Bullying is a growing problem in schools these days, but thankfully, more people are becoming aware of the problem and taking steps to end it. Studies show that bullying can have devastating effects on those who have to endure the teasing.
Bullies have been around for decades, but the bullies of today have more ways than ever to hurt their victims. Bullies now use things like cell phones to send threats or post mean messages on social media sites about people they don’t like. Cyber bullying, as it is called, is hard to escape because teens are so connected to their media, and many victims have suffered alone, reading the messages in silence. It is also an easy way for bullies to ruin someone’s reputation, since information through these kinds of media is instantaneous.
Effects of Bullying
Kids who are bullied often keep their feelings hidden, and refuse to let parents or authorities know about the problem. Sometimes these teens suffer in silence for years, and then one day when they’ve had enough, they decide to do something drastic. Teens have dropped out of school because of bullying, some have committed suicide because of teasing, and some have committed drastic acts of violence because they were bullied for so long.
According to recent studies, mental health conditions are three times higher among students that are the victims of bullying. Students that are bullied suffer from higher rates of depression, suicidal thoughts, and attempts at suicide. Students that are the victims of bullying commonly have trouble keeping up with homework and may show distress in their social lives and in their behavior.
Putting an End to Bullying
Some people are of the mindset that bullying is just a natural part of growing up, and many are hesitant to step in and intervene when kids are bullying or being bullied. However, experts agree that bullying is too detrimental to a teen’s mental health to allow it to continue. Parents are urged to watch for bullying among their kids, and to take steps to stop it when it does occur. Parents can also help their child by limiting the time they spend on social media sites and on cell phones, in order to encourage more healthy interactions with friends.