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The following Anti-Bullying information on this web site is evidence-based materials provided by various Anti-Bullying organizations and other reliable resources.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                 

   Help Stop Bullying!

Did you know that Bullying affects over 160,000 kids over the U.S?

Every day, thousands of kids are afraid to go to school because of bullies. A bully is someone who intentionally hurts another person by using abusive words, by excluding others or by using physical threats or violence. Studies show that bullying causes major problems for children, including depression, low self-esteem and truancy. Without intervention, bullies also suffer. As adults, they require more support from government agencies, have more court convictions, use more mental health services and are more prone to alcoholism.

Most of the bullying occurs in or near school buildings. Even though great efforts have recently been undertaken to make schools safer, the threat of bullies is often overlooked. When a child does not feel safe at school—for whatever reason—every aspect of the child’s education is affected. Children know when their school unofficially tolerates bullying. They feel anxious about their safety, and may even begin avoiding classes or refusing to attend school at all. Even those who are not active bullies or victims can be affected. Studies show that children who simply witness bullying incidents experience significant fear and anxiety.

Adopting a zero-tolerance bullying policy can help schools create safe, caring environments where children feel they can be heard. Students who are relaxed can focus more energy on learning and participating in their education. In addition to taking a tough stand against bullying, schools also must educate staff and students on the dynamics of bullying behavior. For instance, males usually bully by using taunts and physical violence, while females bully through gossip and exclusion. Understanding the various faces of bullying can make it easier for educators to recognize the behavior and respond quickly.

As serious and damaging as bullying is, most victims do not report it. Even those who report it run the risk of being disregarded. Many adults do not know how to intervene in bullying situations. In a recent study conducted by the American Justice Department, 25% of students reported that teachers intervened in bullying situations, while 71% of teachers believed that they had intervened. Clearly, there is a strong need for bully prevention education. Teachers, support staff, parent groups, student councils and administrators must join together and take action to stop bullying. In the end, dealing proactively with bullying behavior helps everyone involved.

   Learning Objectives

After presenting our sessions, your students will be able to:

   What is a Bully?

 A bully is a person who hurts someone else on purpose. Anyone can be a bully, including a stranger, a friend, a brother or sister, a young person or an adult.

Bullying can take many different forms, including:

• hitting, kicking or pushing someone

• threatening to hurt someone

• stealing, hiding or ruining someone's things

• making someone do things he or she doesn’t want to do

• name-calling

• teasing

• insulting

• refusing to talk to someone (the “silent treatment”)

• spreading lies, gossip or rumors about someone

If you’ve been bullied, you’re not alone. Practically everyone has had an experience with a bully at some time. It’s very important to remember that it’s not your fault.

-The Bully’s problems 

Bullying is a result of the bully’s problems, not your own.

Common problems for a bully include:

• feelings of not fitting in

• problems at home, including divorce and abuse

• being bullied by parents, older siblings or others

• fear of being picked on

• wanting to seem tough

• feelings of anger, pain and low self-worth

• a need to control other people

• lack of caring about how others feel

• peer pressure from other bullies

How to Help A Child Overcome Bullying?

The prevalence of bullying is hard to ignore. Research indicates between twenty-five and thirty-three percent of children ages twelve to eighteen have experienced some form of bullying. Bullying should never be dismissed as simply ‘kids being kids,’ as it can have significant long-term consequences for victims, leading to loneliness, low self-esteem, depression, and anxiety. Children who are bullied often suffer academically and socially due to the stress caused by bullying. Bullied children may try to avoid the activities where the bullying occurs, leading to decreased school and social participation. If your child is a victim of bullying, there are several steps you can take as a parent to work through the situation with them. Let’s review these steps now!

If you suspect your child is being bullied, first do what you can to understand the situation. Bullying typically happens when adults are not around, or when witnesses who are likely to speak up are not present. Many bullied children may be hesitant to speak up out of fear or embarrassment. It is important to get as many facts as possible, so encourage open and honest communication with your child. Try to learn about the situation from as many sources as possible, including your child, friends, or other trusted adults. Do not rush to judgment until you have had time to learn about the situation.

Encourage Your Child To Express Themselves:

Open communication with your child is key to understanding and dealing with a bullying problem. Encourage your child to express themselves so you can gain a full understanding of the situation. Your child should feel comfortable talking about the problem and how it makes them feel. You are your child’s ally in overcoming the bullying, and they need your encouragement. Allow your child to process their feelings and talk through the situation when they are comfortable. Provide an understanding ear, and ask them how you can help. If they need more help than you can offer, a counselor can be a valuable resource.

The way in which a victim responds to bullying is crucial. Read on to reveal how to teach this to your child.

