When most people think of the consequences of bullying, they think of the punishments bullies should receive as a result of their behavior. While this is a necessity in an attempt to curb the behavior, there are many consequences that are suffered by the victims as well. Understanding these consequences can assist parents in reaching out to their children, helping them live a more normal life after they have gone through the difficult process of bullying.
The Consequences of Bullying: Psychosomatic Symptoms
Children who are bullied are twice as likely to suffer from psychosomatic symptoms as children who are not routinely bullied. These problems can range from minor to severe, often depending on the amount of bullying children undergo. Some of these symptoms include:
- Sudden bed-wetting
- Stomach aches
- Sleep issues
- Skin problems
- Abdominal pain
These symptoms are psychological in nature and often require therapy to overcome. They can also be embarrassing for children, making them less likely to tell adults what is going on. This is why it is important for parents to keep a close eye on what is happening in their children’s lives.
The Consequences of Bullying: Nervous Habits
Bullying can have an extreme impact on the self-esteem of an individual. When individuals suffer from low self-esteem, they are more likely to develop nervous habits, particularly those that can have negative effects on their overall health. For instance, children who are bullied are more likely to begin smoking or to develop a drinking problem. Both of these issues can have dire consequences to a person’s health and can lead to other social problems.
The Consequences of Bullying: Psychological Disorders
While some psychological disorders are controlled genetically, others can be the result of the environment in which children grow up. When this environment involves bullying at various stages and to varying degrees, the chances of developing psychological disorders in adulthood increases, especially when the child does not get the emotional support and guidance he or she needs at a young age. If parents notice their child is being bullied, there is no shame in taking him or her to a therapist to talk out the issues and reduce the chances of developing a psychological disorder in the future.
The Consequences of Bullying: Suicide
As indicated by many stories on bullying that have hit the news in recent years, one of the most serious consequences of bullying to date is the increase in suicides among young people. In some cases, children are bullied relentlessly with no breaks, particularly when the bullying extends beyond school or the local neighborhood and occurs online as well. Children who do not have the emotional support and adult assistance they require to cope with the bullying can easily become suicidal as a result of the behavior. This is why it is so important for parents to stay involved in their children’s lives and to keep an eye out for any changes in behavior. If a parent can identify the right red flags and get their child the help he or she needs right away, the chances of suicide will be greatly decreased.
The Consequences of Bullying: Employment Issues
Bullying can have serious consequences that affect a person’s ability to do well at a job. This may seem like an unusual consequence, but once you realize why this happens, it makes a lot of sense. Most jobs require you to work as a team alongside your co-workers. This requires a certain level of self-esteem, as well as being comfortable with other people. When individuals were the victims of childhood bullying, their ability to form and maintain these relationships can be severely damaged. This can lead to issues with employment as adults.
The Consequences of Bullying: Poor Social Relationships
In addition to having difficulty with work relationships, children who were bullied are more likely to have fewer friends and no close friends. This is a direct result of bullying because this behavior can make it difficult for individuals to trust others and can cause them to become paranoid about ulterior motives. While it isn’t necessary to have an extremely busy social life as an adult, it can impact quality of life. Some people simply prefer to be alone, but it can be beneficial in so many ways to have a group of friends you can turn to for any reason. Bullying can destroy that possibility.
There are often clear consequences of bullying for the person who is responsible for the behavior. However, there are often serious consequences for those who are bullied as well, especially in the long term. When children who are bullied do not receive the emotional support and help they need soon after the incident, these consequences can last a lifetime. This is the reason why it is so important for parents, teachers and others in positions of authority to take the right steps to identify bullying victims and get them the help they require to live a more productive, healthy life.