5 Ways to Handle a Bully

Helpful tips for your Regina George

Guys, this is a tough one. My bullies from when I was younger are forever burned into my head. I had the most popular girl declare “it’s uncool to like Skylar,” I had a girl threaten to literally kill me over IM the day before my first day of high school, and I had that same girl say my dog wasn’t cute. SADIE WAS THE MOST ADORABLE CREATURE ON EARTH. LOOK AT HER:

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How to handle a bully: god

But I’m like totally over it…. Anyway, my point is, I get it. I’ve been there and it sucks. With this article, however, I’m hoping I can make dealing with a bully a little easier. Here we go.

1. Know that what they say doesn’t define you.

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Here’s the thing, if someone is going out of their way to say hurtful things to you, it’s 100% a reflection of how they feel about themselves. No happy, secure, full of life person is going to take up their energy hurting someone else. They’d gain nothing from it. This means, that anything they have to say about you is completely invalid because it’s skewed through their own sad/angry perception of the world and themselves. The only person you should care about liking you is yourself, and everything else will fall into place from there.

2. Reality check it.

If you do find that something a bully said to you is sticking with you, and you’re starting to believe it, I suggest reality checking it. Compare their words with the truth of your life. Maybe they said, “No one likes you.” Well, let’s see if that’s true. Get out a piece of paper and start writing who likes you. Your mom, your dog, your best friend, your French teacher, the girl you babysit. See? The reality is people do like you. So suck it, bully.

3. The best reaction is no reaction.

What do bullies really want when they say something hurtful to you? Probably to get a reaction from you so they can feel their power, right? They most likely want to give themselves a little ego boost or prove to themselves they’re in control. Well, if you don’t give them the reaction, they don’t get the payoff. 1. This will confuse the hell out of them and 2. It might make them move on sooner if they’re not receiving the reward they’re looking for.

4. Talk it out.

While not giving your bully a reaction is great, this doesn’t mean you should just stuff your feelings inside. If someone’s said something to you that’s genuinely affected you, you need to process it. Talk to a parent, best friend, or therapist to work it out. And if you genuinely feel threatened, there’s no shame in speaking to someone at your school about the incident. That’s what I did when that girl threatened me over IM. Nothing big or dramatic happened by telling the school, but I felt much safer knowing they had my back.

5. Learn to love them.

If someone’s acting like a less quotable Regina George toward you, it sucks, but I’d suggest learning to love them. Cause here’s the thing; if they’re acting out by being cruel to other people, something sad and tough is going on inside of them that they’re trying to work out. That’s rough, right? Give them a little love, an “I hope you figure out what’s hurting you” in your head, and you’ll walk away with a secret upper hand. Your resentment or hate toward them will only hurt you in the long run.

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