Teach Your Child How To Respond:

As you and your child work through the bullying problem together, it is crucial teach them how to respond to bullying. Never encourage your child to fight back physically, as they could get hurt or in serious trouble. Make sure they know which adults to reach out to if bullying occurs. Adults such as a teacher, principal, school counselor or bus driver can all help handle bullying situations. Encourage your child to implement the buddy system and surround themselves with friends. Teach your child to walk away from a bullying situation calmly, rather than letting the bully get a reaction out them. This tactic does not mean the bullying should be ignored, as all bullying should be reported and dealt with, but it does give a sense of power back to your child.

Contacting the appropriate authorities is often a key part of dealing with bullying. Read on to determine which route to take.

Contact The Right Authorities:

If a crime has been committed or someone is in immediate danger due to bullying, contact the authorities or dial 911. When bullying occurs during school hours or on school property, promptly contact the right authorities, starting with your child’s teacher and principal. You can also contact the school counselor and district superintendent. If bullying occurs on the bus, also be sure to contact the district transportation officials and your child’s bus driver. Each state addresses bullying in its own laws and educational policies. You can contact your state’s Department of Education to find out more about anti-bullying laws in your state. If you feel your school is not handling bullying appropriately, the Department of Education in your state is another resource you can use.

Don’t let bullying take your child down.

Boost Your Child’s Self-Confidence:

Bullying can be detrimental to a victim’s self-esteem. Thankfully, there are many things parents can do to boost their child’s self-confidence. First, remind your child the bullying was not their fault and encourage your child to spend time with close friends who love and support them. Support your child’s interests and hobbies. For instance, they may excel at sports, music, or drama, so encourage these activities to boost self-confidence. Help your child find what they are good at, and give them a chance to build those skills and really shine. The negative impacts of the bullying will be reduced if your child has a social network where they feel valued and included. If your child is lonely, help them find an extracurricular or community activity where they can start to build a social group.

Adult Bullying

You may not hear a lot about adult bullying, but it is a problem. Read this article to learn more about different types of adult bullies and get some ideas on how to deal with an adult bully. Adult bullying is a serious problem and may require legal action.

One would think that as people mature and progress through life, that they would stop behaviors of their youth. Unfortunately, this is not always the case. Sadly, adults can be bullies, just as children and teenagers can be bullies. While adults are more likely to use verbal bullying as opposed to physical bullying, the fact of the matter is that adult bullying exists. The goal of an adult bully is to gain power over another person and make himself or herself the dominant adult. They try to humiliate victims, and “show them who is boss.”

There are several different types of adult bullies, and it helps to know how they operate:

Narcissistic Adult Bully: This type of adult bully is self-centered and does not share empathy with others. Additionally, there is little anxiety about consequences. He or she seems to feel good about him or herself, but, has a brittle narcissism that requires putting others down

Impulsive Adult Bully : Adult bullies in this category are more spontaneous and plan their bullying out less. Even if consequences are likely, this adult bully has a hard time restraining his or her behavior. In some cases, this type of bullying may be unintentional, resulting in periods of stress, or when the bully is actually upset or concerned about something unconnected with the victim

Physical Bully : While adult bullying rarely turns to physical confrontation, there are, nonetheless, bullies that use physicality. In some cases, the adult bully may not actually physically harm the victim, but may use the threat of harm, or physical domination through looming. Additionally, a physical bully may damage or steal a victim’s property, rather than physically confronting the victim.

Verbal Adult Bully : Words can be quite damaging. Adult bullies who use this type of tactic may start rumors about the victim or use sarcastic or demeaning language to dominate or humiliate another person. This subtle type of bullying also has the advantage – to the bully – of being difficult to document. However, the emotional and psychological impacts of verbal bullying can be felt quite keenly and can result in reduced job performance and even depression.

Secondary Adult Bully : This is someone who does not initiate the bullying but joins in so that he or she does not actually become a victim down the road. Secondary bullies may feel bad about what they are doing but are more concerned about protecting themselves.

Work Place Bullying: can make life quite miserable and difficult. Supervisors should be made aware of adult bullies, since they can disrupt productivity, create a hostile work environment (opening the company to the risk of a law suit) and reduce morale.

It is important to note, though, that there is little you can do about an adult bully, other than ignore and try to avoid, after reporting the abuse to a supervisor. This is because adult bullies are often in a set pattern. They are not interested in working things out and they are not interested in compromise. Rather, adult bullies are more interested in power and domination. They want to feel as though they are important and preferred, and they accomplish this by bringing others down. There is very little you can do to change an adult bully, beyond working within the confines of laws and company regulations that are set up. The good news is that, if you can document the bullying, there are legal and civil remedies for harassment, abuse and other forms of bullying. But you have to be able to document the case.

Adult bullies were often either bullies as children or bullied as children. Understanding this about them may be able to help you cope with the behavior. But there is little you can do about it beyond doing your best to ignore the bully, report his or her behavior to the proper authorities, and document the instances of bullying so that you can take legal action down the road if necessary.