Bullying bystanders

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  • Bullying is a serious problem and one which parents need be aware. Listen to what your child has to say, being a good listener is an important piece of your role when your child is being bullied. Most important thing parents can do is help build a strong sense of self and help your child feel good about himself by finding something he can do well. I am a parent and I'm worried and I don't want that any kid to experience this. As a way of helping everyone especially the parents, who still find it quite hard to manage issues like this, I found this great application which featured a safety app which gets me connected to a Safety Network or escalate my call to the nearest 911 when needed, it has other cool features that are helpful for your kids with just a press of a Panic Button. Check it here: www.PersonalSafetySystem.com
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Bullying bystanders

  1. 1. Bullying! What Can Bystanders Do?
  2. 2. What can I do if I see bullying? <ul><li>The following are strategies you can use to prevent, interrupt, or stop mistreatment </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Distracting </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Balancing </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Supporting </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Reasoning </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Getting help </li></ul></ul>
  3. 3. Distracting <ul><li>“A girl was being cornered at her locker by a few other girls who were bullying and scaring her. I went up to one of the bullies and started a conversation. When I did this, the girl being bullied slowly left the situation.” </li></ul><ul><li>- Sandra, eighth grade, New York </li></ul>
  4. 4. Distracting <ul><li>Probably the simplest action </li></ul><ul><li>The act of changing the subject or focus of an interaction, often with humor or a simple request or comment </li></ul><ul><li>Can be used to stop exclusion, put-downs, bullying, unwanted physical contact, and sometimes even acts against the school community </li></ul><ul><li>Although it interrupts an act of cruelty, it does not resolve the underlying problem or issue between the target and the aggressor </li></ul><ul><li>After using a distraction, bystanders might say or do other things that are likely to have more lasting affects </li></ul><ul><ul><li>(Look at Supporting) </li></ul></ul>1
  5. 5. Put-down Situation <ul><li>In class, a small group of girls was sitting behind a fellow student named Christina. They were talking about Christina behind her back but loud enough for Christina to hear them: “Did you see what Christina is wearing today? I can’t believe she would wear that.” Another girl said: “Yeah, looks like she buys her clothes at the Salvation Army.” Then they all laughed. A bystander interrupted and distracted the group by asking them, “Hey, guys, did you see American Idol last night? (Pause) You didn’t? I can’t believe you missed it. </li></ul><ul><li>It was awesome. It’s on again tonight. </li></ul><ul><li>You’ve got to check it out.” Then the </li></ul><ul><li>students began to talk about something </li></ul><ul><li>else. </li></ul>
  6. 6. Bullying Situation <ul><li>A group of guys were cornering Jacob near his locker at school. Jacob looked nervous and afraid. A bystander distracted in this situation by saying: “Hey, guys, did you all get what Mr. Adams told us to do for our assignment? Were we supposed to do all the questions at the end of the lessons, or just the even ones?” In other situations, bystanders have said things such as, “Hey, guys, look out, the principal’s around the corner!” or “Hey, I heard they’re giving away bags of chips in Ms. Garcia’s room!” </li></ul>
  7. 7. Balancing <ul><li>“ A bunch of us were just hanging out on the steps in front of school like we always do. A group of Mexican kids walked by, and one of my friends made a racist comment, something about like how they’re a bunch of low lifes, and I could just tell that some of the other people were going to go off on that. So before any of them jumped in, I said, “Yeah, well, I dunno about that, but you know Miguel, man, he played soccer with me, and he kicked some butt. He was one of the best guys on our team.” A couple of people laughed because it was almost funny, but then the guy who’d started it came back with: “Yeah, that’s Miguel, but the rest of them are scum.” And I just said something kinda casual like, “well, whatever, think what you want, but it’s not what I know,” and left it like that. Then is started talking with one of the guys about something else, and it just kinda ended. And since then, they haven’t been saying that kind of stuff any more.” </li></ul><ul><li>- Scott, tenth grade, Colorado </li></ul>2
