Bullying can be a problem for people who look different. We explain what bullying is and share tips on how to stop it from happening.
If you look different, you may have heard people saying hurtful things about the way you look. Some people might talk about how you look without thinking about how it might feel for you. Others may say horrible things just to upset you.
This can be difficult – but there are things you can do when this happens. Here are some of the best ways to react when people say hurtful things to you.
When people say hurtful things to you, it is often best just to walk away. This is powerful. It tells the other person you are not going to take any notice of them. A person being unkind is not worth your time – and you’re “telling” them this by not giving them any attention.
You may still feel angry and upset. That’s normal, but it is better to take yourself away from the difficult situation and find someone you trust to talk to about how you’re feeling.
It can help to think about some responses in advance – and have some of them ready.
When people say hurtful things to you, you can show them you don’t like what they have said by:
- Looking at them with a serious face, for about a second, then looking away.
- Looking at the person and raising your eyebrows to show you have heard.
- Looking and frowning to tell them you are not happy.
You might decide you want to say something to let the person know you are not happy. Here are some things you might say to someone:
- “It isn’t nice to say things about how someone looks.”
- “If you want to know why I look different just ask me.”
- “I don’t think you would like it if someone said things about how you look.”
“People used to say horrible things about how I looked. The most common one was ‘frog eyes’. Sometimes I would just leave it and not say anything but other times I did say something back. I’d say something like, ‘I don’t know why my eyes are such a problem for you’. Most of the time people would leave me alone once I had said something. I think they were surprised I had responded. But I was always careful who I responded to because I didn’t want to make a situation worse.” Kerry