What to do if you are being bullied

First and foremost, know it’s not your fault.  People often want to blame themselves or believe they did something to cause the problem.  Bullying tends to say more about the person doing the bullying than it does the victim. Sometimes people fight but if someone is being repeatedly mean to you and encouraging others to be mean to you then they are the bully and you don’t deserve that treatment.

Talk to a trusted adult about the situation.  It doesn’t have to be one of your parents but find someone you trust whether it’s a parent, grandparent, teacher or coach.  Find someone to confide in. Don’t try to go it alone.

Do not respond or retaliateas often times a reaction is what the bully is looking for.  Like we said before bullying is often not about you but about the bully looking to gain power over you.  Never empower a bully.  Do your best to remove yourself from the situation whether it’s at school, in the community or online.

Tell the individual to stopif removing yourself from the situation is not possible. You need to feel confident in doing this and then you need to make yourself very clear that you will not allow the bully to treat you the way they are.

If the person will not stop, save all evidence of the harassment.  Do not delete the communications.  Keep your electronic copies and print out hard copies in case things have to be escalated.  Should the person continue the harassment you can contact their Internet Service Provider and file a complaint.

Block the harasserafter you have made copies of the communication.  There is no reason to continue to engage with the bully or pay attention to them.  Use the tools found in your social media tools to eliminate the communication.  You can also report the person on most platforms and should even though it may not end the harassment.  Blocking them will limit your exposure and temptation to engage with the bullies.

Protect your accounts and don’t share passwords.  You should never share that information with anyone even friends.  Sometimes things change, and those people could then use that information to impersonate you online or in texts.  Also password protect your phone to protect yourself and your accounts.

If you ever get any sort of threat of physical harm you should talk to a parent or guardian and call the local police.  You can also report the threats to school authorities as well.