Are You Being Bullied?

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Did you know an estimated 30% of students in the U.S. have experienced bullying? That means 30% of you have likely been afraid to go to school or ride the bus — and for some this growing problem has led them to extremes, like asking their families to move to a new school district, or, in the worst cases, suicide.

Experts say that it’s just as important to reduce bullying as it is to reduce weapons in schools, which has happened over the past few years because of surveillance cameras and metal detectors. Bullying, however, can lead to worse, more violent behavior, says William Modzeleski, of the Federal Safe and Drug-Free Schools Program.

And for kids who have something different about them, the abuse can be even worse. At least five teens in past month have taken their own lives after being a victim of gay bashing. According to a recent survey on gay bullying, 9 out of 10 students who identify themselves as gay, lesbian or bisexual are bullied in school and they are four times more likely than heterosexual kids to attempt suicide.

Could you or a friend be a victim of bullying? Find out the telltale signs by reading about other student’s experiences.

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"I get bullied a lot at school. I think people bully me because I tell them how I feel and they don't like my opinions. Sometimes I just feel like crying. I'll get picked on and I can't control my anger -- then I yell at them and get in trouble."

--Megan T.

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"I'm not the kind of person who would ever hit anyone, and most of the kids at school take advantage of that. They think I won't hit back because I'm afraid of them, but it's not that. Its because I know they're the ones acting like children and I'm the mature one."

--Daniel B.

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"I'm in the ninth grade and am only 5 feet tall. I'm not the only person who is this short at my school -- in fact, I'm taller than some juniors and seniors. I guess that everyone just thinks it's easier to pick on me because I can't physically fight back. Even my friends pick on me. I say that I am used to it, but it still hurts as much as it did when it first started six years ago. Isn't there a way to make it stop? I mean, we all have flaws, right?"

--Aubrey

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"I don't like it when bigger kids pick on smaller kids -- it's not fair, but I guess life is just not fair. I don't see why the world has to be so bossy. Why can't everyone be nice to the people they have to be around all day? The world would be a much better place if we all did that. After all, we're all human beings."

--Jessica B.

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"I have been bullied a lot of times. I'm fatter than the other kids and they use it as an advantage to pick on or bully me. There are certain kids that just have so much fun doing it. My brother and parents tell me to stand up for myself, but I am too soft hearted to hurt another student."

--Josh S.

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"I used to be bullied a lot in the second grade. People called me names and made me get things for them. I did it because I thought they were my friends, but I found out later on that they were just using me."

--Porshia H.

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"I am very small so I get teased a lot. For the most part, I have learned to live with the fact that people are insecure about themselves and they end up taking it out on others. I just have to love myself for me."

--Megan H.

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"In eighth grade, I was a quiet, shy girl. I was the one who would sit at the front of the class, and would doodle or read. One day someone started a rumor that I wanted to kill my Algebra class. People started coming up to me and saying things like, 'I'm your friend, OK? Don't shoot me.' The rumor spread (as all rumors do) to 'Nicole wants to kill the eighth grade!' and then to 'Nicole wants to kill everyone in the school.' Eventually people were saying that I was a terrorist who wanted to blow up the building. Everyday I came home in tears. I never went to the principal, though, despite all of this verbal abuse. I figured it would die down. My Mom thankfully did talk to the principal. He found the three people who started the whole thing and punished them."

--Nicole

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"I've been bullied a lot by everyone at school just because I act and do things differently. Everybody thinks I'm ugly and uncool. I want to change who I am. I want to be like everybody else."

--Samantha

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"I was bullied by my sisters and the kids at school because of my weight and the way I look. It got to the point where I didn't want to go to school. Eventually I learned to let it go in one ear and out the other because if they saw it getting to me they would have gotten what they wanted. When they realized it wasn't bothering me anymore they moved on to bullying another person."

--Brandi B.

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"There are certain people in my life who just want to beat the stuffing out of me for no reason. Picking on someone who has done nothing to you doesn't make any sense. I have tried to improve many things that people don't like about me, but nothing seems to work."

--Stephan W.

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"I've been bullied by people lots of times, mainly because I'm a little larger then others. Every day they come up and hit me on my back or scream my name loudly and obnoxiously across the hall. Sometimes they call me gay. I know that I have to stay strong to fulfill my dreams -- I have to ignore the people who do thisÉ but at some point in time, you do have to wonder, is it worth it being the better person?"

--L.M.

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"It is not fun to be bullied. People at my school do it when they think someone isn't cool. They'll say things that aren't true about the person. It really hurts me when people make fun of other people just because their clothes, shoes or hairstyles aren't up to date. Don't make fun of someone until you really get to know them, or as my teacher says, 'until you've walked a mile in their shoes.'"

--Larissa M.

