By: Audrey Anne Almonina
Bullying is evident almost everywhere. Almost anyone can experience and suffer from it. Whether it’s physical or verbal abuse, both poses a threat to the victims and−yes, even the bully and those who witness bullying are negatively affected.
To start off, let me discuss the negative impacts of bullying to the victims. Kids who are bullied are prone to increased rates of depression and anxiety, as well as sadness and loneliness. Their school performance may be drastically affected as they are more likely to skip classes or drop out. They may also suffer from health problems such as headaches or stomach aches. Bullying also causes long-term damage to self-esteem. Kids who had been bullied before are more likely to bully others as well in order for them to feel superior−something they didn’t get when they were bullied. Aside from these, bullying has also been hugely associated with suicide along with other factors like family problems and stress.
Even the bullies can be affected. Kids who bully can also resort to violent and risky behaviors by the time of their adulthood. They have higher of chances of engaging in alcohol and drug abuse, fights, vandalizing properties, dropping out of school, criminal acts, and other abusive acts. When they bully others, they feel powerful so they tend to do it repeatedly. This can affect the way they think. ‘If they bully others, they gain power’. They may get a wrong perception of superiority.
The bystanders −those kids who witness acts of bullying−can also be negatively affected. They can also experience increased mental health problems including depression and anxiety. Witnessing acts of violence and harshness affects them psychologically.
So before anything else, here’s a warning: STOP BULLYING BEFORE IT’S TOO LATE. You don’t know if the person you are bullying has other problems and you are only adding up to their burden. For you, those words and insults, slaps and kicks might mean nothing but for them, those are deadly hurdles they have to go through each day you bully them. You wouldn’t know how hard their life is until you walk in their shoes.
If you know someone who is a bully, talk them over it. Tell them to stop. And if you know someone who’s being bullied, comfort them and help ease their pain. Bullying does not only leave physical scars, but emotional scars as well. Be a life saver and do the right thing.
The negative impacts that bullying brings can damage a person for a lifetime and affect their goals and dreams. So before things get too late, it’s time to step up and act. SAY NO TO BULLYING!