Bullying has become a very hot topic in every school right from the elementary level to high school level. Researchers have also worked hard to establish the diversity of bullying in schools, the impact and what can be done to eliminate bullying in schools. It is our hope therefore that in the recent future, much will have been done to eliminate and reduce bullying in our society. However bullying by its nature is not something that can be eliminated or done away instantly. To my understanding, bullying is something which is embedded into human nature. There are those people who are aggressive and take pleasure and delight when they instill suffering to the less powerful people. Therefore bullying is not something to be eliminated but suppressed. This essay is therefore about the ways of stopping bullying but rather an exposure of the consequences of bullying especially to the psychological well being of an individual and also to examine what the programs have managed to undo these negative effects to the victims.
Bullying in school is very common which leads to negative consequences to the right of students to be in an environment free from harm. A learning environment for students should be secure and safe. It should be a place where students are not threatened by intimidation or bullying because of who they are either, physically, emotionally or what they believe in. Bullying has a lot of long-term effects to students which include emotional effect, physical effect and even psychological effect. Bulling affects the victims, the bystanders and the one perpetrating bullying in the school. The school, environments is also tampered by bullying because students will always be afraid to go to schools. A person who bullies others aims at dominating other students and wanting to gain power. Bullying has been categorized in to various forms. There is physical bullying which involves spitting on others, pushing, kicking hitting and destroying some else property. There is also psychological bullying which involves being excluded from a peers group, spreading rumors and manipulation relationship in the social setting, intimidation and extortion also causes a lot of psychological disturbances because they are forms of bullying. Verbal bullying includes threatening someone, malicious teasing, taunting and calling names (Piotrowski, & Hoot, 2008)
Many schools and communities face the problem of bullying which has very negative consequences to people on a given community. Scholl going children face a lot of bullying from their colleagues. Some are not victims of bullying but are very aware that bullying happens in the school environment. Students who have suffered bullying incidences even at a very early age have carried the experience at the back of their mind into adulthood. Bullying has a lot of psychological impact on s an individual. Bullying also affects the emotional and physical being of a person. Many people have endured bullying in their life time; some are similar while others are unique. Currently schools and higher learning institutions are designing programs to help in the prevention of bullying. Bullying happens in two ways; it can either be through psychological. Or through physical ways which happens repeatedly over time causing an imbalance of power of the victim and the bully. bullying only happens when there are tow people of different psychological and physical strength . The behavior done by the bullies is always hurtful against those who are seen tom being weakling and are unable to defend themselves because of their small body size.
Facts about bullying
Bullying has been estimated across the various schools all around the United States. The top rated five states with the highest amount of bullying cases are Illinois, New York California, Pennsylvania and Washington. The rate of bullying in high schools is on the increase at a significantly significant from 15 % of reported cases each month to ten times more statistics show that 23% of students at the elementary level have reported to being bullied more than once within a period of one month but many of the reported cases are unknown to school administrators because thy also fear for their well being. This leaves many cases of unreported cases of bullying (Piotrowski, & Hoot, 2008). Across the states it was found that 100, 000 students have carried guns and other dangerous weapons to school.
Cyber bullying thorough the various technological innovations have also become rampant in most learning institutions students have used words to taint the images of other people in a negative way through hate messages. Bullying usually takes place in places which are least supervised by the adults these can be inclusion s when the teacher is not around, in bus stops, in the locker rooms, hallways, restrooms and in locker rooms. Boys and girls get involved in bullying other students. However many researches have shown those boys are more likely to be victims and to be bullies more than girls (Cohn and canter, 2003). Research has also shown that at middle school level, bullying is always at its peak but later drops by grade 12 and 11. The most common form of bullying at the middle school level is harassments and verbal abuse which may be accompanied by derogatory comments and isolation and social exclusion. Other forms of bullying taking place in school include public humiliation, sexual and racial harassment, threats and physical violence as well as destruction of property. Bullying done among boys is more on physical aggression while the girls use social exclusion and teasing. (Nansel et. al 2001)
Bullying by race or ethnicity is also a common aspect in some schools. In 2006, Indicators of School Crime and Safety reported that white students were highly to be bullied compared to Black and Hispanic students. Also students from the rural areas were more likely to report cases of bullying than those in modern areas. Survey carried out by retrospective bullying experiences survey in Britain have shown that students who have been bullied have the feeling and thoughts of committing suicide, 20% of those studies had attempted to commit suicides after being bullied while those who had not experienced bullying were only 3% who had attempted suicide.
Effects of bullying
The bullies are those who engaging in intimidating others, calling them names, and hurtfully teasing others. They do so to who are smaller in size and least able to defend themselves because they believe to be more superior. The bullies are physically aggressive and they hit and fight others with no mercy. The aim of the bullies is to gain power and dominance over the other peers. The bullies appreciate and praise the use of violence making them to have low level of insecurity or anxiety. They also feel low empathy for those who cannot defend themselves but instead they blame them for being weak. Bullies have also been known to have high level of self esteem and they find fulfillment when they make other people suffer (Olweus, 2003).
