Bullying. It is something that should have been eradicated the moment it first reared its ugly face. Unfortunately, it still exists and probably will exist forever. The good news is, there are ways to get out of a situation where you are being bullied. If you find yourself in one of those situations here are some things we want you to know.
Number One: Tell someone
Lots of us are afraid to tell anyone because we think it will cause everything to blow up and make it worse. Also, we are embarrassed and don’t want others to know we are victims of bullying. Just start by telling one person you trust; a parent, a teacher, a guidance counsellor, or a doctor. If you have been holding it to yourself for a while you will feel instantly better. Then you will be able to come up with a solution together.
Number Two: Know that you probably haven’t done anything to deserve it
Being a victim of bullying rarely actually has anything to do with you. If you had done anything differently, looked a different way, said a different thing, or worn a different outfit, it probably wouldn’t have made a difference. Think of it this way, when you are upset, frustrated, insecure, or angry, there is nothing more irritating than someone who is the opposite of those things. Bullies try to drag others down to make themselves feel better. Don’t change a thing about yourself to try to please them.
Number Three: We all want to be liked
Of course we do. But this world is made up of millions of different personality types, and it needs those types to keep it spinning. Sometimes those personalities just won’t gel. That’s okay. We need to learn to respect those differences and not expect everyone to come around to our way of thinking. It’s okay, let it go. Stop trying so hard.
Number Four: You are not the only one
Divide and conquer. That’s how bullies work. They want everyone to feel alone so they don’t form alliances and stand up to them. Look around you, there is someone else in your school who is just as alone and scared as you are. If she’s sitting alone, go sit with her. You never know, you could make a real, honest and lifelong friend.
Number Five: When they go low, we go high
Don’t behave in a way that you will regret. Don’t sink to the same behaviour. It will only make things worse, and you will feel bad about yourself because you know better.
Number Six: Don’t let what they say give you insecurities
They will keep making comments until they find the one that gets the biggest reaction. They’ll say you have a big arse, a small arse, you’re too tall, too short, too skinny, too fat. Own it. You are you, and the things about you that are different are the things that make you stand out after school when those who are different are considered awesome, interesting and attractive to others.
Number Seven: Remind yourself that the bully is usually in a very bad place
If you knew exactly what their life entails, you probably wouldn’t swap lives with them in a million years. They are clutching for some form of power and control, a diversion from the things that are making them so unhappy. This doesn’t make it right, but it might help you feel a bit better.
Number Eight: It will pass
It might not seem like it now, but they will get bored after a while and move on. They always do. And when they do, don’t let it put you off ever trying to make new friends, try new things, or push yourself to achieve your goals. That would be an awful shame.
Also, you’re in good company. Did you know:
Lady Gaga was called a freak in school
Mila Kunis was told she had a funny face and her eyes and lips were too big
People said Rihanna’s green eyes and boobs were weird
Jessica Alba’s Dad had to walk her to school so she wouldn’t be attacked
The Girls in Miley Cyrus’s class called themselves the “Anti-Miley Club”
Jennifer Lawrence had to switch schools because she was bullied.
Bullying may always exist, but together we can fight it! Hang in there, talk to someone, and ask for help. If you don’t know where to turn, try some of these organisations:
SPUN OUT: This is a one-stop shop for all mental health issues. The articles are very matter-of-fact, helpful and all bases are covered.
SAMARITANS: This helpline is open 24 hours a day and completely confidential. Call 116 123.
CHILDLINE: Helpline and online support, offering advice and support to young people under 18.
AWARE: Providing support and assistance to that section of society whose lives are affected by depression, bipolar disorder, postnatal depression or suicidal thoughts.
YOURMENTALHEALTH: Lots of information about Mental Health in Ireland.
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