If you’ve been bullied before, chances are you’re not alone. In fact, bullying is a worldwide problem that has taken its toll on the U.S. What is most troubling is that there is no way of knowing who gets bullied.
“People who get bullied tend to let others get away with it and don’t report”, said School Counselor Ms. Toucheque.
But how do we prevent this from happening? That’s the question that schools in the U.S are trying to find an answer for.
In recent years, studies have shown how damaging bullying can be. Many believe that the problem has increased and want to put an end to this tragedy. According to KidsInfoBits.com, nearly 30 percent of all teens report that they have been bullied. For gay teens, the scope of the problem is truly staggering–9 out of 10 gay teens say they have been bullied in school, often violently and relentlessly. However, gay teens aren’t the only people being bullied.
“Anyone that doesn’t fit the bully’s requirements is an absolute target to getting bullied”, said 7th grader Emilia Ambriz.
However, it’s not just the victim who can report the problem; bystanders can do their part by reporting too. In fact according to KidsInfoBits.com, 85% of bullying acts have a bystander, but nearly 75% of them don’t do anything to help the situation. The bystander plays an important role when it comes to bullying. Each and everyone of us has been a bystander, because we’ve all witnessed someone being bullied. As a bystander we have the power to speak up and change things.
Furthermore, students are taught to ignore confrontations and walk away. But when students turn their backs on aggressive behavior they send a signal showing that bullying is okay. We all know that when we see bullying, we should stand up for the victim. But it’s not always easy to do so. People often do nothing because they’re scared of becoming the bully’s next target. The bystanders have to decide whether the situation is safe enough to step in.
Luckily, schools across the nation are joining together to put a stop to bullying. Toucheque says here are ways you can stop bullying:
1. HELP OTHERS WHO ARE BEING BULLIED.
Walk or sit with them if they’re alone. Let them know you think bullying is wrong. Encourage them to talk to a teacher or another adult about it.
2. PREVENT GOSSIP FROM SPREADING.
Tell the person who is spreading the rumors that it’s wrong to do so. Think about how you would feel if people were talking about you.
3. GET FRIENDS INVOLVED.
Talk with your friends about bullying and about these tips.
4. BE AWARE OF YOUR SCHOOL’S BULLYING POLICY.
Ask teachers to speak to students about ways to reduce bullying incidents, especially in places where bullying often happens.
5. MAKE NEW STUDENTS FEEL WELCOME.
Think about how you would feel leaving your friends and going to a new school.
6.REFUSE TO BE A BYSTANDER.
If people are laughing with a bully, tell them they’re contributing to the problem. If your friend is doing the bullying, get him or her to move on to something else.
7. RESPECT OTHERS’ DIFFERENCES
Learn to tolerate differences, even if you don’t agree with the person’s choices.
8. JUST TALK
Talk to someone that you trust and can help you.
If you don’t feel comfortable reporting in person, call Safe 2 Tell at 1-877-542-7299 or visit their website at safe2tell.org
10. BE INFORMED
For further information on bullying go to bullying.org