Bullying affects over one million young people every year, and anyone can be bullied. Here’s some information from Young Minds about what you can do if you’re being bullied and some organisations that can help.
What is bullying?
If somebody physically hurts you, or verbally abuses you, that’s bullying. Specific types of bullying include:
Bullying can be a one-off or it can go on for a long time. And bullying can happen to anyone.
How bullying can affect you
Bullying can make you feel isolated and worthless, lonely, anxious, angry and lacking confidence. You may experience some or all of these feelings.
Some people who are being bullied develop depression, anxiety and eating problems. They may self harm or turn to drugs and alcohol. If you are experiencing problems like these because of bullying, it’s having an impact on your health. You need to talk to your GP, who will keep any information confidential.
Bullying in any form is hurtful and unacceptable and can make your life miserable.
Get help for bullying
Ignoring bullying won’t make it go away. You need to tell someone about what is happening.
If the bullying is happening at school – talk to your parents or carers and your teacher. Your teacher may have no idea that you are being bullied, and the school will have an anti-bullying policy to tackle it. If you feel you can’t speak to your teacher, maybe a friend can do it for you. You can also speak to a school counsellor, welfare officer or nurse. In extreme cases, if bullying is interfering with your education it may be possible for you to change schools if it doesn’t stop once you have reported it.
If the bullying is happening outside school – talk to your parents or carers, close relatives such as grandparents, aunties and uncles, even your friends’ parents. Youth workers and leaders may be able to help too.
If the bullying is happening online – tell a trusted adult – your parents or carers, or a teacher. You can report abusive posts on Facebook and other social media platforms. You can also report abuse to CEOP (Child Exploitation and Online Protection Centre).
Keep reporting the bullying until it stops. It may not stop the first time you tell your parents or teacher and they try to stop it. If the bullying continues, tell them again. Don’t put up with it. No one deserves to be bullied.
Helplines and services available
YoungMinds Crisis Messenger
The Mix www.themix.org.uk