  8. 8. Balancing <ul><li>When we’re in the presence of friends who are “talking trash about someone” or spreading rumors, we usually say nothing or add other negative comments about the target </li></ul><ul><li>You can counter a negative comment with a positive comment in order to balance put-downs </li></ul><ul><li>It does not involve telling someone that he/she is wrong or directly challenging the person who made the comments </li></ul><ul><li>Simple act of offering a comment that “puts-up” the “put-down” </li></ul><ul><li>Works best when the target of the put-down or rumor is not around to hear it </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Sometimes the target is around (Look at Supporting) </li></ul></ul>
  9. 9. Put-down Situation <ul><li>In one situation a student said, “I can’t believe Margie. She thinks she’s so-o-o smart. She is such a stuck-up snow.” A bystander interjected: “You know what, Margie was in my summer program, and I saw her a lot. She was really easy to talk to and funny! I mean, she had some hilarious stories.” Bystanders can act quickly with a balancing comment before the negative talk can get worse or people start believing it. </li></ul>
  10. 10. Supporting <ul><li>When a student has been mistreated, he/she are put into an unhealthy and unstable emotional state </li></ul><ul><ul><li>When left alone, the hurt they feel can become more painful and affect their self-concept and self-esteem </li></ul></ul><ul><li>Exhibiting empathy is a large part of the power of showing support </li></ul><ul><li>The effect of support is much greater than it initially may appear. </li></ul><ul><li>Supportive comments or gestures can make a big difference and have a significant effect on the person who needs to hear something supporting or validating </li></ul><ul><li>Does not involve challenging the aggressor directly or putting them down </li></ul><ul><ul><li>If someone is being excluded, you wouldn’t want to support by saying, “Don’t worry about them. They’re just a bunch of losers!” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>A statement like that adds to an unhealthy climate </li></ul></ul></ul><ul><ul><ul><li>It may also create a problem later and cause a situation to escalate if it gets back to someone that a bystander called the aggressors “a bunch of losers.” </li></ul></ul></ul>3
  11. 11. Supporting <ul><li>“ I intervened in a situation when my math teacher was putting down a male classmate and saying things like: ‘You’re too dumb’ and ‘You’ll never graduate.’ I used a distraction in this situation by asking the teacher for some help with understanding the homework assignment she just gave. The teacher answered my question and walked back to her desk. Then I supported the student by saying: ‘Hey, don’t sweat her. I know you’re a smart guy, and you’re going to graduate with all of us.’ Now that student does his work, and the teacher doesn’t pick on him anymore.” </li></ul>
  12. 12. After a Put-down <ul><li>Can be used in combination with another action, such as Distracting </li></ul><ul><ul><li>After distracting the aggressor during a putdown, a bystander turned to the target and said, “Hey, she says mean stuff like that sometimes. I hope you don’t think that comment is true. I don’t.” </li></ul></ul>
  13. 13. After Bullying <ul><li>Showing support can help the target bounce back more quickly </li></ul><ul><li>Can also help target understand that he/she is not alone, which helps prevent the further loss of self-esteem </li></ul><ul><li>When aggressors see a target being supported by someone else, their perception of that target can change: they are less likely to see that student as vulnerable and therefore less likely to bully this person. </li></ul>
  14. 14. Things You Can Say <ul><li>“ You know, I’ve been left out of things before too, and it stinks.” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Shows empathy and understanding </li></ul></ul><ul><li>“ Hey, they’ve left a lot of other people out of things before. They’re just like that sometimes.” </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Helps target not take it personally </li></ul></ul><ul><li>“ I saw what she did, and that was really mean.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Do you know he’s done that to other people too? I’ve seen him. Hang in there, okay?” </li></ul><ul><li>“ It’s really annoying when people do that kind of thing. It’s happened to me.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ Wow, people can be mean sometimes. I don’t like what they did either.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ That sucked, what they did. I hope you don’t think everyone is like that around here.” </li></ul><ul><li>“ That was a cheap shot. Are you okay?” </li></ul>
  15. 15. Reasoning <ul><li>“ These two girls were arguing, and they were going to fight. I told them that what they were arguing about wasn’t worth fighting over. They would lose their grip to Magic Mountain and would get in trouble, so they may not be able to graduate from middle school this year. The two stopped, and they never got into a fight again.” </li></ul><ul><li>- Adrian, sixth grade, California </li></ul>4
