7 Steps to Stopping a Bully
BULLYING! – How should kids Reasonable Handle Bullies?
Jenny Silverstone is a writer over at momlovesbest.com. She created a great infographic with steps to learn about bullying prevention. She’s a lot nicer than I am. I thought her more gentle approach should be sighted alongside of my HARSHER methods below!
All of this seems admirable. But is it effective?
If it’s not effective, or helpful in the long-term, can it be considered a Reasonable approach to stopping bullies from being bullies?
Unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves a real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time. Both kids who are bullied and who bully others may have serious, lasting problems.
In order to be considered bullying, the behavior must be aggressive and include:
- An Imbalance of Power: Kids who bully use their power—such as physical strength, access to embarrassing information, or popularity—to control or harm others. Power imbalances can change over time and in different situations, even if they involve the same people.
- Repetition: Bullying behaviors happen more than once or have the potential to happen more than once.
Bullying includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally, and excluding someone from a group on purpose.
What sticks out to me most?
There is a part in the definition that I find unReasonable. That last sentence of the first paragraph:
“Both kids who are bullied and who bully others may have serious lasting problems.”
UNREASONABLE. Why should both kids, since we are talking about kids….have ‘serious lasting problems’? If anyone will have lasting problems it most certainly shouldn’t be BOTH kids.
If there are to be ‘serious lasting problems’, why should the bullied carry this burden alone? The bullied kid should emerge from this very temporary ordeal stronger, more confident, with higher standards for themselves. I’d like the bullied to have ‘serious lasting strength and confidence’. Not problems.
School is where most of the bullying is right?!
I’m acknowledging that bullying goes on in places other than school. But, society primarily seems focuses on sports teams and schools so…..we will too.
Let’s take time to evaluate the job we are doing in schools. There are usually only several, 3-5 minutes tops, between classes. Not much time at all. Teachers, administrators, aids, and other staff members are typically around, and easy to contact if you need to. As students move between classes, eat in the cafeteria, head for the bus at the end of the day, make a restroom pit-stop, someone with some authority is always nearby.
So, if this is the case, WHY does most bullying still take place in schools? There’s really no excuse. There are 2 fully accountable parties, the kid getting bullied, and the teachers/administrators allowing the bullying to take place. Yes, Allowing!! Let me explain the FULLY ACCOUNTABLE phrase I used.
They go home at the end of the day. Relieved to have the kids all alive, and none suspended or expelled. After all their jobs are on the line if the school does not perform to some board of education standard. They are in the halls of middle and high schools during classes changing. They know who the bullies are and who gets bullied. Yet, for the most part, they do nothing. Kids are killing themselves, parents are not being contacted, and children have to sit though school sanctioned assemblies about TOLERANCE or SPEAKING UP. Seems like they are putting most of the responsibilities on the kids anyway. Well we can count the administrator and teachers out, as far as getting any actual help to the students.
I’d like to acknowledge the administrators, teachers, aids, and faculty that still adhere to the Reasonable rules of Common sense. You like to remove the “problem” children from the classroom while the majority of the students get a chance to learn. You like to shame the bully and ensure they know they behavior is goes against an unwritten standard that society must cling to. You have no problem with a child verbally or physically defending themselves, as if they were in the real world. As an adult being accosted or assaulted by a fellow citizen. I also would like to acknowledge that you consider the bully. You consider the pain they must be in. You try to get to the bottom of what ails them. You try to figure out why they are so, angry, sad, aggressive, hurt, or confused. They are in pain and you want to help them. But under no circumstances will you allow them to hurt someone else. I salute all of you. Please be mindful – there is a very, very, small percentage of school faculty members that TRULY FIT the description above. We’ve come so far, but have become so unReasonable.
7 Steps to Stopping a Bully
If you are getting Bullied – it’s your fault! It’s not your fault that the bullying began, but it is your fault that the bullying is continuing.
I know each of these things individually may not work, but if all things are at least attempted you will get results. You will not be bullied, or you will cut down the bullying time substantially.
- Did you tell the bully to stop? And mean it. Now is not the time to laugh off the Bully. It’s embarrassing, hurtful, maybe painful, scary, and annoying. So act like it. Mean what you say.
- Did you tell the teacher? You’ve got a problem and they are the closest person, with any authority that can help you out. Don’t be shy. Be BOLD. Say: ‘This person is doing, this thing, or saying these things to me, it’s been going on for X days/weeks. I’ve told them to stop X times but they just won’t. I need you to do something. I’m here to learn not put up with this!’
- Did you move away from the bully? If the teacher won’t let you move your seat in class, take it upon yourself. Sure you’ll get in trouble for about 5 minutes. If you just get up and move your desk to the other side of the room. But when your ‘disruption’ becomes public, your teacher will look like an idiot for not moving your seat or watching you more closely. If the teacher won’t help you. HELP YOURSELF.
- Did you tell the principal? Hey don’t worry, this is the next step. You’ve told the bully, you told your teacher, you’ve tried to move. You’ve been very Reasonable. Now you go up a level. The head person in-charge. Don’t expect much, but that’s where you go next. If this doesn’t stop, you’ve taken ever Reasonable step to solving your problem the RIGHT way!
- Did you tell your parents or guardians? This could be Step 1, 2, 3, 4, or 5. Parents or Guardians need to be involved with ANY problem you have as it relates to you being bullied. If you can trust your parents TELL THEM! They will help. If they won’t, the boys in blue can!
