How to Deal with Bullies

By Jeremy Patton

At the beginning of every school year, I get numerous calls about bullying. I go over the following anti-bully strategy regularly with my students:

Photo by Mitchell Haindfield – flickr / Creative Commons

1. Try to talk it out. Ask the bully why he’s angry. Perhaps there’s a misunderstanding.

2. If you can’t resolve the issue, walk away and stop talking to him. Remember that he’s not your friend.

3. If the harassment continues, tell him to leave you alone. This is an important step because most bullies pick on kids who don’t stand up for themselves. Look him in the eyes and be confident.

4. If the harassment continues, tell your parents and teachers. At school, it’s the teachers’ responsibility to maintain a safe learning environment.

If other kids call you a tattletale, tell them that they aren’t the person getting picked on, so they should mind their own business. No one has a right to make your life miserable.

5. If the bully tries to hurt you, do whatever is necessary to stop him. That’s why we practice martial arts. Don’t worry about getting into trouble. Defend yourself.

Use martial arts only if a bully tries to hurt you. Do not use it because he’s running his mouth, calling you names, etc.

If he calls you a coward for not fighting, tell him that you’re not afraid  — you don’t want to get into trouble or get suspended from school. This is a good way to save face in front of your classmates.


If you are interested in our anti-bully program, present the following flyer when you visit United Martial Arts:

Added 9/14/17 – Updated 9/15/17