Has someone let you down and made you feel humiliated in front of others? Is there someone who makes you feel like you have to win or pay to protect yourself from them?
Before starting this article, I want to share one incident with you all. This incident is from my school days. I use to keep quiet. Can you guess why? I was a wallflower because I used to stammer! My classmates made fun of me whenever I spoke. Even the teachers did not allow me to read because I stammered a lot. I think you must have understood what I am talking about?
Yes, the topic is: Bullying in School.
But wait a minute! Can’t bullying happen in college, in the workplace, and in adulthood? Yes, I think it can. I know it can.
Recently, a parent asked me, “Is it possible for a teacher to harass a student?” In essence, he was saying, “My son is being bullied by a teacher, but I don’t know what to do about it.” We have had a few negative experiences with teachers over the years and it definitely feels like bullying.
The behavior is very similar: one person tries to take power over another person in a negative, hurtful, or abusive way. So is it “bullying” for a teacher to treat a student this way?
Let’s talk about exactly what Bullying is:
The dictionary defines bullying as, “Someone who keeps doing or saying things to have power over another person.”
Let’s see the types of bullying that happens in school:
- Verbal bullying includes name-calling, making fun of, cracking jokes at another person, etc.
- Physical bullying includes pushing, shoving, pinching, hitting, etc.
- Social bullying includes spreading rumors, excluding people from events, etc.
- Cyberbullying includes disseminating private information through texts, emails, etc.
Sometimes we’re bullied by our own friends, and we don’t even realize it. You have a group of friends who are all mad at you for some reason, and they isolate you from your group. If they deliberately ignore you, you will see how they approach and do their best to show that they are ignoring you. A week later, you all become friends again and are mad at the next person.
Let’s come back to my life story of handling bullying. I had two options: either to give up and remain that shy, lonely, introverted person or to overcome the fear of bullying.
I chose the second option, and now I really feel delighted about choosing that step at that time. Although, I have been bullied for approximately 6-7 years.
Below are the methods I have taken to overcome bullying. You can do the same.
Do not resort to direct attack
Never resort to direct attack or bullying if someone intimidates you because that is what the person bullying wants. He wants you to act up and defend yourself, and if you do so, you are only going to suffer.
“Don’t bully a bully, because, in the end, you will become a bully yourself.”
Tell the bully to stop and walk away calmly
Believe it or not, it can be very effective. Practice what you have to say with a friend, an adult, or yourself in front of the mirror. Practice speaking firmly and directly with confidence in your voice. Tell others that you think you can earn respect, and encourage others to stand up for themself.
Talking to adults
We are often afraid to tell someone because we don’t want to appear weak or ashamed. Don’t keep it in your heart! Just share it with someone you trust very much like your parents, friends, cousins, etc.
It sounds intimidating at first, but adults can help you stop bullying and fix it. You are not guilty of anything; the person bullying you is. So don’t let your self-doubt and sense of guilt stop you from confiding in loved ones.
Understand that it’s not your fault
Nobody deserves to be bullied! Don’t blame yourself. Whatever happens in life, you are not to blame for being bullied. We live in a society in which we are confronted with stereotypes, prejudice, and discrimination. None of us are left from facing these social grievances. Bullies intimidate because they can. Make it so that they can’t
Whatever the situation is in life, always stand courageously. Face the fear. Be in control so the harasser doesn’t have it. If you are confident and behave you don’t care, no one will be able to bring you down with harsh words and actions.
You are not alone; we’re all stuck in this together.
This is how I coped up with bullying. I believe that you and many others like you and me can too.
In a Nutshell
If another student is bullying your child, or if you see a teacher abusing power, report each incident to the school so that it can be recorded. Meet directly with the school administration. Also, interact with a positive attitude and make it clear that you want a positive outcome for your child. After all, all children deserve a safe environment where they will NOT be bullied or abused.