For Teens: Responding to Bullying

This is your place.

Welcome to Our Spot! We’ll try to answer your questions about psoriasis and psoriatic arthritis (together called psoriatic disease) and how they may impact your life.

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There are three types of bullying:

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teasing, name-calling, threats, taunting

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spreading rumors, embarrassing you in public, leaving you out on purpose

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stealing or breaking your personal items, hitting/kicking/pinching, spitting, pushing/tripping

If you find yourself facing a bully, here are a few steps you can take:

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Remember you are not alone.

Other people with psoriatic disease – more than 8 million adults and children in the U.S. – have been bullied. Some of the children and teens who have been bullied have shared their stories here on Our Spot.

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Find your allies.

Surround yourself with people who want to be your friends. They’ll remind you how awesome you are.

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Share some words of wisdom.

Calmly and respectfully tell the bully that you have psoriasis and that it’s not contagious. If the mistreatment continues, tell a trusted adult what’s happening. If that adult isn’t able to help, find someone who can.

Seeing a counselor or therapist can be a great way to work through your feelings and emotions in a safe space. But if you’re having thoughts of harming yourself, contact the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline.

Peer Pressure

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Positive peer pressure

Positive peer pressure comes from friends and loved ones. It encourages you to be your best self.

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Negative peer pressure

Negative peer pressure causes stress and can force you to make decisions you’re not comfortable with. When you find yourselves in these situations, trust your instincts. If something doesn’t feel right, walk away. Learn to say no. True friends will respect your decision. This kind of decision-making is part of becoming self-reliant and learning who you are.

You could also talk to your parents or another trusted adult about a key phrase or plan to use when you are in a situation that doesn’t feel right. This could be as simple as a one-letter text or a phrase to use on the phone.

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