Bullying Survival Tips
Here are some things you can do to combat bullying. They're also good tips to share
with a friend as a way to show your support:
Ignore the bully and walk away
Bullies thrive on the reaction they get, and if you walk away, or ignore hurtful
emails or instant messages, you're telling the bully that you just don't care.
Sooner or later the bully will probably get bored with trying to bother you.
Bullies want to know they have control over your emotions. If you're in a situation
where you have to deal with a bully and you can't walk away with poise, use humor —
it can throw the bully off guard. Work out your anger in another way, such as through
exercise or writing it down.
However you choose to deal with a bully, don't use physical force. You are more likely
to be hurt and get in to trouble if you use violence against a bully. You can stand up
for yourself in other ways, such as gaining control of the situation by walking away or
by being assertive in your actions. Aggressive responses tend to lead to more violence
and more bullying for the victims.
Practice ways to respond to the bully verbally or through your behavior. Practice feeling
good about yourself (even if you have to fake it at first).
It may help to talk to a guidance counselor, teacher, or friend; anyone who can give you
the support you need. Talking can be a good outlet for the fears and frustrations that can
build when you're being bullied.
If you've been bullied with rumors or gossip, all of the above tips (especially ignoring
and not reacting) can apply. Find one or two true friends and confide how the gossip has
hurt your feelings. Set the record straight by telling your friends quietly and confidently
what's true and not true about you. Hearing a friend say, "I know the rumor's not true.
I didn't pay attention to it," can help you realize that most of the time people see gossip
for what it is — petty, rude, and immature.