Grundy Kendall Regional Office of Education LogoGrundy / Kendall
Regional Office of Education

Christopher D. Mehochko

Regional Superintendent
Morris Office: (815) 941-3247  |  Fax: (815) 942-5384
Yorkville Office: (630) 553-4168  |  Fax: (630) 553-4152


Who Are You?  Bully, Victim, Or Both?

    About 20% of you say that it has happened to you.

    You are more likely male if you are physically bullied or if you are a physical bully .

    You are female if you have been relationally bullied or if you isolate others .

    It makes no difference where you live: urban, suburban, town, rural.  Or if you are popular or not.

    You aremore likely to smoke, drink and get poor grades if you bully or if you are a victim.

    You aren’t good at adjusting to your environment if you are a victim or a bully. 

    You are more likely to be socially isolated if you are a victim.

    If you are in middle school, you are more likely to be bullied.  Physically being bullied occurs more in elementary grades and in middle school.  Relational bullying occurs more in high school and late middle school.

    If you have seen a bully in action, you are alive, as everyone is a bystander at some point in time.[1]


    About 50% of you have been bullied online, and about the same number are cyber bullying.

    If you cyber bully, you are probably female.  And more than 1 in 3 of you have experienced cyber threats. 

    If you are an adolescent or teen, 25% of you have been bullied repeatedly through your cell phone or the Internet . And 1 in 10 of you have had embarrassing or damaging pictures of you without permission, often using cell phone cameras .  About 1 in 5 teens of you have posted or sent sexually suggestive or nude pictures of yourselves to others, probably via cell phone.

    Sadly, well over half of you do not tell your parents when cyber bullying occurs.  And only 20% of you would think of reporting cyber bullying to the police . [i]


What Are WaysThat Kids Might Use to Bully Others?[ii]

Physical - hitting, kicking, beating up, pushing, spitting, property damage, and/or theft.Direct (face to face).

Verbal - teasing, mocking, name calling, verbal humiliation, verbal intimidation, threats, coercion, extortion, and/or racist, sexist or homophobic taunts.Direct (face to face).

Social - gossip, rumor spreading, embarrassment, alienation or exclusion from the group, and/or setting the other up to take the blame.Indirect (behind someone’s back).

Cyber or electronic- using the Internet, email or text messaging to threaten, hurt, single out, embarrass, spread rumors, and/or reveal secrets about others.Direct or indirect.

Is There A Difference Between How Boys Bully and How Girls Bully?

Boys tend to be physically aggressive.

Boys may be more accepting of bullying than girls.

Boys are more likely to both bully and be bullied than girls.[iii]

Boys are generally more aggressive than girls, as is their involvement in delinquent and criminal behavior. On self-report measures, boys report bullying almost three times (3x) more frequently than girls (23% of boys versus 8% of girls). These differences may be biased because girls are disinclined to view relational forms of aggression, such as exclusionary behaviors, as being forms of bullying. Implication- There is a need to bring the subject of girl's bullying out into the open so there is better recognition.

Boys have been observed to bully at a rate of 5.2 episodes per hour and girls bully at a rate of 2.7 episodes hourly.

Males are more likely to be bullies and victims of bullying than females. Males are more likely to be physically bullied, while females are more likely to be verbally and psychologically bullied.[iv]


          Girls tend to use indirect aggression involving hostile acts such as gossiping and manipulating others to exclude a victim. Boys have also been found to use relational forms of aggression, but they are more likely to use physical forms of aggression, yelling and assertions of status and dominance.

          Although girls bully less frequently than boys, those girls who do bully regularly, relative to other girls, are as much at risk as highly bullying boys for a variety of adjustment problems.

          Although male students are more likely to be in fights, 24% of female students report they had been in physical fights in the previous year and that 7% of these fights took place on school property[v]

          Girls tend to bully other girls indirectly through peer groups (relationally). Rather than bully a targeted child directly, girls more often share with others hurtful information about the targeted child.

          Girls experience sexual bullying more often than boys (for example, spreading rumors about sexual activity or being targeted as the recipient of sexual messages.)[vi]


Or How They Are Victimized?



Boys and girls report being victimized at relatively similar rates. Girls were equally as likely to fight with boys as with other girls.

