I have a classmate who is a big bully. Although she doesn’t trouble me too much or too often, she does pick on some of my friends a lot. She can be very mean and nasty with the things she says. Sometimes she is a completely different person and will help a little, if you ask her. My teachers have given her a warning to change her ways but she still continues to be mean and put my friends down. My friends hate her now and seem to be losing their self confidence because of some of the things she says. They don’t answer in class anymore and refrain from participating in activities because they are scared of what she will say next. I don’t like this and want it to stop. How can I help my friends?
Thank you for writing in and sharing this very troubling situation with me. I am so sorry that you and your friends have to go through this at school. Meanness is a sign of weakness. It is better to be a little nobody than to be an evil somebody. People who repeatedly attack your confidence and mock your abilities are often very insecure or feel inferior about themselves. Usually, bullying stems from some hurt feelings, pain or being bullied themselves.
Bullies often forget that by blowing out someone else’s candle it doesn’t make theirs shine any brighter. We need to remind ourselves that we rise by lifting others.
If someone throws stones at you, pick them up and build something, even if it means using those stones to build a wall against them.
Show her some respect and treat her with kindness, even though you may feel she doesn’t deserve it; it becomes a reflection of your character. Easier said than done, no doubt, but hate is heavy, let it go.
When someone tries to put you down, it only means that you are above them. Hold on to that power and do not let anyone take it away. Don’t let anyone define your actions or who you are – that’s for you to decide. Be yourself, unique and beautiful, the way you were created. Don’t allow negative comments to dull your sparkle. Shine on!
I like a boy from my class and he likes me too. Recently, I found out that he told two other girls that he liked them around the same time that he told me. I was in shock when I got to know this and I am feeling very hurt, angry and betrayed. I never thought that I would be in such a situation. I haven’t spoken to him about it and I don’t know if I should carry on this relationship. I just feel like I can’t trust him after this. Any advice?
Thank you for your email and for sharing your predicament with me. I bet it felt horrible when you found out about the other girls. You seem to really like this boy so I guess he has some qualities worth appreciating. As terrible as the news sounds, giving the boy the benefit of the doubt and not jumping to conclusions immediately, might be a good idea. You could try having a conversation with him about it to set the timeline of the events correctly. However, eventually, what matters the most is what you share now and if that is worth fighting for. ‘There is no forgiveness without love and there is no love without forgiveness’ – Bryant H McGill.
Remember that both of you are very young and are still exploring several new feelings. What you feel today might not be permanent. Teenage ideas about relationships are likely to be naive and limited. Teen boys and girls function on varying intellectual and emotional wavelengths. Love takes time to grow, infatuation happens almost instantly and they both differ. For now, enjoy spending time with each other if it makes you happy. Maintain outside interests and friendships, without hindering the personal freedom of your partner.
Communicate to him how you felt. Through the conversation, things will become clear to you and you will know if you can trust him again or not. All the best.
In a world where you can be anything- be the person who is nice, generous and happy for others.
Do keep writing in with your queries at email@example.com
Until next time, always believe in yourself!
(The columnist is psychologist and counsellor, currently working as a school counsellor.)