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"Everyday I worry about what they will do to me next. I'm sometimes terrified to go to school. It's not just one specific person, but a group of people. They always ask me if I'm gay. They go on and on about it. They spread rumors about me and mess with me during class, and I can't do anything because if I say something they'll just do it more. Sometimes I know to just ignore them, but it's hard to do when it happens every day at school. I realize that they're just screwed up themselves and they have their own problems, and that they try to take them out on me. Then, at other times, I think maybe it is just me."

--Matt

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"Back when I was in the third grade, I was picked on all the time. I had no friends except for one girl. People would call me names as I walked by, make farting noises and saying it was me. After school was OK -- I had my own way of getting home so no one would see me. I would walk through the woods next to the school with my bike. But one day someone followed me and a bunch of other kids hid behind a mud hill. One kid called my name and when I turned around I was hit in the face by a ball of mud. They kept throwing and I started to cry. Here I am eight years later, still cringing when I walk by a mud hill."

--Jennifer E.

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"I've been bullied by lots of people because I have big cheeks. They call me things like 'dog' or 'puppy'. I used to laugh along, but then the comments started to get really mean-spirited -- someone once said, 'Maybe I should bring in my dog whistle, then we won't have to shout her name -- we can just blow the whistle and she'll come right to us.' Everybody has something different about them, and mine just happens to be shown in my cheeks."

--Rachel

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"I've been bullied a lot by people at my school, but no matter what they say I don't listen. It's like that saying, sticks and stones can break my bones but words can never hurt me."

--Adrian C.

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"This girl at summer camp always made fun of me, but I never knew how to react. She's really popular, and I just wanted to be liked. One day she said something really mean, and I just snapped. I pushed her into the creek, and she was soaked for the rest of the day."

--Alli

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"I have been picked on many times about being flat-chested. Kids at school talk about me behind my back -- even the people who I thought were my friends. It hurt at first, but I'm glad that I now know who I can really count on. God gave me what I have, and I would rather be me than a fake. A word of advice that one of my teachers gave me this year: 'The popular people may shine now but one day they could be working at Wendy's!' One day you will be in the spotlight to shine."

--Kelly W.

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"I've heard of people picking on kids because they are black, but there is one girl that picks on me because I am white. She never stops saying things like, 'I hate you, you stupid white girl. I hate sitting next to you!' And those are the nicer things she says. I think someone should stop her before she seriously messes with the wrong person. Even though she is mean to me, I don't want to see her get hurt."

--Laurie S.

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"I got bullied by a boy named Chris, but I out smarted him with my mind instead of my fist. Brains beat fighting any day."

--Preston S.

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"I have been teased before about my teeth. I solved the problem by getting braces."

--Sarah

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"I'm 13 years old and not very cute, or so people say. The kids in my eighth grade classes think that if you're not 5' 4" and 100 pounds then you don't deserve to be happy. For the past three years I have been called names such as fag, gay, lesbian, worthless piece of trash -- all just because I'm overweight. What people don't understand is that the saying 'sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me' is the biggest lie. Words can hurt badly. They bring down your self-esteem, and your love for yourself and for others. From now on I'm going to stand up for myself and others who have been called names. We can't let people keep getting hurt because of such foolish and useless acts."

--Stephanie M.

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This high school senior used his experiences being bullied in a movie to help others.

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A documentary about bullying is dealing with an MPAA rating that could keep teens from ...

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We hear from former bullies about why they did it.

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Scientists have discovered that when mice are bullied, their brain chemistry shifts.

34 comments on “Are You Being Bullied?

    1. Zachary Robinson

      I think bulling should stop because to many people are getting hurt and are killing there selves because people can’t just watch videos and learn how bad it hurts when they make fun of them or hit them so that’s why bulling should stop.

      Reply
    2. Darrian Losstarot

      The programs don’t help. They only make the teachers and higher ups feel like they are doing something to help. i know there doing their best but it has not helped me.
      I was under attack all through the 6th grade. As such, I was the back sheep picked on alien. I was picked on by the whole class; nothing good happened. If they weren’t picking on me, they would have fun while I was lonely. and as an 11 year old that was painful.
      Now I can’t make friends easily. I only have two friends. and they are far away. If I got into a fight, I got punished too. You don’t feel like you can talk to the office workers because you both got in trouble. and that didn’t help when the teacher also thought I was just playing victim.
      You have to catch them and find those they hurt. help the outcasts!

      Reply
    3. Kris

      BULLYING IS A DISEASE AND NEEDS A CURE. I’VE BEDN BULLIED FOR 4 YEARS, I WATCH THE NEWS AS THIS TAKE LIVES. I STAND AGAINST BULLYING. I GET FRIENDS TO HELP ME STAND AGAINST IT. WE ALL MUST STAND TOGETHER. WE MUST STOP THIS AND NOT TURN A BLIND EYE. WE MUST TACKLE THIS ISSUE. WE ARE THE FRONT LINE. FROM SCHOOL TO ONLINE. WE ARE THE CURE. WE ARE THE ANTI VIRUS AGAINST BULLYING. WE MUST CURE IT FOR ONCE AND FOR ALL

      Reply
  1. allyssa self

    i think bullying should stop throughout the usa and people that do get bullyed and commit suicide the people who bullyed the person who killed there self should die to.

