HELP FOR TEENS EXPERIENCING BULLYING
Bullying has become an increasingly problematic issue amongst the youth in the United States.
Bullying is defined as a young person being emotionally or physically hurt on purpose by another person or people. The victim will typically be bullied more than once and will be unable to stop it from occurring. There are times, especially during one’s adolescence that a young person may offend or hurt another person, accidentally. It is important to note that bullying is done so intentionally and with the deliberate goal of making a teen feel threatened, intimated, and or powerless.
There is no singular reason that causes a teen to bully. A young person might bully due to peer pressure. A teen may bully because it makes him or her feel powerful. Bullying can be the result of a person attempting to deal with anger and or low self-esteem issues. An adolescent may bully because he or she lacks empathy. It is difficult to pinpoint one singular reason for bullying, as there could be a combination of reasons for a young person to act out through bullying.
Bullying does not only occur only in schools; it can happen anywhere. In fact, there is a whole subcategory of bullying called cyberbullying. This is when a teenager uses various forms of technology (social media, cell phones, emails, photographs…etc.) to cause harm to someone else. Unfortunately, the turmoil that is caused by bullying can have dire consequences.
Bullying can occur physically and or emotionally. Examples of physical bullying are as follows:
• Yelling at someone
• Tripping someone
• Shoving someone
• Making rude gestures towards someone
• Hitting someone
• Punching someone
• Biting someone
• Spitting at someone
Some examples of emotional bullying are listed below:
• Trying to make someone feel bad about their identity
• Making fun of someone
• Name calling
• Lying about someone
• Purposefully excluding someone
• Starting erroneous rumors about someone
• Laughing at someone
Effects of Bullying
There are many adverse effects that bullying can cause. It is highly common for a teen to blame him or herself for being bullied. A teenager who has been bullied will often feel unsafe, alone, helpless, and or afraid. Depression and anxiety can manifest in a young person who has been bullied. Furthermore, research indicates from studies conducted at Yale University, that victims of bullying are between two to nine times more likely to consider suicide than non-victims.
Unfortunately, bullying is all too common in American society. It is essential that the detrimental effects of bullying be brought into the limelight, as the only way for change is to draw attention to the issue. Young people who bully do so because of an underlying reason. That said, no victim of bullying deserves to be bullied. Regardless of whether your teenager bullies or is being bullied, taking active steps to change the behavior is imperative.
Creating a safe environment for your adolescent to feel comfortable talking about bullying can be helpful in reducing the problem. Open and honest conversations with your teen about his or her friendships and relationships can help illuminate whether or not bullying is present in his or her life. If you are unsure as to how to broach the topic with your teenager, or are unclear as to how to best be supportive, requesting the help of a mental health professional can be beneficial.
Every family in need of mental health treatment must select a program that will best suit the needs of their family. When one member of a family struggles, it impacts everyone in the family unit. In order to maximize the benefits of treatment we work closely with the entire family to ensure that everyone is receiving the support they need through these difficult times.
Seeking help is never easy, but you are not alone! If you or someone you know is in need of mental health treatment, we strongly encourage you to reach out for help as quickly as possible. It is not uncommon for many mental health difficulties to impact a person’s life, long term. Seeking support at the beginning of one’s journey can put the individual in the best position to learn how to manage themselves in a healthy way so they can go on to live happy and fulfilling lives.
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