I’m on a mission. I want to speak out about bullying situations, on behalf of my best friend and other students who have been bullied. They have been in quite a bunch of bullying situations, and I feel like stopping as much as I can for good. While I’m at it, I wanted to tell Hunt about it in case of other bullying situations.
There are 4 types of people involved in bullying situations. There’s the target, which nobody wants to be, because they’re the ones who are bullied. Then there’s the ally, who sees the bullying situation and acts in a positive way to stop it. There’s also the bystander, who sees the bullying situation, but does nothing to try and stop it. You shouldn’t be a bystander at ALL, because the bullying might just get worse. Finally, there’s, of course, the bully.
My best friend is not the only one being bullied in this school. We have seen other bullying situations around here. Whether the targets are nice to us or not, we should still try to be allies to them because no matter who is being bullied, we should try to stop it. The targets feel worse if nothing happens to stop the bully, so we need to make them feel needed for this community.
If we stop bullying in this school, it would make a big difference, and I mean BIG. We would all pitch in, be allies, and generally sail through life without any problems with mean kids. We should pluck up courage and stand up to them, and maybe they would eventually stop being mean to us. We wouldn’t have to worry about that problem anymore. Instead, we could focus on other things that need to get done in our lives. We would all be nice to each other, in a way.
I know that sometimes kids don’t know how to be allies, and other times they’re afraid to be allies. Sometimes they don’t know what to say to bullies, so for those kids, the best thing to do is make a clever comeback, but DON’T make it a mean one, say something like ‘Enough already’ ‘What?” or ‘Whatever’. Allies aren’t afraid to publicly care for the target. And for the kids that are afraid they’ll become a target if they try to be an ally, if you just stand strong and confident inside yourself, you can be an ally to yourself. After you know what to do, you can be an ally to other targets. Hopefully others will see your examples and become allies with you. If being an ally won’t be cool to the popular group you’re in, just ask yourself a question: WHO’s in charge here, anyway??? Nobody has control over you; you should make your own decisions.
I feel bad for the targets in bullying situations a lot, because they don’t deserve to be bullied. After all, what did they ever do to the bully? You can call me crazy for saying this, but other times, I feel sorry for the bully. Why? Because when someone is determined to make other people feel bad about themselves, it’s usually so they can feel good about themselves. And that means they must have a hard time feeling confident in themselves. If you’re thinking about being mean back to a bully, that’s not the best thing to do. It’s likely to create a cycle that won’t end. The bullies might need a friend to support them, so they feel better. You don’t need to feel like you should be the bully’s friend; they just might need one. That’s why my best friend and I are nice when it comes to talking with other people, although we sometimes have to have a strong attitude when we’re being an ally. But we don’t say mean things about the bully to get them back; we just tell them, in a way, that there’s no point in bullying others, it’s wrong, and they should stop. That’s the best thing an ally should do, because if you do something mean back to a bully, it’s just going to get worse.
Kids who have been bullied are afraid to speak out because they’re afraid the bullying might get worse. Targets should feel empowered to talk to an adult. That’s not tattling. Tattling is different; it’s like getting even with someone. Speaking up is like protecting yourself. The targets usually need an ally, too, so they know someone cares about them. And that’s what we need to do. Just remember that bullies usually have the same problems as you, and never be a bystander, be an ally, to stop bullying, because the targets need to feel that someone cares about them enough to stand up for them. Never keep bullying a secret, either, whether it’s about you or a friend. I believe stopping bullying is a stepping stone towards World Peace. We should stop bullying and show respect for everyone our age, no matter who they are inside. I believe in all of you!

-Judi S. Ortega, who thinks positive out loud

P.S. Be sure to check out my advice column, ASK JUDI, in the HUNT newspaper, & feel free to send questions to Mrs. Rossell for me to answer in the paper!