as this could escalate to a full blown physical fight or which you may not win. Besides, violence only leads to more violence. It’s not the way to stop a bully it only adds more fuel to the flames of nastiness.
Bullying is not acceptable behaviour, it is wrong. You must stand up for yourself and voice this fact. Tell the bully that you are not going to be his or her verbal or physical punching bag. Although you may not feel too confident, you need to pretend to be brave. Tell the bully “Stop it. I will not allow you to bully me” in a firm and very loud voice. First and foremost you will be telling them that you are not prepared to take the bullying sitting down and secondly, the loud voice may have them worried that adults will hear and come to see what’s going on.
Don’t do what a bully tells you to do:
A bully has absolutely no authority over you whatsoever, so let them know that. If a bully tells you to do something such as grovel for your school books back or beg them to hand you back your lunch, say “NO” and walk away. Now tell a teacher what has happened, but don’t try to fight them for your processions or beg for their return. When you give in to a bully’s demands, you make yourself a prime target for more bullying. Bullies love nothing better than bullying kids who won’t stick up for themselves.
Don’t hit, push, punch or kick out in an attempt to bully back. You’ll only give the bully exactly what he/she wants, a response. Besides, bullying back can be dangerous. If you bully back you will be going against the non-bullying rules within the school and could end up in just as much trouble as the real bully. You could end up suspended or expelled from school.
Give the bully a dead-pan face:
Nothing tells a bully more clearly, that you are not going to be their victim, than a dead-pan expression on the face. When a bully is in your face, try visualizing them as a helpless turtled on their backs with their legs up in the air. This will help stop yourself from getting angry or showing how upset you really are.
A bully cannot guess your true emotions if you present a blank face to them. This turns the tables on them as they will then be very anxious about what you are really thinking, feeling or planning in response. Just keep on mentally imagining the bully in helpless situations while they’re in your face. Keep that dead-pan face until you are out of the situation.
Tell an adult as soon as the bullying starts:
Don’t wait until you are either covered in bruises or an emotional wreck before you tell an adult that you are a victim of bullying. Seek out someone you can trust in the school, tell them every single thing that is happening to you. Tell them all about the taunts and the physical abuse (if it has come to that), and the theft of your lunch and so forth. This is not a coward’s act, it takes a load of courage to come forward and become an informer as far as bullying is concerned. Bullying is wrong and needs to be stopped. You are not a tattle-tail; you are a responsible student who is trying to protect others whilst protecting yourself.
Bullies eventually get caught and wind up in a load of trouble. They end up segregating themselves from others and not having very many friends whatsoever. They are not respected or deemed people worthwhile interacting with. When a person keeps on being nasty and cruel people want nothing to do with them. Kids who are bullies eventually lose their power as well as their self-respect. Their old mates move on and leave them behind to live with their conscience and nothing else.
Bullies can end up living very lonely lives because no one will trust them and trust is a big thing when it comes to befriending people. If you are a bully’s target or know someone who is, it is imperative that you speak to an adult. Every single human being has the right to feel safe. Bullying is a serious issue and should be taken seriously. If you are a victim of bullying, tell someone and keep on telling them until something is done about it.