Are you or someone you know being bullied? Here are 10 tips to help.

The experience of being bullied can feel isolating, scary, and cause serious harm. You are not alone. At least 1 in 3 Canadian students have reported being bullied (cite). That could include 10 students in a single classroom. In this post, you will find 10 tips to use if you or someone you know are being bullied. Choose which ones work best for you.

Start with yourself

1. Understand that it is not your fault

You deserve to be treated with kindness and respect. It is never okay for someone to bully you.

2. Practice self-care

Do something to take care of yourself, especially if you are feeling down. Write in a journal, read a book you love, chat with a friend, listen to soothing music, create art, whatever you are into.

Choose your response

3. Don’t give the bully what they want

Bullies are looking for a reaction, so don’t give them one. They are waiting for you to cry, shake, or avoid eye contact. If they don’t get what they want, they are less likely to continue their behaviour. Take a deep breath and count backwards from 10, 20, or 100, whatever it takes.

4. Keep your distance

When you see a bully heading your way, walk away from them. If you are in a situation where you cannot escape the bully, for example if they are in the same class as you, try sitting away from them or ask your teacher (see tip # 8) to put you in different groups.

5. Be assertive

Turn your body towards the bully, look them in the eye, and with a firm voice tell them to stop.

Gather allies

6. Surround yourself with positive people

Take a good look at your friendships to figure out which ones are worth keeping. Make friends you can count on to look out for you and support you, then say goodbye to frenemies.

7. Plan with your friends

If you have a good friend, talk about what you could both do to deter the bully. Speak up for them and ask them to do the same for you. Be mindful that you don’t resort to bullying the person that was bullying you.

8. Talk to a trusted adult

There are many people in your life who are there to support you. For example, reach out to a parent or caregiver, family member, teacher, school counsellor, youth worker, Big Sister, Study Buddy, or Go Girls Mentor. You can also always call the Kids Help Phone anytime to speak to someone who will listen, 1-800-668-6868 (

9. Report

Keep reporting the bullying until someone listens, then keep reporting every time it happens.

Be part of the bigger community

10. Take a stand against bullying

Remember that you are not alone, even if you feel isolated, there are many others who also experience bullying. Stand together. Pink Shirt Day is a great way to show our solidarity against bullying, but don’t let that support disappear when the pink shirts are put away. Create a community of allies.

& a few tips for cyberbullying…

  • Take a screenshot of the conversation/text/post as proof of what the bully said and show a trusted adult
  • Block the bully on social media
  • Take a break and do something that you enjoy away from social media such as spending time in nature with a good friend or family member

Most people will experience a form of bullying at some point in their lives. If you or someone you know is being bullied, remember: start with yourself, choose your response, gather allies, and be part of the bigger community. Together we can.

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