    Reply
  2. jade mclaughlin

    I think the bullying has gone way out of hand and they think there so tough but there not, the tough one is you and the people who stand up to bullying and the people who care about you your stronger than what you seem.stop the bullying.

    Reply
  3. Heidi Doerr

    I was bullied once when I was leaving at my Intermediate school by several boys. They were calling me names, and they said, “Go get on your bus!” I was really upset about it, and on the next day, I stood up and told them to stop bullying me.

    Reply
  4. Christopher Davis

    I think that bulling is not GOOD to do. People will kill their self if people keep bulling them like that girl did when she jump of a roof.

    Reply
  5. Mercedes Mason

    People really needs to STOP bulling its wrong and theres a lot of kids killing them selfs over it SO STOP BULLING.

    Reply
  6. Brandon Wierman

    I believe that anti bullying videos can both help or hurt a victim. Yes, you should stand up for yourself, but what if you can’t? For example, I was walking through the hallways within the past week and saw a friend from my bus getting pushed around. The bully had sprayed him with water, then proceeded to knock his books, binders, etc. out of his hands. My friend then retaliated and pushed the bully against the lockers, then starting picking up his books. I walked over to my friend and helped him out. I then stood up, confronted the bully, looked him dead in the eyes and said, “Don’t mess with him.” I repeated it 3 or 4 more times before he started to walk off. It makes me sick that kids just tear one another down to the point of them doing something horrible. You don’t know what that kid’s life is like at home, work, or at school. What if he had depression or anxiety and he when he got home he were to do something horrible? You’d feel terrible if you heard the person you bullied or were just “messing around with,” had committed suicide because of your actions, wouldn’t you? Watch what you say and do to other people, you never know when they’re going to snap.

    Reply
  7. Samantha

    Bullying is something every person goes through, and forcing people to watch a video could possibly make them want to bully even more.

    Reply
  8. Cynthia goodrich

    Bullying happens all the time. In every school, rather it’s seen or not it’s there. And it’s not just in schools it happens every where. I think that the videos just give people new ways to bully others. There should be a way to teach about bullying with out giving them new way to bully others. I also think that students should not be the only ones learning about anti-bullying, adults should to. Like I said it doesn’t always happen in schools, student are not the only ones that bully others, adult do it to.

    Reply
  9. Anna

    I think that bully need to stop and because a lot of people are killing their self because other people are bullying them and i think it should stop for real please everybody out their put your hand in your heart and you will know how much it hurts

    Reply
  10. shyheem rice

    I think bullying should stop because in reality bullying is causing more people to commit suicide than any regular or critical death

    Reply
  11. Nikki spoons

    And plus there are difference between bullying and playing around. When you’re shoved against a locker that’s bullying. You get a teacher on that one, but when you are just playing around with your friends that just playing around and having a nice laugh!

    Reply
  12. Stranger

    On the last one how they said that the one saying is a lie its only a lie if you let the words get to you LET NOTHING ENSLAVE YOU

    Reply
  13. Heather R.

    I have been bullied for as long as I can remember it hurts I was depressed people told me I was over weight and ugly. It felt like I couldn’t tell anyone it felt like I was trapped

    Reply
  14. Kandace

    i think bulling is so wrong i would knowi was bullied alot its not cool… treat people the way you wanna be treated:]

    Reply
  15. Kandace

    i think bulling is so wrong i would know i was bullied alot its not cool… treat people the way you wanna be treated, you can’t be rude to someone and expect to have someone to treat you better than you’ve been acting

    Reply
  16. MaShyia-Fields

    People who bully others should take a minute and think before they do something to other. While they are thinking, they should be thinking ”Do I want someone to do this to me”

    Reply
  17. Jenifer-Conaway

    If you are getting bullied ask them to stop the first time nicely. Then if that does not work ask them to stop the second time but this time you have to say it like you are mad. If that does not work ask them to stop the third time but you have to say it like you are angry. If that does not work tell a teacher you are being bullied.

    Reply
  18. sierra

    i have been bullied all my life some times i would action like i am sick to get out of school. i dont know how to put up with the bullies anymore. i feel like i have to do the right thing to keep myself slafe. but i dont fell slafe at all. i am in the 11 grade and i still get bullied all the time every day. i just feel like my store needs to be hear by other.i just feel like i am not want at all. i just need help to get better and to deal with my feeling. i saw this and had to tell you guys and girl. thank u for listening to me.

    Reply
  19. Jordan-Lee

    My brother’s being bullied, but he doesn’t think he can do anything about it because the kids get out before he has a chance to speak up. His teachers haven’t noticed anything because they happen to be too busy. I don’t know if I should help him, though…

    Reply

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