Last week I mentioned that I was donating a percentage of my profits from Bone by Bone to Kidscape, the anti-bullying charity. I gave five tips for parents who want to help prevent their child from being bullied. This week I’m giving some more of the charity’s tips – this time, five things that kids can do.
Top 5 tips for young people
- Report it. Unless you report bullying to an adult, it’s very unlikely that it will stop. Talk to someone you trust about what has been happening. This could be a parent, a family friend or a teacher.
- Protect yourself online. If you have been experiencing cyber bullying, as well as telling a trusted adult, you should also report abusive messages or phone calls to website administrators and/or service providers. It’s also important to use privacy settings on social media, and to block bullies from being able to contact you. You should not respond to bullying remarks, as this will only make the situation worse.
- Remember that you are not to blame. Bullies will often target others based on ‘difference’, which can sometimes make their targets feel like they are the ones to blame. But you are not. Bullies will use any difference, even tiny ones, as an excuse. Never try to change for a bully, as they will often just find something else to pick on.
- Build up your confidence. Bullies will often pick on people who they think won’t stand up for themselves, as it means they can get away with it. Learning how to say ‘no’ and hold assertive body language with confidence is a really effective way to tackle bullying. Visit the Kidscape website for practical examples of how you can do this.
- Choose friends wisely. Bullying can be very subtle, and can even come from the people who are meant to be your friends. This type of bullying can be hard to spot, as it often happens little by little over a long period of time. Good friends support you, make you feel good about yourself and encourage you to behave in positive ways. If you think your friends don’t have your best interest at heart, you may wish to consider making new ones.
For more information about how to protect yourself from bullying and cyber bullying, make new friends and build confidence, visit the young people’s advice section on our website: www.kidscape.org.uk/advice.