The Northern Ireland Anti-Bullying Forum (NIABF) defines bullying as the repeated use of power by one or more persons intentionally to hurt, harm or adversely affect the rights and needs of another or others.
Bullying can include:
Bullying due to Race, Faith and Culture is behaviour or language that makes a child or young person feel unwelcome or marginalised because of their religion, race, ethnicity, national origin, colour or nationality. NIABF includes sectarian bullying within this definition.
Cyber Bullying is bullying through the use of modern technology such as computers and mobile phones.
Some examples can include:
Receiving nasty or threatening phone calls, text messages or emails
Nasty or threatening comments, photos or videos posted on chat rooms, instant messenger or social networking sites
Disablist Bullying is behaviour or language that makes a child or young person feel unwelcome or marginalised because of a perceived or actual disability.
Homophobic Bullying is behaviour or language that makes a child or young person feel unwelcome or marginalised because of a perceived or their actual sexual orientation.
Spot the signs
It is important to be able to spot the signs of a child or young person who is being bullied but this is not necessarily easy to do. The most helpful solution is to talk with the child or young person to see if they are ok and if they need help. Some signs to look out for include:
- Not wanting to go to school (making excuses of illness, truanting or not wanting
to walk to school)
- Becoming withdrawn (being aggressive, moody, quiet, sad, tearful)
- Becoming physically and mentally unwell (stopping eating, disturbed sleep, bed wetting, headaches, depressed, self-harm, suicidal)
Additional things to look out for are:
- Isolation from their peers
- Bruises/scratches/marks on their body
- Property being damaged
- Losing money frequently
- A change in their standard of school work