Bullying can take many forms:
- being called names or teased.
- being hit, pushed, pulled, pinched or kicked.
- having your belongings taken from you.
- being forced to hand over money / mobile phone.
- being ignored or left out.
- being attacked, teased or called names because of religion, colour, sexuality, disability, appearance or gender.
- receiving abusive text messages or emails.
- social network abuse
- being forced to do something you do not want to.
Bullying is the most common problem a child will have to face. Bullying can be deliberately hurtful behaviour repeated often over a period of time or a single occasion where someone deliberately intimidates or harasses another.
A Childline survey showed that half of primary school children and one in four secondary children said they had been bullied within the last year. It should also be pointed out that from the children surveyed 15% of primary school children and 12% of secondary school children who said that they had been bullied, had bullied others themselves.
ABEL strongly favours pro-active workshops to highlight to young people there are two sides to bullying and show that whither a young person is being bullied or is the bully, they can be helped and bullying stopped. Bullying behaviour of any kind must be challenged.Parents,pupils and teachers expect bullies to be punished but in many cases punishment will be ineffective and inappropriate. That is why schools are increasingly adopting strategies such as no-blame, shared concern, peer support and circle time.