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Take the bull(y) by the horn

Never be cowed down by bullying. Stand up to it. Take all the help available to overcome unpleasant memories and never take recourse to it report Samir Parikh

education Updated: Jul 07, 2010 10:10 IST
Samir Parikh

Bullying is a reality that each one of you will face at some point in time - be it in school, college, at the work place, at the hands of siblings or peers. Bullying will come unbidden to you and take you by surprise so being prepared and knowing what to do when it does face you is a good preventive strategy that would come in handy in the future.

Safe first
The first and foremost thing you need to keep in mind is not to compromise on your own self. Remember your 'self', its integrity, dignity and worth all depend upon how you handle difficult circumstances. Bullying is a difficult situation for all of you who face it, so keep in mind that your safety is the most important thing that you need to be aware of.

Talk to parents
Remember parents are not just disciplinarians. They are also a significant source of support for you in your difficult times. So when such an incident does take place don't be afraid to speak up. Look towards your parents for they would stand by you as pillars of strength and support.

Always inform authorities
Yes you may think this is a form of weakness. Someone who seeks help from authorities, you may think, is weak and cannot stand up for him or herself. But you are seriously mistaken. Informing the authorities is a sign of strength to be able to stand up for what is right and enforce the rules and laws as they exist. So don't be afraid to look towards authorities for help. It is a sensible step not a fallacy!

Remember this is just one part of life
Your life has many different facets to it and this experience is just one aspect of it. Do not let one incident rule your life and override all the other things that are important and give you a sense of happiness and satisfaction.

Talk to a counselor
Any unpleasant incident can leave its mark and talking to a counselor is a good idea to help resolve the ambiguity and the difficulties that surround your experience of having been bullied. Do not hesitate to take help. Talk and you would surely be able to integrate, accommodate and move beyond this experience sooner.

Schools play an important role
Schools are important learning grounds. Both the bully and the one bullied are in need of help. It is important to incorporate life skills programs that teach healthy ways of living and being.

It's not a legacy!
Remember this is not a legacy that needs to be passed on. If you have been bullied that does not make it incumbent upon you to bully another person. Instead stand up and learn to say "No".

The author is a psychiatrist, and chief, Department of Mental Health and Behavioral Sciences, Max Healthcare