I've been called a bully

It doesn't feel good to be called a bully. It means that someone doesn't like the way you behave towards them.

What should I do?

Sometimes you don't know why someone thinks you are a bully. But sometimes you do know why. Other people usually don't like someone who bullies, even if they pretend to like you.

If you are engaged in bullying behaviour, it is important that you think about how you can change your behaviour. You can also take steps to make sure it doesn't happen again.

Talk to someone and stop

If you have been bullying others, telling someone what you have done is a big thing. You can ask for help to change your behaviour. You can talk to your parents, teachers or your friends.

  • Apologise to the person you have hurt or made feel bad - it’s the first step to making things better.
  • Write them a letter if they don't want to talk to you.
  • Tell a parent or teacher that you have been unkind to someone and feel bad about it.
  • Remove any unkind posts, messages or pictures that you have sent.
  • Ask the guidance officer or school counsellor to help you learn how to make and keep friends.
  • Find out what bullying is.

Think about your behaviour

Think about how you were acting. What were your face and body showing? Think about why you acted this way. Were you:

  • angry with someone?
  • wanting to make someone do what you wanted?
  • trying to make your friends laugh?
  • wanting to get even with someone?
  • trying to stop others bullying you?

If you don't know, talk to a teacher or adult to help you work it out.

Think about the other person

Your behaviour has made someone else feel bad. They may feel:

  • upset or scared
  • that they have no friends and no one likes them
  • that it is their fault
  • that no one can help them
  • if they say anything it will get worse.

Be responsible

Being responsible for your behaviour is important. You can:

  • admit to what you have done
  • follow the rules about respect and behaviour
  • accept the consequences you have been given by your school or parents
  • accept that the person you have hurt and their friends may not want to hang out with you for a while
  • learn how to work and play with others.

For more information, refer to Primary: I'm not a bully.

Support services who can help

If you or someone you know need someone to talk to, for any reason, about anything, you can: