MOVING FROM BYSTANDER TO UPSTANDER
If you see someone being verbally bullied, you can:
- Get a bunch of friends together and invite the target into your group. Bullies often pick on loners, so just having a bunch of people around helps to deter a bully.
- Don’t join in the laughter when a bully is teasing someone. Speak up. Tell them that they are not funny. It might not stop the bully from being mean, but it will make the target feel like they aren’t totally alone.
- Ask the bully’s target to hang out with you and then walk away together. A bully can’t pick on thin air.
- Most importantly, BE A FRIEND. Having someone to talk to means everything when you are being bullied. You feel less alone and less frightened. Think about how much you like having friends to talk to, and pass on the favor!
If you see someone being physically bullied, you can:
- Encourage the target to talk to the proper authorities, whether that is a school principal or the police.
- Keep the target surrounded by a group of allies – people who will support the target and not allow the bullying to take place.
- Encourage the target to call an organization like NVEEE for counseling and support.
If you are being bullied, you can:
- Avoid walking or hanging around alone.
- Join clubs and groups to meet friends who will support you.
- Keep a journal of what is happening and how you feel. Writing helps work through difficult situations and it also provides you with a record of events should you ever need one.
- Call NVEEE to speak to a trained counsellor about your situation and find other helpful resources in your area.
- If you have received any kind of unwanted physical contact from a bully, call the police and report the incident.