Bullying has always been a serious issue, but in previous decades it was mostly ignored and some are still not clear what it even is.
Thankfully, bullying is finally getting the attention it should with media coverage, implementation of school bullying prevention programs, and special educational anti bullying school assembly programs.
WHAT IS BULLYING?
SafeNetwork.org definition of Bullying: when someone keeps
doing or saying things to have power over another person.
The behavior can be verbal, emotional, and physical.
As the smallest person in every class the entire time I went to school, from a poor family, and teased about being the “Teacher’s Pet” because I got straight A’s most of the time, teasing turned dangerous when I got into Junior High School.
Judging by this graph on discipline problems by school year – Junior High also sometimes called Middle School ( usually grades 7 and 8 ) is when bullying is highest:
Looking back on it, the image of the girl bully who claimed the back seat in the school bus strikes me as funny. (Girls were not permitted to wear pants when I was in school.)
What isn’t so funny was the group of my peers who tried to take teasing to a physical level. I used teachers as cover (without them knowing it) to get from my class to the library. That usually worked – and when it didn’t, swinging my lunchbox around me kept them off.
Schools rarely protect students and every school has a bullying problem. Recess, lunch periods, gym class and sports – especially dodge ball – are favorite ways to terrorize victims.
If the school won’t stop what is happening to your child
YOU as the parent MUST protect them by changing schools
or even home schooling. FIND A WAY – MAKE A WAY –
YOU are ultimately responsible for their safety!
I don’t remember what kind of nightmares that caused, but I do know that I jumped so high every morning when my Mother woke me up that she finally asked why. I don’t remember what I told her, but my parents didn’t do anything about it and I dreaded lunch hour every day.
Advising victims that it is THEIR FAULT they are being bullied because they lack self-esteem or need to stand up for themselves is VERY BAD ADVICE.
Violent children are usually emulating violent adults – and violent adults love
to blame their victims: “he made me so mad” – “if only she didn’t…”
Blaming the victim instead of the perpetrators is dismissing their responsibility.
We must STOP the violent person – not blame the victims!
19 year old Brandon Hughes had decided to take his own life to stop the bullying. He wrote his suicide note – but couldn’t find a weapon – so he is still here to share WHY. Adults who do not understand why bullying is so serious need to hear what he has to say:
QUESTION: “Why do these children, whom psychologists have found to be exquisitely sensitive but mostly normal and untroubled, take such a drastic step?
“It’s like there is no escape,” Brandon says. “You can’t walk away, you have to go to school and interact with these people every single day. It wears you down.
The grown-ups, it seems, agree with the
bullies since they sometimes just laugh at it.
And then suddenly one day, you wake up and you can’t feel anything but the pain and you are convinced that you are just a piece of nothing.”
Parents need to stop thinking bullying is just
a “phase” and realize how dangerous it is.
Bullying is NOT a “right of passage” and it is far more common than most adults realize. It is not “harmless fun” or kids being “over-sensitive”.
Here are some additional bullying statistics provided by Statista:
Cyber bullying is an even larger problem than bullying in physical life is, with 47% of teens ages 12-17 reporting that they have witnessed online cruelty or meanness on social media sites like MySpace, Facebook, or Twitter:
In this excellent video on Bullying, Social Media & Suicide kids interviewed say they all lie about their age to use Facebook and NONE of the parents knew you are supposed to be 13 or over to use Facebook.
Sadly, the victims of bullying often can find no one to protect them or even take them seriously.
So many children have committed suicide
there is even a term for it: Bullycide.
How big a problems is “bullycide”?
“Bigger than most people think”, says Lucinda Franks at the Daily Beast, about bullycide. She cites the following statistics:
- About 50,000 teenagers attempt suicide each year – and 5,000 succeed
- About 250,000 teens a month say they’ve been physically attacked
- 30-60 percent say they’ve been attacked online.
A new study by the Cyberbullying Research Center found that about 20 percent of middle-schoolers said they’d seriously considered suicide, and that people who were bullied at school or online were almost twice as likely to attempt suicide.
- Phoebe Prince and the bullying phenomenon
- Brief Histories of Six Bullycides
- Ashley Billasano, High School Student, reported that she had been molested but no one believed her and because of that she was called horrible names; she tweeted 144 Times Before Committing Suicide – no one answered.
- The Bullicide of Brandon Swartwood ~ Bullies Who Kill
- Video Advocacy Example: Bullying, Social Media & Suicide
- Educators seek solutions to end school bullying
- Bullycide Memorial Page
Educators in the north-east U.S. are doing special anti-bullying school assemblies. Domino the Great is in Brooklyn, New York (Kings County) presenting four school assembly programs to stop bullying next MONDAY, November 28, 2011.
Domino is so passionate about doing whatever he can that he asked me to spread the word that he has this afternoon open and is willing to stay overnight and do two more schools each day. He told me that if schools team up while he is in their area, each school will save $150.00 on any of his assembly programs.
Other school entertainers are putting together anti-bullying programs. If they leave a comment here with a link I will add them to this page to make it easier for schools to locate them.
STOP THE BULLYING ASSEMBLY PROGRAMS:
- California ~ Bullying Prevention School Assembly Programs
- Illinois, Chicago ~ Midwest School Shows ~ Stop Bullying Programs
- Massachusetts ~ Domino the Great ~ Massachusetts Cyber Bullying Program Buddies Not Bullies
- Michigan, Chicago, Illinois ~ Midwest School Shows ~ Anti-Bullying Programs
- New Jersey ~ Domino the Great ~ New Jersey Bullying Assemblies
- New York ~ Domino the Great ~ Cyber Bullying New York School Assembly Programs
- Ohio ~ Stronger Than A Bully
- Possibly nationwide: Brooks Gibbs ~ End Bullying
- Multiple states USA and Canada ~ ReportBullying.com
- Anti-Bullying Week (UK)
- What to Do About Bullying
- How Do You Deal with Bullies in School?
- KidzWorld: What is Bullying
If you have additional resources (books, videos, presentations, etc.) you feel would be valuable to others you are encouraged to leave links to relevant information in the comments of this post.
Educational entertainers who have bullying programs will be added to the above list by location, so please include what states or countries you will travel to in your comment.
I encourage anyone who realizes someone is being bullied to reach out to them and offer your assistance. ADULTS can stop most school bullies before they grow up to be abusive adults.