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Bullying is the intentional mistreatment of another individual. It must be purposely hurtful, either physical or psychological. The mistreatment usually occurs more than one time, and there is an imbalance of power between the victim and the bully. Finally, a sense of fear is instilled into the victim. These facts regarding the basic definition of what bullying is have been reported by this source.
According to the website, Dosomething.org , 3.2 million students are the victims of bullying each year. About 160,000 teenagers will skip school each day because of bullying. Unfortunately 1 out of every 10 students will eventually drop out of school because of continued bullying. Bullying has even been linked to the majority of school shootings. With facts as devastating as these, eliminating bullying should be a goal every school system is constantly working toward.
Sometimes bullying in school involves physical bullying.This type of bullying often involves physical actions such as punching, hitting, tripping, or pushing. Physical bullying peaks during the middle school years. Since children are so physically active at young ages teachers need to be able to discern between rough-house types of playing and actual bullying. Children whose appearance is different or perceived as inferior to others are more often targets of bullies. Those who are obese, disabled, or even suffer from food allergies tend to be victims. The National Association of School Psychologists have reported that signs of being a victim of bullying may include a child who fears going to school, a child who says no one likes him or her, and a child that demonstrates low self-esteem or no self-confidence.
According to NASP Resources , 25 percent of teachers see nothing wrong with some types of bullying. While this may seem hard to believe, the fact is many older teachers grew up in a time when the culture reacted quite differently to bullying. Many had the mindset that “boys will boys” or “it’s best to let kids work these things out among themselves.” Teachers must be educated and trained regarding victims of bullying facts and learn to implement strategies to intervene and help children in these situations.
A cyber bully uses technology such as the Internet, emails, and texting to intimidate and bully another individual. While girls are more often victims of cyber bullying, they fortunately are more likely to tell their parents about it.
Delete Cyberbullying recommends that victims take several steps to dealing with this type of bullying. The first step is to ignore the bullying if possible. Bullies are looking for a reaction. If one isn’t given in the early stages, sometimes this is enough to discourage further attacks.
If ignoring the bully doesn’t work, start recording everything. As painful as it may be, kids should be encouraged to keep record of emails, text messages, and other online forms of bullying. If there’s proof of bullying, parents, schools, and even Twitter or Facebook will be more likely to intervene. Children should cut off all online interaction with the bully. There are also several things victims of cyberbullying should not do. These include not sinking to the bully’s level by retaliating online or by believing and buying into what the bully is saying.
Unfortunately, victims of bullies sometimes grow up to let their own children become bullies. Perhaps they feel that if their own children take positions of power they won’t have to endure the pain that they themselves did growing up. This, however, only creates a vicious cycle of more bullying and victims.
Parents should teach their children to be assertive and stand up for themselves, but not to lower themselves to the tactics used by the bully. Simply being confident and being able to look people in the eye and speak clearly will go a long way to warding off bullies. Bullies often target individuals who seem weak and insecure. Children should be taught as early as preschool how to properly solve problems, the value of sharing, and always be encouraged to talk to a trusted adult anytime there are problems between students.