Violent girls report significantly greater rates of victimization and abuse plus a greater likelihood of co-occurring problems with depression, low self-esteem and revictimization than their male counterparts. There is a need to tailor interventions to meet the specific needs of girls and boys.[vii]

What Can You Do If You Are Being Bullied (A Victim)?

Are there chacteristics of a victim? 

For more information, follow this link.

There are things you can do if you are being bullied.

              Look at the kid bullying you and tell him or her to stop in a calm, clear voice. You can also try to laugh it off. This works best if joking is easy for you. It could catch the kid bullying you off guard.

              If speaking up seems too hard or not safe, walk away and stay away. Don’t fight back. Find an adult to stop the bullying on the spot.

              Don’t bully back.  Two wrongs don’t make a right.  Try not to show anger or tears.

              Report bullying and cyberbulling to a parent or an adult that you trust.  Often kids don’t report because they are afraid their parents will take away their phone or computer.  It is better to report the problem so that it can be stopped.  It is important that kids remember that bullying is wrong and hurts people and needs to be handled by an adult.  So remember, report bullying of yourself or other students to your teacher, coach, principal, bus driver, and/or parent.  The more that bullying is brought to the attention of adults, the easier it is to stop.[viii]


There are things you can do to stay safe in the future, too.

           Talk to an adult you trust. Don’t keep your feelings inside. Telling someone can help you feel less alone. They can help you make a plan to stop the bullying.

           Stay away from places where bullying happens.  Avoid being alone, and avoid situations where there are no other students or teachers.  Try to go to the bathroom with a friend or eat lunch in a group.  When riding the bus, sit near the front.  If you know a student, who likes to bully, is in a place you normally walk to lunch or class, use an alternative hallway if possible.[ix]

           Stay near adults and other kids.Most bullying happens when adults aren’t around.[x]

What Can You Do If You Are a Bystander?

When you see bullying, there are safe things you can do to make it stop.

            Talk to a parent, teacher, or another adult you trust.  Adults need to know when bad things happen so they can help.  There is no such thing as an innocent bystander.  You need to help, and the easiest way to do that is to talk to a trusted adult.

            Be kind to the kid being bullied. Show them that you care by trying to include them. Sit with them at lunch or on the bus, talk to them at school, or invite them to do something. Just hanging out with them will help them know they aren’t alone.


Not saying anything could make it worse for everyone!

The kid who is bullying will think it is ok to keep treating others that way,

and the victim may think they are alone![xi]


What Can You Do If You Are A Bully?

Nobody should be mean to others.

Are there characteristics of a bully?

For more information, follow this link.

         Stop and think before you say or do something that could hurt someone.  Figure why you want to hurt them and figure out a different way to resolve your feelings.  Imagine how you would feel in the same situation.  Don’t act impulsively, but understand the consequences of your actions.  Understand how seriously you could get in trouble if you are reported.You will be hurt for hurting them.

         If you feel like being mean to someone, find something else to do. Play a game, watch TV, talk to a friend; whatever it takes to resist the urge.  You can still be popular and not hurt others.Why would you feel better for hurting them?

         Talk to an adult you trust. They can help you find ways to be nicer to others and deal with the issue that is keeping you from being nice.  There are reasons why you might be choosing not to be kind—figuring out why may help you stop.Why would you feel better by hurting someone else?

         Keep in mind that everyone is different. Not better or worse. Just different.  Figure out why you want to make fun of them.  How will you feel better by hurting someone else? 

         If you think you have bullied someone in the past, apologize--everyone will feel better.[xii]  If the person doesn’t want to be friends, don’t get angry, accept and move on.You won’t feel better for hurting someone else.


What Are the Consequences of Bullying Behavior?

Regardless of whether you are a bully or a victim there are consequences.  The immediate and long-term consequences of bullying are influenced by a) how often it occurs, b) how long it lasts,c) how often are the bully and victim together, and d) how harsh it is.

For more information on consequences go to this link.


[ii]Beran, Tanya. “Bullying: What are the Differences Between Boys and Girls and How Can You Help

[iii]Hymel, Shelley and Susan M. Swearer.“Bullying: An Age-Old Problem That Needs New Solutions.”

[vi]Hymel, Shelley and Susan M. Swearer.“Bullying: An Age-Old Problem That Needs New Solutions.”