​​What is bullying?

Bullying is when someone:

  • keeps picking on you again and again and tries to make you feel bad
  • says or does lots of mean things that upset you
  • makes fun of you a lot
  • tries to stop you from joining in or make others not like you
  • keeps hurting you such as hitting or punching you.

Bullying feels awful. You feel like you can't stop it.

Bullying can happen in person or online (sometimes called cyberbullying). It might be something other people can see or it might be hidden.

Sometimes you might have a fight or argument with someone. If it happens once, it is not bullying even though it can be upsetting. It is also not bullying if you sometimes fight with a friend and you can sort it out.

Bullying is not okay. You have the right to feel safe.

If you don't feel safe, get help right now from your mum, dad, teacher, or another adult who will listen to you!

Why does bullying happen?

It's never okay to be mean. It's never okay to hurt others.

When people bully, it might be because:

  • they think it's cool
  • they get angry about something and then they take it out on someone else
  • they are uncomfortable with people who are different from them
  • they don't know how to get along with others
  • they think it's funny to hurt people
  • they are copying other people
  • they think other people will laugh too.

Whatever the reason, there's no excuse for bullying.

Where can bullying happen?

Bullying can happen almost anywhere including:

  • at school
  • on the way to school
  • in the playground
  • on trips or camps
  • on the phone or the internet
  • at the shops.

What if I have a school project on bullying?

If you have a school project on bullying, take a look at the Student school project outlines – Years 5-7 (PDF​ 95KB)​, (DOCX 100KB) for useful information and advice on where to start.