  16. 16. Reasoning <ul><li>When someone becomes upset, the focus of brain activity goes from thinking to feeling and reflexes </li></ul><ul><ul><li>They have trouble thinking clearly </li></ul></ul><ul><li>By using reasoning, bystanders can help someone think and not just react, which could prevent this person from doing something he/she might later regret </li></ul><ul><li>Can you think of a time when you were so upset or angry that you said or did something you later regretted? </li></ul><ul><li>Bringing attention to an act of cruelty can also help highlight its ugliness and may help an aggressor see that some actions are not within acceptable norms or not what they really want to be doing. </li></ul>
  17. 17. Reasoning <ul><li>“ One eighth-grade girl wanted to get back at another person by spreading a rumor. A bystander reasoned with her by saying, “Is that really true about her?” She continued by saying, “I’ve had rumors spread about me, and it upset me when I heard them. How would you feel if someone spread an untrue rumor about you?” In that moment, the girl may not have cared about how she would feel or how the person she wanted to hurt would feel; she may have even been intent on hurting the other person. But by speaking to the girl about her plans, the bystander got her to pause, rethink her plan, and choose a different action. </li></ul>
  18. 18. Reasoning <ul><li>Through reasoning, bystanders help aggressors know that other options are available. They help show that the consequences could really matter to the aggressor, such as being grounded, suspended, or not able to play with the rest of the team at the upcoming game. By reasoning with aggressors, bystanders help them see that their actions might not be worth the consequences, thereby influencing aggressors to make a different choice. </li></ul>
  19. 19. Have an Exit Strategy <ul><li>Remove yourself from a situation in which you feel uncomfortable. Put your hands up at chest level and close to your body, with your palms facing others and say something like: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Hey, Sean, just tryin’ to keep things cool.” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ Look, I just don’t want to see you guys get kicked out of school; waste of time, man.” </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>“ I’d hate to see you do something you’d regret later, but it’s your call.” </li></ul></ul><ul><li>If you’ve come across a situation you are not willing or able to handle or that is too dangerous, use an Exit Strategy and then find the appropriate adult help. </li></ul><ul><li>DO NOT TRY TO BREAK UP A FIGHT! </li></ul><ul><li>Sometimes, things don’t go as planned and these strategies don’t work. And sometimes , the aggressor (or even the target) can turn on the bystander! When this happens, your goal should be from helping others to self-protection. </li></ul>
  20. 20. Getting Help <ul><li>Involves taking action by communicating with an adult whom you trust to help deal with situations that are beyond your own comfort zone </li></ul><ul><li>Snitching vs. Getting Help </li></ul><ul><ul><li>Snitching is when a student goes to an adult to get someone in trouble, usually about something small </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Getting help is when a student goes to an adult to prevent or get someone out of trouble, usually about something big </li></ul></ul>5
  21. 21. Common Situations You Won’t Want to Handle On Your Own <ul><li>Weapons on campus </li></ul><ul><li>Threats </li></ul><ul><li>Abuse </li></ul><ul><li>Drug or alcohol use or abuse </li></ul><ul><li>Gang activity </li></ul><ul><li>Eating disorders </li></ul><ul><li>Drug use and dealing </li></ul><ul><li>Fights </li></ul><ul><li>Family issues like divorce, death, or abuse </li></ul><ul><li>Suicide or depression </li></ul><ul><li>Vandalism </li></ul><ul><li>Stealing </li></ul><ul><li>Self-mutilation or cutting </li></ul>
  22. 22. Getting Help <ul><li>If you’re still worried that you’ll be targeted for getting an adult involved, there are steps we can take: </li></ul><ul><ul><li>When you’ve told an adult you trust, ask that they don’t tell others that it was you who asked for help. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Leave a note on the desk or in the box of a teacher, counselor, or principal. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Make a phone call to a hot line or to the police. </li></ul></ul><ul><ul><li>Tell your parents and have one of them make a call to the school. </li></ul></ul>
  23. 23. Getting Help <ul><li>There are many examples of students not bringing information forward to adults that have resulted in tragedy. In most school shootings, at least some students knew about the attacker’s plans before they were carried out, but these students did not share that information with people who might have been able to help. Students maintained the code of silence, and it cost many their lives. </li></ul>

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