Bullying can cause a life of traumatizing pain for students
Among the issues teens face, bullying has more effects than just throughout high school years. Student Assistance Program (SAP) coordinator Ms. Bonnie Rouke feels that not only can students be affected at school, they can feel the effects of bullying for the rest of their lives. “[It depends] on how long the bullying had gone on or what may have been said, or even whether it was dealt with or not. That’s why we really would like to know about it,” said Ms. Rouke. “We encourage students to not be bystanders and let it happen. The best way to prevent bullying is to get everybody out there and stop it.”
Being bullied can have drastic consequences. A good example is Amanda Todd, a Vancouver-area teenager who was cyber bullied according to The Huffington Post. This young girl was found dead in Coquitlam, Canada. She had committed suicide in an attempt to free herself of constant bullying.
Amanda Todd felt that people treated her differently, according to The Huffington Post, because of what happened to her in the past and how she sent a nude picture of herself to a stranger. “You would feel differently towards people, because you wouldn’t know how to act around that person. Especially depending on how you yourself were treated,” said Carly Broadwell (9) “things could dramatically change for you.”
“Two of the main reasons people are bullied in schools are because of appearances and social status,” according to experts at The Teens Health Association. The fight that happened two weeks ago is something that was widely discussed. “It was planned,” said Nick Francisco(10). “When I walked out, that’s when I went down and grabbed the other person. They were planning against my friend and I knew what I had to do. When the bully ran towards my friend, I grabbed him and threw him to the ground.”
According to Daily Inter Lake News, educating students about verbal, nonverbal and physical bullying could help in the process to prevent bullying. “We should have told someone. I should have definitely spoken up but I was stubborn,” said Nick,“What should have happened is that one of us should have told our teacher because we knew that it was being planned.”
“The more popular a middle –or- high school kid becomes central to the social network , the more aggressive behavior he/she engages in,” according to Time Magazine. “It has to do with one-upmanship,” said Micheal Zelenak(10), “Being better or stronger than somebody else. And in order to do that you have to put another person under you.”
According to the NASP, when children receive negative messages or physical punishment at home, they tend to attack before being attacked. “I believe that if someone is being mean to you then you are bound to be mean to someone else,” said Ashley Chang (9). “And if someone is nice to you then you’re bound to be nice to someone else.”
A new program is focused on diminishing bullying in schools. Bria Wooten (12) and Juliana Scialabba (12) are setting up a program where kids can share their experiences, without being identified. In English classes there is a box to share the experiences of students within the school.
Rachel’s Challenge, a program started by the family of Columbine victim Rachel Scott, is returning to the school. “Rachel had this goal,” said Bria, “that if everyone could be nice to someone, that it can start a chain reaction. And we want to bring that to our school, to bring that kindness to our environment,” she said.