Bullying: The effects and affects - part 1

I write this blog from a personal perspective as I too have been a victim of bullying.

I have found it a difficult subject to address as bullying can lead to devasting effects as recent news highlights the alarming rise of suicide due to bullying.

The problem with finding any statistics on bullying here in the UK is difficult as it is often under-reported for a variety of victicms. Due to my own personal cirumstances I found it difficult to report bullying when I was at school mostly due to the shame I felt. Later in life when I thought about it, it was mostly anger that I felt towards the bullies, I wanted to hurt them like they had hurt me. The shame around bullying is so often not understood or acknowledged that reporting true statistics is an impossible task and therefore we can only use them as guides. Rest assured though that actual figures are potentially misleading and it continues to remain highly unreported.

Regrettably, Bullying Statistics UK further reveals that an estimated twenty children and adolescents successfully commit suicide every year due to the pressures and trauma of ‘bullycide’, the term now popularly used for being bullied.

There is an endless stream of actors and actresses who have been the victims of bullying. What they all share in common though is the advice that they wished they’d heard when they were kids – that it does get better. But what happens if and when it doesn’t? The effects of bullying can last for years and for some leads to anxiety, depression, low self-esteem, post traumatic stress disorder and the worse case scenario suicide.

There are also several different types of bullying including more recently cyber bulling. However bulling also occurs within a variety of environments to include home, school and workplace.  Bullying can also take different forms such as scapegoating certain members of society for example those who are disabled, gay, military and even ginger. What unites bullies is the need to feel better about themselves, they are often mistaken for stronger personalities. The chosen victim(s) are often targeted due to their own strengths, their ability to fit in and often stronger than they give themselves credit.

So what can we do to help both children, adults and those who bully some perspective on the matter. In the following blogs I will write to each of these groups to let them know what they can do help themselves. For children and adults alike the effects of bullying cannot ever be underestimated and it is always important to ensure that your voice and concerns are heard. To those that bully – I think its important that you are included in the following blogs as the reason for your bullying are often the very thing that hurts you the most.