Bullying Information and Facts

UNDERLYING CAUSES…

Why does bullying happen?

The aggressor has a need to feel more powerful and in control
► The target doesn’t feel very sure of themselves, is concerned about how they are being perceived, or is an extreme minority
► The bystanders feel immobilized and afraid to intervene
► Adults either aren’t paying attention, aren’t intervening when they see the behavior, and/or they don’t follow through or aren’t consistent in their responses.
► The culture supports and promotes getting needs met through violence.

Types of Bullying:
Bullying is a disrespectful behavior that is intentional and aggressive. Bullying is more than a disagreement and can be:

Physical – hitting, kicking, spitting, pushing, taking personal belongings

Verbal – taunting, teasing, name calling, gossiping, making threats

Social – spreading rumors, manipulating, excluding/isolating, intimidation, interfering with the friendships of others, cyberbullying, sexting.

How Does Bullying Impact Children?

Children and youth who are bullied tend to have more headaches, sleeping problems, and stomach aches than children who are not bullied.  They also have higher rates of moderate depression and thoughts of suicide than kids who aren’t bullied.

As children who are involved in bullying behavior grow up, they tend to commit more crimes, report higher rates of alcoholism and commit more spousal abuse than those who did not bully others when they were younger.

Why does bullying happen?

The aggressor has a need to feel more powerful and in control
► The target doesn’t feel very sure of themselves, is concerned about how they are being perceived, or is an extreme minority
► The bystanders feel immobilized and afraid to intervene
► Adults either aren’t paying attention, aren’t intervening when they see the behavior, and/or they don’t follow through or aren’t consistent in their responses.
► The culture supports and promotes getting needs met through violence.

DIFFERENCES BETWEEN CONFLICT AND BULLYING…

 


Normal Conflict


Bullying



Equal power


Imbalance of power



Happens occasionally


Repeated negative actions



Accidental


Purposeful



Not serious


Serious – threat of physical harm or emotional or
psychological hurt



Equal emotional reaction


Strong emotional reaction on part of the target



Not seeking power or attention


Seeking power and control



Not trying to get something


Trying to gain material things or power



Remorse – takes responsibility


No remorse – blames target



Effort to solve the problem


No effort to solve the problem

 

IMPACT OF BULLYING

Bullying was once considered a simple, harmless rite of childhood experienced by many students. Today, research shows that bullying has significant short- and long-term effects that impact education, health and safety.

  1. Education – Bullying can negatively impact a child’s access to education and lead to:
  • School avoidance and higher rates of absenteeism
  • Decrease in grades
  • Inability to concentrate
  • Loss of interest in academic achievement
  • Increase in dropout rates
  1. Health – Bullying can also lead to physical and mental health problems, including:
  • Headaches and stomachaches
  • Sleeping problems
  • Low self-esteem
  • Increased fear or anxiety
  • Depression
  • Post traumatic stress
  1. Safety – Bullying also impacts student sense of well-being, such as:
  • Self-isolation
  • Increased aggression
  • Self-harm and suicidal ideation
  • Feeling of alienation at school
  • Fear of other students
  • Retaliation

New Federal Website

In 2009, the Departments of Education and Health and Human Services joined forces with four other departments to create a federal task force on bullying. In August 2010, the task force staged the first ever National Bullying Summit, bringing together 50 top state, local, civic, and corporate leaders to begin mapping out a national plan to end bullying. The task force also launched a new website, www.bullyinginfo.org, which brings all the federal resources on bullying together in one place of the first time ever.