Adults' Guide

 

Adults should be involved in taking action against bullying. Studies have shown that adults’ involvement in taking action against bullying can gradually stop the behavior.

Ways adults can take part in stopping bullying:

- Mediate the fight even if it means getting another adult for assistance.

- Break up the bully and the victim.

- Check everyone's safety.

- Tend to any medical or mental emergencies.

- Remain composed, objective and comfort other parties involved.

- Show respectful behavior when stopping both parties.

What should not be done:

- Don't disregard the behavior since kids cannot resolve it alone and adult aid is needed.

- Don’t directly try to find out what happened

- Never oblige the kids to say what went on in front of each other

- Don’t embarrass the kids involved by questioning them in front of others.

- Split up the kids involved and talk to each one alone.

- Never force the children to apologize immediately after the fight.

- Seek medical care or police aid urgently if:

  • A weapon is used
  • Severe physical injury or threats of bodily harm are observed.
  • It is a matter of discrimination or homophobia.
  • Sexual abuse was involved

The Gradual Action

You can use these guidelines if you have just helped someone against bullying or if someone has asked you for help:

- Uncover the whole story

- Stop it: Break up anyone involved in the act.

- Ask About it: Find out information about the incident from multiple sources such as adults or witnesses

- Be Objective: Understand the facts without picking sides.

- Don't label the act as bullying before getting the whole story.

- Review the definition of bullying

You can ask the following questions to see if this behavior is classified as bullying or normal behavior:

- Has there been any previous incidents between the 2 individuals involved in the behavior?

- Is there perceived power imbalance? (review the definition here) If you asked the targeted individuals if they perceive a power imbalance, and their answer was yes; then there probably is.

- Was the child previously bullied and is he afraid it will reoccur?

- Are the kids in a relationship? If so there are special methods for teen dating harassment.

- Are the kids members of a gang? Then you should approach security forces

- Beyond the direct participants