There have always been bullies in the world. The recent attention on the subject is proof that it has effects on the victims and must be dealt with the way all social ills have in the past. Much like a surveillance camera, a community can monitor and watch for bullying and then take steps to stop it.
So how do you know if you are being bullied? If someone is causing you harm, physically or emotionally, by verbal harassment, physical contact, or through any other means of intimidation, you are a victim of bullying. This might make you feel sad or depressed. It might make you want to keep away from school or other activities you enjoy due to the bully’s presence there. You may feel there is something wrong with you or that it is your fault. This can affect your ability to do well in school and can cause problems in your other relationships.
Understand that a bully may have one or more reasons for his or her actions. There may be trouble in their home; they could have been bullied themselves; they are insecure and need to make themselves look better; and they could have no friends and wants to be sure others don’t either.
There are several things you can do to stop the bullying. There are websites with helpful information and phone numbers to call. The first and most important thing is to tell an adult that you trust. Taking a brother, sister, or friend with you for support can take the fear out of telling. Remind yourself that telling is the right thing to do; it is NOT tattle-telling. Also, if you are being bullied on the bus or at school chances are that there is a security camera system installed that can be used as an eyewitness in your case against your bully.
- The Pacer Center – is an organization which champions children with disabilities. They have designated part of their site to dealing with bullying.
- Kids Help Phone – is a Canadian website offering a toll free number for kids to talk with someone who can give them guidance. There are also other links to helpful sites and an online game for kids to play and learn about bullying.
- Bully Online – is a United Kingdom website full of resources, including a toll free number for both kids and parents, information and training for caregivers and teachers, and links to local help centers.
- Stop Bullying Now – is a division of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. The site offers information and tips for both adults and children. There are webisodes to view and games to play which help kids learn how to stop bullying.
- Kids Health Organization – is a site dealing with all kids health issues. Their page on bullying offers help, example stories on getting help, and resources for parents and children.
- Websites on Bullying – offers a listing of links to many resources on bullying and free lesson plans for teachers and parents on helping kids deal with and end bullying.
- Northern County Psychiatric Associates – has extensive information for all types of bullying, including in the workplace and online. Offers information on the specific types and causes of bullying and resources for getting help.
- McGruff – is the National Crime Prevention Council character and offers this portion of their site to help kids understand and help end bullying. There are comic books to read and a video to watch.
- Bullies to Buddies – is a website completely devoted to this issue. Written and maintained by Israel C. "Izzy" Kalman, a school psychologist since 1978. He offers free downloadable manuals and extensive helpful information on the site for people all over the world, adults and kids, who are being bullied.
- Safe Schools Ambassadors – is a program being implemented in schools to involve teenagers as peers to do their part in stopping any kind of verbal or physical harassment. This is more effective than a (security camera system), as help is immediately onsite to stop the bullying.
It has been clinically proven that bullying can cause severe emotional harm and in some instances, suicide. Whether child or adult, everyone deserves to feel safe. Everyone has to do their part to put an end to this form of abuse, and with all the resources freely available, the goal can be reached.