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by Zoey Jones

Some of us are lucky and never have to deal with being bullied, but the odds are, everyone will be bullied in some way at some point in their life. When I was the victim of Reese's girl gang, I quickly understood the helplessness and humiliation of anyone who has to live through this kind of nightmare. The bully steals your identity and makes you feel worthless and powerless to change the situation. For some, like Sarah, their self-esteem is pushed so low that suicide may seem like the only option.

There have been horrible events over the last few years that can been directly linked to bullying. Violent outbursts at schools, beatings, suicides and even the murder of teens by other teens have occurred, all as a result of bullying.

I was lucky enough to have a good friend and my family to help me through, but what about the silent victims? Maybe they need to know that they have choices and that they have a right to speak up, because the only way to stop bullying is to know when you are being bullied and to ask for help.

Know when you are being bullied. Bullying is:

  • Physical violence and attacks
  • Verbal taunts, name-calling and put-downs
  • Threats and intimidation
  • Theft - of money and possessions
  • Being deliberately left out of a peer group

Know your bully. Bullies are generally people who are:

  • Physically strong
  • Very confident and outgoing (extroverts)
  • Leaders
  • Aggressive
  • Are used to seeing aggressive behaviour in their homes and lives
  • Aren't very nice

It isn't easy to admit you are being bullied, but the best thing you can do is tell someone – your family, your teachers or your friends. But it's not enough to just have victim's speak up. Only if we all work together will we stop bullying. Silence never solves a problem, so find your voice and start talking and admit that bullying is not cool – ever!

Want more info? Click here to go to Resources.

 
 

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