Bullying among school children has become quite common practice. Bullying at schools has become so serious that it has been increasingly considered as a public health issue plaguing our entire society. There are many negative effects of bullying which may cause academic, physical, social, emotional, and psychological consequences on victims or bullies.
What is bullying?
Bullying among children is understood as repeated, negative acts committed by one or more children against another. These negative acts may be physical or verbal in nature -- for example, hitting or kicking, teasing or taunting -- or they may involve indirect actions such as manipulating friendships or purposely excluding other children from activities
Bullying is sort of aggressive behaviour against others such as, verbal by calling nasty names, physical by kicking, pushing or tripping up and social by everyone stopped talking to you. Despite some children bully others without aware to the results of their actions but bullying reflects adversely on the victims' lives and leads to be victimization to several disorders like anxiety, depression, loneliness and lose their opportunity to have an ordinary life.
Negative effects of bullying on children lives:
Bullying can also greatly affect the overall climate of a school. According to the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, 50% of children are bullied and l0% are victims of bullying on a regular basis. A number of children and adolescents have reported that they suffered side effects of bullying - a drop in grades, an increase in anxiety, a loss of social life.
Approximately 160,000 children miss school every day in the United States for fear of being bullied; more than 50 suicides have been linked to prolonged bullying; and approximately 85% of school shootings have revenge against bullies as a major motive.
Studies suggest that chronically victimized students may as adults be at increased risk for depression, poor self-esteem, and other mental health problems,6 including schizophrenia.
As a result of being bullied, victims may experience many immediate mental or physical health-related consequences.
Studies show that victims have more anxiety, sadness, sleep difficulties, low self-esteem, headaches, stomach pain, and general tension than their peers who are not being bullied. Also, this psychological stress can cause victims' bodies to be less resistant to disease and infection, and therefore they may get sick more often.
Bullying causes both short and long term damage related to:
Mental Health- shame, fear, low self-esteem, depression, and suicide
Physical Problems- obvious bruises or wounds from harassment, sleep disruptions, bed wetting, psychosomatic aches
Social Difficulty- inappropriate social skills, social isolation, inaccurate social perceptions
School Setting- difficulty concentrating, poor academic performance, absenteeism, overall school climate and breakdown of school connectedness, escalating school violence
Society- alcohol and drug abuse, gang involvement, escalating violence, crime
In the social area, victims have few friends or none at all. Due to their high anxiety level and low self-worth, it is very hard for them to make friends. This leads to feelings of isolation and believing that they are not even worthy of having friends. Also, other kids often do not want to become friends with the victims, because they are afraid that they will be bullied as well. Another reason that other kids do not hang around with victims is because they worry that peers will not like them if they associate with the victims.
Feelings of loneliness and sadness on the part of victims can also lead to consequences related to their learning and school success. Being a victim can result in poor school attendance, because many victims become afraid of going to school. They are also scared of riding the school bus or using the bathroom at school.
One study found that 8% of 8th graders in the U.S. miss at least one day of school per month for fear of bullies. Victims often receive lower grades due to attendance problems, and also due to their stress and worry. They become obsessed with the bullying and how to try to avoid it. This leaves little or no time, energy, or concern for schoolwork and learning. A vicious cycle can occur because the victim's poor school performance can lead to embarrassment and anxiety, which can in turn cause them to be picked on even more.
Some experts believe that school shootings are related to bullying. Students who committed school shootings were over two times as likely to have reported that they were victims of bullying.
In some cases, the bullying may be so severe and may go on for so long that the victim has thoughts of suicide, or he or she may actually commit suicide. Victims are also more likely to have attempted suicide than their non-bullied peers. The term "bullycide" is used to describe a victim's suicide that occurs due to extreme bullying behavior by a bully toward that victim.
Children who are bullied are at risk for developing a number of emotional difficulties, including depression and anxiety symptoms. Children who are particularly traumatized may go on to develop a specific type of anxiety disorder called, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD).
When children are suffering from PTSD, they are prone to developing strong physical symptoms in situations where they feel unsafe and in danger. They appear disconnected from others, and they may experience an intense physical response from their nervous system that can involve angry outbursts, jumpyness, and hyper alertness. This reaction is the nervous system's response to potential danger, whether real or imagined, creating constriction and disassociation in order to protect the body.
* Consequence of bullying
* The Emotional Toll of Bullying in Schools
* 'Stop bullying now'