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Bullying Affects Children And Adults

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Bullying Affects Children and Adults

Many problems in society need public attention, bullying is one of the top problems. The problem of bullying affects everyone in some aspect whether it is by being the victim, victimizer, and both the victim and the victimizer, friend, or family member of the victim or victimizer, or just a bystander that does nothing to prevent this problem. Bullying affects people both young and old.

"When you think of a bully, you might not picture a young child. While bullying is most

common in the elementary and secondary grades, it is important for early childcare and education programs to be aware that associated bullying behaviors begin early even into the preschool years." (Healthy Child Care 2006).

When one thinks of a bully, the image of a movie villain may come into their minds. This is not always the case. In reality, a victimizer of bullying can be male or female, small or large, young or old. "Bullying has no social, financial, or cultural boundaries." (Oakland Tribune 2006) The act of bullying changes as the age of the victim and victimizer becomes older.

In the preschool and elementary years, the acts of bullying may seem minimal or insignificant. This may not be the case. Preschoolers bully by pushing and shoving, taking toys away, teasing, and leaving a child out of a playgroup. We have all seen a preschool bully, whether it is at the playground, the supermarket, at school, or at home with our own children. Luckily, small children are usually more forgiving and forgetful of this bad behavior than older children and adults. This naivety can be a good thing. Although, the effects can still be harmful to a small child by encouraging the victimizer or by setting the scene for what is likely to face the victim in the future.

Adolescence is the age that bullying becomes rampant and more involved. Barbara Coloroso, author of The Bully, the Bullied, and the Bystanders, found that "86% of students between the ages of 12 and 15 get bullied at school." (Gifted Child Today2004) Bullying at this age is the most detrimental to the child. An adolescent is one who is easily persuaded and affected by bad behavior. Depression and suicidal tendencies arise more often in this age. Peer pressure is very relevant, making the feelings of inadequacy or the pressure to tease a person more prevalent.

How Common Is Teen Bullying?

National Survey of students in grades 6 to 10. (School Bullying and Teen Bullying Statistics 2006).

During adolescence, the methods of bullying change. Physical and emotional bullying increase and become more severe. Technology today makes the act of bullying easier to accomplish. A new term for bullying is cyber-bullying.

"Savvy students are using Instant Messaging, e-mails, chat rooms to humiliate a peer. No longer can parents count on seeing the tell-tale physical signs of bullying - a black eye, bloody lip, torn clothes. But the damage done by cyber bullies is no less real, and can be infinitely more painful." (i-SAFE Inc. 2003-2004)

This mental and emotional harassment is easier for the victimizer to accomplish with the use of internet technology.

Boys are not the only bullies. Female bullying is becoming more apparent in today's schools. "In a survey of 337 local middle school and high school girls, more than half the respondents said they had been victims of bullying by other girls." (State Journal Register 2006) The entertainment realm is making light of this phenomenon, but this is a real life problem. The entertainment business loves to show a catfight or a fight between two females. This behavior is

shown in television programs, movies, books, and magazines. Society promotes this bad behavior by engaging in all of the entertainment business promotions of bullying. When a person purchases a movie ticket, watches a television show, or buys a magazine containing the act of bullying; then this is adding to the problem of bullying.

The number of bullying incidents decreases the older a person gets, but does not stop completely. In a study performed by Rowan University, it is found that "... it's not uncommon for elementary school bullies to continue bullying throughout their high school and college years. And the same apparently goes for people who have been targets of bullies." (Chapell 2006) In 2004, Chapell performed a study that found...

"Bullying of college students by teachers or coaches does occur. His most recent study found that verbal bullying of students was the most common type of bullying used by both college teachers and coaches. Social bullying was the next most common."

As an adult, one would think that this immature behavior would end. Unfortunately, this is not the case and sometimes continues into adulthood and the workplace. Workplace bullying can come from a coworker. This coworker may be jealous of a person or may be trying to perform better than another person does. This jealousy and competitive nature can result in tension and animosity in the workplace. One case of this workplace bullying was managed by the judicial system. Christine Pratt reported, "Sue Preston, deputy head teacher at Cathedral School of St Mary in Plymouth, claimed 'constructive dismissal after the head made her life a total misery'." (2006) This teacher won her case and the head was given constructive dismissal. A report performed by Pratt found "53 percent of workers she interviewed had experienced bullying first hand or witnessed it." (2006) One would hope that with many cases going through the judicial system that people would become more aware of their actions and the consequences that come from these actions. Unfortunately, there have been times when bullying has become volatile. This evidence can be seen through media reports.

Bullying can also come from the one who is in charge or the boss of a victim. One can only speculate on why this occurs. There could be a need to feel respect from their employees. Another speculation is that the boss may feel that their bullying behavior improves the way people perform their jobs by staying on task for fear of the consequences. In reality, the morale of a company diminishes and a person's self-esteem and confidence level decreases.

This act of bullying is becoming more apparent to society through public awareness and school programs. To end this problem, awareness and knowledge of bullying must be made a reality. Many schools are



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