Being bullied online can really knock your confidence and it can be hard to know how to get back to feeling normal again. We’ve put together some ideas of things you could try if you’re recovering from something hurtful that happened online.

Talk it out:

It can be hard to reach out for help and to talk about something negative that’s happened to you. Even though it isn’t easy, talking to someone is one of the best things that you can do to make yourself feel better about the situation.

Talk about what’s on your mind and how it’s making you feel. Sometimes speaking to someone else can help give you a different perspective and make you feel more in control.

Think about who you might want to talk to about what’s been going on. This could be a close friend, a family member, a teacher or someone from Netsafe or Youthline. The most important thing is that you speak to someone you feel comfortable with.

Turn your anger into something positive:

It’s normal to feel mad when someone has been nasty to you online. Being angry can be a positive thing, as it means you understand that what happened to you was unfair and not your fault. However, it’s important to remember that there is a difference between anger and aggression. Don’t let you anger lead to you doing something mean back to the person who bullied you. If your anger is making you want to hurt someone, break something or hurt yourself then it’s worth reaching out for help.

Try to channel your anger into doing positive things to make your situation better. This could include using your anger to block and report the person who is being mean to you online or finding a new place to make new friends.

Try new things:

One of the best ways to rebuild confidence is to try doing some new things. This could be anything and it doesn’t have to be something difficult or dramatic, starting off with some little things is a good first step. You might be feeling like you can’t do something, but when you try it you realise that you actually can – that’s how confidence happens.

Some ideas of thing to try could include doing something new online such as playing a new game, eating lunch in a different place, or doing something creative like writing something or drawing a picture. It doesn’t matter what you decide to do, the main thing is to start off slow and watch your confidence grow over time.

Express yourself:

A good way to make sense of how you’re feeling and get your confidence back is to do something creative. One idea for letting go of some of the hurt is to get some paper and finish the sentence “I feel … because …”. Keep writing as many different sentences as you can think of. Once you’re done screw up the bits of paper and throw them away (or if you don’t feel comfortable throwing them away quite yet you can hold onto them and throw them away later). Other ideas of creative things you can do could include drawing or writing in a diary.

Remember that difference is a strength:

Don’t let the person bullying you make you feel like you need to be anyone else except yourself. We are all different and that’s a good thing! Remember that if someone is being mean to you online, it’s because of something that’s going on with them – not you.

A world without difference would be so boring. Imagine if there was only one type of music, or sport or only one colour! Don’t forget that our differences are important and they make you who you are.

CONTACT NETSAFE

If you or someone you know needs help or advice about something that’s happened online, you can contact us seven days a week.

  • Text ‘Netsafe’ to 4282
  • Fill out an online contact form 
  • Email help@netsafe.org.nz
  • Call us free phone on 0508 NETSAFE (0508 638 723). 

Our contact centre is open 8am – 8pm Monday to Friday, and 9am – 5pm on weekends and public holidays.  

If you’re concerned about the immediate safety of you or someone else, call 111. 

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