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Young people talking

What is baiting? 

The dictionary describes to 'bait' someone as: 

to intentionally make a person angry by saying or doing things to annoy them

For example:

  • Ignore him - he's just baiting you.

  • I suspect he was just baiting me.

Others describe baiting as: 

A provocative act used to solicit an angry, aggressive or emotional response from another individual

Baiting and bullying 

Baiting can be used in bullying both on and offline. It can be used to bully someone to get 'a rise' out of them and it can be used to antagonise those who might be bullying others to get them to bully. Sometimes baiting is used secretively to try and get a person to explode in a rage or react negatively/loudly so that they get in to trouble. 

If someone is baiting you, here are some examples of what you should and should not do developed from an article by Out of the Fog

What NOT to do:
  • Don't take the bait!

  • Don't argue with a person or appeal to their sense of reason or logic while they are baiting you. They want you to rise to it! 

  • Don't retaliate and fall into a trap.
What TO do:
  • Learn to recognise baiting for what it is. If you know what they are trying to do it is easier to relationalise it. 

  • Remember that the bait you can see often has nothing to do with what the other person really wants.

  • Remember that what the person is feeling is temporary and they will probably feel different in a few days or a few hours.
  • Talk to an adult you trust such as a teacher or parent and explain what they are doing and why you think they are doing it. 
  • If falsely accused, politely, briefly and calmly state the truth one time only.
  • Try to remove yourself from the situation calmly. End the conversation and exit the space/room.
  • Get support - describe what has happened to someone who understands your situation and can help you come up with a reasoned, effective plan of how to deal with it.

Remember, bullying is NOT your fault. Find more sources of support and advice here. 

03 Aug 2017