Bullying: how to stop it
If you’re being bullied, you may feel isolated or frightened. You may be finding it harder to make friends or to talk to people your age. You don’t have to put up with the bullying.
To stop the bullying, speak to someone. Asking for help is not a sign of weakness. It’s the first step to resolving a situation that’s not acceptable. Everyone has a right to feel safe at school, and your school is obliged to prevent all forms of bullying.
There are many people who will listen and help. Tell someone you trust, such as a parent, carer, teacher or friend. If you feel you can’t talk directly to any of these people, write them a note.
Sometimes, people think that talking to a teacher or parent will make things worse. If you’re worried about this, call ChildLine in confidence on 0800 1111, explain the situation and ask for advice. ChildLine advisers will help any child or young person whatever the problem, and they won’t judge you.
To protect yourself from bullying, ChildLine also gives this advice on its website:
- Keep a record, and save any nasty texts or emails that you’ve received.
- If possible, stay away from the bullies, or stay with a group when you don’t feel safe.
- Ask your mates to look out for you.
- Try not to fight back, as you could get into trouble or get hurt.
- Ask your school about its anti-bullying policy. This will tell you what your school should do about bullying.
Listed below are several helplines and organisations that can help you stop the bullying.
Who to contact for help
ChildLine: 0800 1111
ChildLine is a helpline and website for young people and children. You can call ChildLine confidentially at any time of day or night to talk about any worries. Calls are free from landlines and mobiles, and they won’t appear on a phone bill. You can also chat online to an adviser, or contact ChildLine by text or email – see ChildLine’s Talk to us page for all the options. ChildLine’s website has a useful section on how to cope with bullying.
Bullybusters: 0800 169 6928
Bullybusters operates a free anti-bullying helpline for anyone who’s been affected by bullying. It also has a website and message board, with sections specifically for kids and young people.
Kidscape’s website has lots of advice on bullying for children and young people, including tips on what to do if you’re bullied, on moving schools and making friends.
This website offers extensive practical advice and information for young people, and you can send them an email if you want more help.
Cybermentors is a website run by young people for young people. If you’re being cyberbullied or bullied in any other way, you can log on to the site and chat to a cybermentor. He or she will help you work out what to do next.
The government website has a section on bullying for young people, including information on what to do about bullying.
Help for specific types of bullying
This isn’t a full list. You can find many more anti-bullying organisations in the Resources section of the Anti-Bullying Alliance website, which contains all the important sources of anti-bullying information and support. Remember, you can call ChildLine on in confidence on 0800 1111 to talk about any type of bullying.
Bullying related to race, religion or culture
- ChildLine’s website has a section on racism and what you can do if you encounter racist bullying.
Bullying of young people with a learning disability
- Don’t Stick it, Stop It! This website, set up by Mencap, campaigns against the bullying of young people with learning disabilities.
Homophobic and transphobic bullying
- EACH This is a charity for young people and adults affected by homophobia and transphobia. It has a telephone helpline for young people who are experiencing homophobic or transphobic bullying. You can call Actionline on 0808 1000 143 on weekdays, 9am to 4.30pm. Calls are free from landlines and most mobiles.
- Stonewall is a charity that campaigns for equal rights for lesbians, gay men and bisexual people. Their Education for All campaign tackles homophobia and homophobic bullying in schools across the UK. On the Education for All website, you can find case studies, facts and figures about homophobic bullying in schools, as well as advice for young people and teachers.
Bullying of young carers
- Young Carers Its website has advice on what to do if you’re being bullied.
Information on this page is used with permission from the NHS Choices web site.