- Did you call the police? If you are assaulted, or threatened. CALL THE COPS. They will come and just the sight of the LAW staring at the bully, taking statements, embarrassing the principal and your teachers. You’ll most certainly be left alone if this goes the way that it should. You are entitled to be safe, and feel safe at school. If that’s taken from you, you must take it back.
- Did you write to your local news station and tell your story? Spare no details and CALL OUT EVERYONE! Call out the bully, the teachers, principal, your parents, the cops anyone who didn’t help you when you asked.
Notice, I didn’t say you should put yourself in harm’s way. I did not say that you should “stand-up” to the bully. You should just be the loudest, squeakiest, most annoying, wheel that simply cannot be ignored. If this bully has got to bully someone, that’s fine. It just doesn’t have to be you! That’s the most Reasonable way out of this. Do not do anything to ruin your credibility, good name, or positive reputation. Do not compromise yourself. You are a good person…..and let’s face it……
We all know the bully…
The bully is maybe stronger, bigger, more popular, better connected, good-looking, but they are weak. Don’t forget that. A bully is weak, and usually scared. They may be a bad student but are bigger, so they can take your work from you. They may be having financial issues, so they take your money or stuff. They may have low self-esteem, so they want to wipe the smile off of your face. It could be any number of things. I feel bad for the bully. BUT NOT IN THIS ARTICLE. That should be the NEW definition for the BULLY. Unreasonably Scared, abuser, that doesn’t want to look in the mirror. They hurt those that did nothing to them, for no legitimate reason. They can’t cope with something, so they lash out in one way or another.
Build your strength, physically and mentally. That’s why you are being bullied. You want the bullying to stop, but don’t know what to do. Your father may be a doormat, or not around. Your mom may be a complainer a whiner, but have never been one to take action. Whatever your situation, you ARE being bullied. Where you are weak you must become strong. Something inside of you is projecting itself as weak. You’ve got to find out what it is. You don’t deserve to be bullied for this, but you are projecting weakness, and that is a Reasonable fact.
7 Things You Can Do to Strengthen Yourself
- If you think taking a Karate, Tae-Kwon-Do, or Krav Maga class is what’s best. Sign-up. You get to do things in these classes, that you might dread doing in the real world. You get to learn specific techniques and strategies to physically protect yourself. You meet new people, learn with them and test out what you learned in a controlled environment with instructors watching the whole time. This is a great mental and physical strengthening habit you should develop. You’ll be different after learning to break a board, and feel incredible after doing it. Trust me, I know!
- If playing video games 4 hours a day, has left you socially inept. Turn it off. There has got to be something better you can do. At least ask yourself, are you playing video games to escape reality in any way? Are you bullying people, or getting bullied online because the person isn’t there with you? Too much time in the fantasy world will really help your gamer ranking. But it will not do much to help you in the real world.
- Find some friends with mutual interests. They can be outside of school, that’s cool. In fact that’s better. You’ll know more people in more places. You’ll come together over mutual interests, as opposed to being in the same
- Take up a hobby that you feel great about, that will help with confidence. There’s no need in spending all of your time doing things that you don’t choose. You’ve got to do things that you want to do, as well as things you don’t want to do. That’s life. That’s life for everyone, and you are no different.
- Hit the gym at school, or at the local YMCA to lift some weights. Strength and Confidence! I’m not saying this one because I want you to get bigger to pound the bully. Lifting weights, in the weight room, is a daunting thing. Going into the gym is an accomplishment! Literally, walking in and actually doing something when you aren’t comfortable is a WIN. And if you are being bullied….you need more WINS.
- Don’t listen to those around you that say ignore the bully. Parents included. DO SOMETHING. They don’t even know what to do. They aren’t going through what you are going through, so it’s not urgent for them at all. Let’s face it most people don’t empathize with others. Even those that were bullied. All they may know is they aren’t going through it themselves. It’s your problem. In fact, they may tell you to ignore the bully because that what they would do. They’ve got no clue. You know ignoring doesn’t work, so don’t do it NOT FOR ANOTHER DAY!
- Don’t rely on bystanders to help you. HELP YOURSELF. If your bullying is/was public at any time, you know more than anyone that people watched it happen. They didn’t step in. Why should they? It’s really NOT their problem. Why would you even want someone to possibly risk themselves for you. I’m not arguing whether they ‘should or shouldn’t’ help you. I’m just saying that you shouldn’t rely on them. RELY ON YOURSELF.
Bullying is tough. I’ve been bullied and I stopped it. HOW did I stop it? I STOOD UP to my bully. I do not recommend that. My bully was bigger than I was, and stronger than I was. I was a nice kid, not rough, not tough. My bully was the OPPOSITE! He physically was better and more capable than I was. I did not ‘win’ that battle, but I became battle tested. I know knew what I could handle.
The fear of being pummeled out of existence, quickly went away after that.
Do not retaliate against the bully. Do not try to give them some severe punishment, no person should suffer. There isn’t any fairness in that, and it’s just unReasonable.
It comes down to you.
Become stronger, more confident. It doesn’t come overnight. Take some time to strengthen yourself. Strengthen your mind, and use the techniques above, to let the WORLD know who the bully is. Let them know who is protecting the bully, out them as the JERK’s they are.
Reasonably grow, Reasonably change, and Always Reasonably Defend Yourself!
Until Next Time Team Reason!