I taught high school for 33 years. During that time, I often observed an act of bullying taking place. Many cases bordered on the edge of just friendly teasing to intentionally trying to harm another. On some occasions, I even observed teachers being intimidated by students.
As a parent or teacher, it is crucial to be very observant of both parties. This is the only way to put an end to any form of bullying. I recently came across an article written by Emily Harrington, who works for Health Alliance. This article reviews general observations, that we should be on the lookout for, when it comes to bullying.
The Bully Characteristics
They are often making trips to the Principal’s office or receiving detentions. They have extra money or belongings that can not be explained. They are quick to point the blame at others. They never accept the responsibility for their actions. They need to win or get the last word in at all times. They run with others that like to pick on others. Finally, they try to standout in a crowd by their words or actions.
Because of the above actions, they are likely to get into fights. Have a strong desire to vandalize another’s property. They engage in sexual activity at a young age. They often establish a criminal record by the age of 24. They are also abusive to parents, siblings, spouses and their children.
The Bullied Characteristics
Bullied individuals are easier to pick out. They have unexplained injuries and torn clothes. They complain of being sick. They have a marked change in sleeping, eating and transit habits. Some extreme cases include running away, becoming introverted, skip school or work, lose interest in school and school work. They lose an interest to getting involved in other school activities.
Because of the above characteristics, bullied individuals have a higher risk of depression. They are more likely to have health complaints. Their over all grade point average tends to drop. They are more likely to drop out of school or quit their job. They are more likely to retaliate through extreme violent measures. Finally, they are more likely to becoming suicidal.
What To Do
Be very observant of the above characteristics. Seek help immediately. Take action. Bring attention of the problem to those in charge. Talk constantly with your children in a positive way about ending the crisis. If you get stone walled, pay a visit to the local authorities. There is no place in society for any form of bullying.
sources: Emily Harrington, Health Alliance