Responding to bullying
Useful Anti-Bullying Helplines:
(1) National Runaway Safeline: 1-800-RUNAWAY (24/7, free & confidential)
(2) www.pacer.org 1-952-838-9000 (8am-5pm Mon-Fri);
(3) Garden State Equality’s Anti-Bullying Hotline: 1-877-NJ-BULLY;
(4) National Parent Helpline: 1-855-427-2736 (1-855-4A PARENT)
10 Ways to Respond to Bullying
If you have experienced bullying, you are not alone. There are people who can help and actions you can take to make things better.
If you’ve experienced bullying, do NOT think that it is your fault, it isn’t. So don’t suffer in silence, reach out and try the following:
In the Moment…
1. Walk Away: If possible, remove yourself from the situation immediately.
2. Say “Stop:” If it feels safe, tell the bully to stop in a firm but calm way. If you feel confident to do so, use humor or a clever response to weaken the effect of the mean behavior.
3. Keep Cool: Try to control your emotions in the moment. Showing fear or
anger may encourage the bully/ing to continue.
4. Don’t Fight: Try not to fight or bully back in response—this may just continue the cycle of bad behavior.
After the Incident…
5. Tell a Friend: Don’t keep the bullying a secret. Tell a friend and ask for support. You will feel better, and your friend can help you decide what to do next and go with you to get assistance.
6. Report to an Adult: Tell a trusted adult what has happened.
Remaining silent will not make things better and may worsen the situation.
Reporting a serious problem is not the same as “tattling.” Adults need to know about bullying behavior so they can support you and take action to stop it.
7. Find Safe Spaces: Try to avoid “danger zones” where bullying is likely to take occur and where there are few adults who can help. Try to surround yourself with supportive friends or classmates whenever you can.
8. Practice Responding: Reflect on how you might react to bullying in the future and rehearse those responses with a trusted friend or adult. Think about what strategies have worked or fallen short, and don’t give up if your first response is not successful.
9. Express Your Feelings: Keep a diary or journal—written, electronic or video—where you can record your private thoughts and feelings. It is important to express yourself, especially when you are going through a tough time.
10. Reach Out: Find new friends, hobbies or interests that occupy your time in positive ways and make you feel good about yourself. Avoid spending too much time on your own.
ADULTS……………….. Support Bystanders Who Witness Bullying to become Upstanders!!!!
Even if kids are not bullied or bullying others they can be affected by bullying. Many times, when they see bullying, they may not know what to do to stop it. They may not feel safe stepping in in the moment, but there are many other steps they can take. Through work in the school and the community, YOU can help!!!