NEED HELP NOW? 1800-448-3000
 

Fact Sheets

Forum Posts
About Violence, Sexual Abuse & Assault

View the Forums »

Stories
About Violence, Sexual Abuse & Assault

“Best friend” harrasment “Best friend” harrasment
A dream to chase A dream to chase
A helpless victim no longer A helpless victim no longer
ReachOut Forums
Fact Sheet

What to do if someone you know is being bullied


ReachOut fact sheets are written by young people for young people and edited by a mental health professional. Want to discuss the topic in more depth? Visit the ReachOut Forums.

Photo by: Shutterstock

What is bullying?

Bullying usually involves one or more people teasing, being violent towards, or harassing somebody on an ongoing basis. Bullying can happen in person and online and through cell phones. Check out the Cyberbulling fact sheet for more information.

Is someone you know being bullied?

Bullying might be difficult to recognize, as it can happen when the person is alone. People who experience bullying might be scared to talk about it, or they might feel ashamed about being bullied. This could lead them to try to hide what is going on. If you haven’t been present when a person is being hassled, some indications that he or she is being bullied are:

  • Lack of motivation;
  • Vagueness (especially when he or she is talking about certain topics);
  • Unusual behavior;
  • Physical injuries.

Take care that you don’t immediately assume that the problem is bullying. These signs might be visible for a variety of reasons, and not only because a person is being bullied. People can show these signs because of their personalities, or because they’re dealing with other issues.

What to do if you think someone is being bullied

Talk to that person. It’s a good idea to talk to the person you think is being bullied to find out more about the situation. Try to remember that the person you are talking with could be very sensitive about the situation and could be scared to talk about it.

Let that person know you care. Help boost this person’s self-confidence. If a person is being bullied, it could affect his or her confidence. It can help to let this person know that you are a friend and that you care. It can also help to point out all the great things he or she has to offer others to boost his or her self-esteem.

Include the person into your group. Making a special effort to include the person into your group could help raise the person’s confidence.

Stick up for him or her. If you see someone is being bullied, it might be helpful to say something. Take care to ensure that in trying to stick up for the person being bullied, you don’t make the situation worse or put yourself in danger.

Speak to someone. Letting someone else know about the situation can help you solve the problem. A teacher, counselor or another adult could be helpful. It might also be helpful to involve the person experiencing the bullying in the discussion. Together, you can go and talk to someone about the situation.

For more information

National Youth Violence Prevention Resource Center

Kids Health

Comments

Responses

To post a comment, you must be logged in. If you are not a member, then fill out our simple registration form.


Thanks for your comment on ReachOut.com! We moderate all comments to ensure the site is safe and supportive. Your comment should appear within 24 hours if it is approved. If you want to see if someone has replied to your comment, please come back and check out this page again.