Bullying is something many of us experience at least once in our lives.
It doesn’t necessarily have to be the ‘typical’ stigma attached to bullying, where you have your lunch money taken. There are more subtle forms of bullying such as cyber bullying or sniggers in the background when you walk past, for the way you dress, your skin colour, for being too ‘fat’, for being too ‘skinny’, or simply just for not ‘following the crowd’.
According to a ‘Bullying and Truancy’ report (2006) two in five people admit to being bullied during their childhood and truanting as a result.
However, the majority feel it isn’t simply a case of telling a teacher or family member, especially with more subtle bullying like name calling or dirty glares across the room. This type of bullying can be seen as hard to prove leaving the victim feeling like it’s not worth mentioning for fear that it will only make matters worse.
In recent years cyber bullying has rapidly increased and become a major problem for victims as they not only feel isolated at school, but now in their own home, too.
Cyber bullying may be in the form of receiving texts, anonymous prank calls or abuse on social networking sites in which victims are made to feel depressed, frightened and alone.
Nobody deserves to feel that way, especially at such a crucial time when students need to feel happy where they are so that they can focus and achieve their goals. This is why it can’t be stressed enough that victims must tell somebody about what is happening.
Words do hurt, and calling someone ‘fat’ or ‘stupid’ can have a negative effect on them, often for a long time.
People don’t find insults funny – bullies do.
ChildLine is one of the major services helping young people on a daily basis with all manner of issues. Teachers are there to help, too. The last thing your family and friends want to see is you getting hurt. No two people are the same, which is why bullying is so ridiculous! Bullies just want a reaction, don’t give them the satisfaction and tell somebody, before matters get worse.
by Courtney Andrews