Photo Credited To: The Anti-Defamation League
“Sticks and stones may break my bones, but words will never hurt me.”
Parents will tell their children that bullying is a part of life and to turn the other cheek. However, 78% of children and teenagers have admitted to being bullied and 34% of children have admitted to being cyber-bullied. Vengeful students are known to go on killing sprees because of elicit behavior shown by their peers. Bullying is a nationwide issue that can be overlooked by our fellow Americans and it’s up to society to advocate for change.
Primary and secondary schools have begin to create anti-bullying programs for students, increasing awareness. Teachers have suggested that web-seminars be held each semester at school involving students and parents to recognize the warning signs of a bullied child. Peers can encourage victims positively by being by a good friend, helping them embrace them selves, telling them they are not alone, and participate in positive activities. Teachers can play a huge role by being knowledgeable and observant of their students in the classrooms and set positive expectations.
“If changes are not made, then it could take a turn for the worst”, says Principal Perez of Angeles Mesa Elementary in Los Angeles, CA. The effects of bullying can be detrimental, causing psychological and social problems. Also, children tend to decrease academically which is a warning sign of one being picked on. Children who are bullied suffer psychologically leading to many suicidal thoughts. According to the Centers for Disease Control, 15% of students considered attempting suicide.
Everyone deals with some sort of bullying in their lifetime which is a better reason why this issue should be addressed more often. There may not be scientific proof that bullying leads to suicide, but there are more than enough studies conducted that show bullying does play a huge factor in adolescent and teenage suicide.
The more attention this issue receives, the more awareness is spread. More social awareness can save a child’s life. Trust, if there was a way to travel back in time to prevent my classmates from teasing me and yelling “Fluffy Bear”, I would. Help other children and students by addressing the social issue of bullying.