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For kids

What is Bullying

The dictionary says bullying is to hurt, intimidate or persecute others.

Bullying can be many different things - not just the things we do to others but the things we say. Bullying is deliberate and is intended to upset others.

Bullying can include:

  • Physical violence - Pushing, hitting, hurting others.
  • Teasing - Name calling, racist comments, making fun of others because they are different or just saying things that are not true.
  • Exclusion – You can’t play with us anymore.
  • Threatening – If you don’t do this I will do that or don’t tell anyone or you will regret it.
  • Damaging your property.
  • Taking things – Lunch or lunch money are common ones but can include your new pens or other property.
  • Nasty body language – nasty faces or rude gestures.
  • Internet abuse.
  • Phone/Cell phone abuse – Includes nasty phone calls, nasty or threatening texts, upsetting images/photos.

What to do if you are being bullied

The most important thing to remember if you are being bullied is this:

IT IS NOT YOUR FAULT THAT YOU ARE BEING BULLIED AND IT IS NOT RIGHT!

Do not blame yourself and do not believe the lies bullies say about you.

Often if you ignore the bully the bullying will stop. Just take no notice of the name calling or walk away when others start picking on you – it may be hard to do this but when the bully sees that they are having no effect on you often the bullying will stop.

If this does not work go up to the bully and say; "Please stop calling me that or doing that. I don't like it and I want you to stop!"

IF THE BULLYING DOES NOT STOP YOU MUST TELL SOMEONE!

If you do not tell anyone nothing will change. Here are some good ideas about how to do this:

  • Tell a teacher or another adult you trust, or tell your family.
  • If you are scared to tell a teacher on your own ask a friend to go with you.
  • Keep speaking up until something is done to stop the bullying and you feel safe and happy again.

IF YOU SEE SOMEONE ELSE BEING BULLIED:

  • Be a friend to the person being bullied.
  • Offer to help them tell a teacher or offer to do it for them if they are too scared.
  • Don’t watch, laugh or join in with bullies if you know inside it is wrong.

REMEMBER TO ALWAYS TREAT OTHERS HOW YOU WANT TO BE TREATED.

Text Bullying

Receiving nasty texts isn’t much fun and they may not just come at school time. Nasty texts can be sent after school, at night and in the weekends.

But there is something you can do about it!

  • Parents can help. If you constantly receive messages that upset or offend you tell your parents so together you can knock the problem on the head before it gets out of hand.
  • Do not give your phone details to anyone you do not know.
  • Do not reply to any text that makes you feel uncomfortable.
  • If you get a text from an unknown number do not reply.
  • Contact your mobile network supplier immediately if you get any nasty texts. They can contact the sender for you and if necessary block that number from your phone. If the offending continues they can disconnect the bully’s phone.
  • For more advice you can contact Netsafe. Their website includes information on text bullying and what you can do about it. You can contact Netsafe lots of different ways: 
    Email: queries@netsafe.org.nz 
    Phone: 0508 NetSafe (0508 638 723)

Cyber Bullying

Bullying is hard to deal with, and when it’s online the person being mean to you is doing it in front of the whole world. But there are things you can do if you are being cyberbullied to make the bullying stop.

  • Talk to an adult you trust about the problem, like a parent, caregiver or teacher. They can be great support and can help you make the bullying stop.
  • Ask the person to stop. If they don’t stop after you have asked them to, make sure you don’t reply to any of their messages.
  • Gather evidence so you can show your parents, teachers or Netsafe. Take note of the address of the abusive page and try and save the mean messages. It can be a good idea to take a screenshot of the nasty comments and save it (you can do that pressing the button on your keyboard that says ‘PrtScn’ and then paste it into a word document).
  • Make a complaint to the website. Most websites have rules for people who use their website to ensure they don’t harass other people. If people break these rules they can be kicked off the site.
  • If a person is being weird or creepy tell your parents or a trusted adult. In some cases, the police may also be able to help.
  • For more advice you can contact Netsafe. Their website includes information on text bullying and what you can do about it. You can contact Netsafe lots of different ways: 
    Email: queries@netsafe.org.nz 
    Phone: 0508 NetSafe (0508 638 723)