If You Are Bullying

Sometimes kids bully, but that doesn’t mean that they can’t change! That’s because bullying is about behavior, it’s about words and actions—not about who they are. It’s important to not label another kid as a “bully”. When someone is labeled with a name, everyone starts to think of them in that way.

It helps to understand the reasons that bullying occurs, and to then think about new ways to respond.

 

Bullying is about behavior and behavior can change.


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    You might thing bullying is fun or makes you cool, but think about it.

    What’s fun or cool about hurting someone? Name-calling, tripping someone, laughing at them, leaving them out, ignoring them — it really says more about you than them.

    Think about new ways to respond that don’t involve bullying.

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    Someone might bully because they:

    Think it’s no big deal.

    Think about it…

    Bullying means hurting someone else on purpose. It might seem like maybe you are just having some fun, that unless someone is crying, that no one is being hurt. But even when there are no tears, kids are getting hurt. When someone is hurt, they feel sad, scared and alone. Is that how someone should feel?

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    Someone might bully because they:

    think adults don’t care about bullying.

    Think about it…

    Adults care a lot. They want all kids to feel safe. A lot of bullying happens when they are not around. If adults see bullying or hear from another student that bullying is happening, there will be consequences. Who really wants to go to the principal’s office?

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    Someone might bully because they:

    think that some kids deserve it.

    Think about it…

    No one deserves to be bullied. Hurting someone for ANY reason is wrong. Kids who look or act different deserve to be treated with the same respect as everyone else. Really, aren’t we all different from each other in some way?

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    Someone might bully because they:

    are frustrated or unhappy with someone else.

    Think about it…

    There are many ways to handle feelings. Talking with someone is one idea—parents, adults at school or a friend—or even the other kid. What are other ways to deal with frustration or being mad?

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    Someone might bully because they:

    want to make sure they stay part of a group.

    Think about it…

    Who really wants to be known as one of the mean kids? When someone supports the kid bullying by simply going along with what’s happening, they become a bully, too. What about being in the group of those kids that stand against bullying?

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    Someone might bully because they:

    want to feel powerful or in control of other kids.

    Think about it…

    Bullying is never cool. Using cruel words or your fists to bring someone down is NEVER going to bring you up. Sometimes kids that bully get control just because the other kids are scared of them, not because they want to be their friend. What are other ways to make you feel good about yourself?

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    Someone might bully because they:

    are jealous of someone.

    Think about it…

    Jealously is something almost everyone feels. It’s okay to wish that you were as smart as someone else, as good of soccer player, or to be as popular. It’s not okay to bully someone else to make yourself feel better. How about working on what you are good at — and becoming even better?

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    Someone might bully because they:

    are looking for attention.

    Think about it…

    Bullying will get you attention—the kind you don’t want. Kids who bully often get sent to the principal’s office, are not allowed to go out at recess, may have to stay after school, or are sometimes not allowed to come to school at all. How about seeking positive attention by helping someone?

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    Someone might bully because they:

    have been bullied by someone else.

    Think about it…

    Bullying someone else will NOT make it better. Hurting someone is never the answer. In fact, it will probably make things worse as you will be seen as the problem. It is important to tell someone what is happening, so that they can help make it stop. How about becoming someone who stands against bullying?

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    You can stop yourself from bullying.

    It’s important that you stop bullying. Here’s how to show you’re really in control. Find an adult you trust and start talking. Whether it’s your mom or dad, a teacher, school counselor, or another trusted grown-up, tell them about what’s going on and ask for help. You can deal with the reasons you bully and find better ways to treat others. You want cool? That’s cool.