Due to peer pressure students who are not bully and aggressive nature may also bully others because they want to be accepted into the dropouts., bullying in school leads to the creation of an unsafe and a place which is disconnected. A study by Bradsahw, Oâ€™Brennan and Sawyer (2008) has shown that out of 16, 012 studentâ€™s studies from middle and high school level, 37.6% have experienced bullying. The only aggressive students were in support of bullying. Based on the various researches in schools, bullying has remained to be common form of violence.
Various laws across the states have been passed to regulate bullying in schools so far 25 states of laws on bullying which do not deal with prevention but on mandate report of bullying in order to create a safe place for students where they can learn with no fear. According to Social Cognitive theory (Bindura, 2001), adolescent and youth who are engaged in bullying, both the victim and proprietor, or even those who are bullied and they bully others, they will view the school environment from a negative point of view which is totally different from how students who have not been exposed to bullying perceive the school to be like.
Through examining the various actions and practices done by those who bully others, it will be possible to develop intervention policies and create programs related with ways of suppressing bullying to make the school safe by examining the students of high potential to involve in bullying problems and subsequently get involved with violent acts in the schools and later to the community at large. The prevalence of bullying is seen as being much of a long term practices which has been in existence for decades but the various studies conducted have only showed the negative and long term effects of bullying (Viadero, 2003, p 6).
Bullying affect the bullies, the victim and even the bystanders because it is associated with various patterns of behaviors and attitudes which are related to various risks. The youths who are bullies are aggressive and impulsive while their victims are insecure anxious and have no power of defending themselves. The proprietors of bulling behaviors are hyperactive and they know that they are not liked by others. They are also associated with high risk of having some mental problems (Cullingford, & Morrison, 1995).
The victims are always seen to be weak and can be easily manipulated or dominated. Many of these children are from families which their parents are over protective or thy have close relatives who will always defend them. This makes the children to have ways of developing self protective skills to help them cope with various challenges. Victims who have been intimidated live an isolated life; they find it difficult to make friends especially with children of his age group. They avoid places which do not have adults like teachers such places are the restroom or locker rooms(Piotrowski, & Hoot, 2008).
The perceptions of students to bullying
Various studies have been done to examine the effects of bullying to the school, environments, the bullies, bystanders and the victims. The various incidences of bullying in school setting usually have negative consequences to the studies. It tampers with the environment which should be safe and clam for them to effectively learn. The victims end up freeing going to school because they are not treated with respect by their colleagues (Langman, 2009). The victims of bullying usually have a rough time to properly concentrate in their class work and even in other important extra curricular activities. This makes them to perform poorly. they will also find excuses to be absent from school such as through feigning sickness or worse still it may make a students to drop out from school . A victim of bully acts shows signs of loneliness, and anti social behaviors. He will have low self esteem, feels insecure and fear being in schools. This may last up to ones adulthood and he or she may suffer from various metal health problems like depression (Piotrowski, & Hoot, 2008).
Bullies have also experience negative results from their habits. They may face various challenges after finishing school because they would not have good reputation conduct written in their recommendation letters. Most of them are also expelled leading them to dropping out of school. After dropping out of schools such students have ended up living a lie of serving with criminal activities such as vandalism fighting, shoplifting and abusing drugs and alcohol. Such students cause harm to others because they may be carrying harmful weapons. The bystanders also suffer from the effect of bullying. These are the people who witness others being victimized. They will always end up experiencing posttraumatic stress, alcohol anxiety. fear , depression, and may decide to indulge in alcohol and other drugs. ( Shellard , 2002).
In summary there are both long term and short term effects of bullying the, the sort term effects include depression, anger anxiety thorough avoiding places which are mostly likely to be bullied, illness, suicidal thoughts, poor grades to the bullied students. The long term effects of bulling include reduced opportunities after schools, lack of trust to others. One experiences bitterness, revenge feelings, difficulty of interpersonal aspects; they avoid social settings because of fear; they might end up being loners, have low self esteem and are highly sensitive (Piotrowski, & Hoot, 2008).
Program for suppressing bullying
Schools have made effort of developing policies and programs of preventing bullying in schools. Schools must realize that bullying has a great damage to the self esteem and identity of students. Such students who have experiences traumatic experiences in the past are in need of healing from the emotional to the physical pain. Bullied students need to be reassured that they will be provided with a safe environment which would restore their self image, feel control over their urge and moods. They should also be helped to be ambitious and hopeful for ten good things in front of them (Beran,, & Shapiro, 2005).
Schools have therefore to develop programs based on cognitive behavioral therapy which can confront the anger and depression students may be experiencing. Schools also have to developed programs for suppressing and even preventing incidences of bullying. The school administration is the main point in determining the general behavior in the school, schools administrators should also ensure that there are good communication channels where students can report incidences of bullying because this is the only way through which the perpetrators can be identified and punished.
Elementary and preschool should develop anti bullying programs with in the schools. These programs should be made to be continuous where students can participate in the programs like in clubs. These programs are meant to help students change their thinking. The bullies can be helped to avoid ways of developing good habits. The programs help students. The programs address how students can be good leaders and to know the consequences of bullying because most of them are unaware. The programs should also include role plays to demonstrate to students what bullying is all about. Different cultures should also be included in the programs to teach students on how to appreciate one another despite the cultural or ethnic background one is coming from. Parents should be involved in helping with the designing of anti bullying campaigns (Carrol,& Connaughton, 2010).
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