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Effects of bullying

Many people falsely think that bullying others as well as getting bullied by others is a part of everyone’s life. Contrary to this misbelief, the truth is that bullying affects an individual beyond anyone’s imagination and in some adverse cases; the victims of bullying are forced to take extreme steps, which can be dangerous to them as well as the accused. Many people also defend the practice of bullying by saying that it is a part of growing up and that it helps kids in standing up for themselves. While some kids do actually stand up to themselves and fight back; there are others who just crumble down into introvert and recluse individuals. These kids not only face problems while growing up; rather the effect of bullying stays with them for a long time, sometimes for their entire lifetime.

effects of bullying essay

Adverse effects of bullying:

Depression and anxiety

Needless to say, kids who are bullied experience depression on various different levels depending on the severity of bullying. While most of the kids do not talk about bullying initially at their homes; parents should always keep a check on their child’s behavior and level of interaction in order to detect any such problem at the earliest. Children who are bullied often do not feel comfortable in talking about it. The level of anxiety and depression can cause serious issues; hence parents should be more like friends with kids so that they can discuss their problems without hesitation.

Related: Autism Awareness essay

Changes in sleeping and eating patterns

The feeling of being insulted is not easy to take; especially when you are dealing with kids. Children who are being bullied are often not able to eat properly. They also find it very difficult to fall asleep; knowing that the same humiliating routine is waiting for them the next day. If you notice that your child is not eating properly or if they are not getting enough sleep, it is high time you should talk to them regarding any issues that they may be facing.

Feeling of sadness and loneliness

One of the most common effects of bullying is the feeling of loneliness and sadness. Kids who get bullied at school are seen spending lesser time with their parents and siblings. These kids also refrain themselves from going out as well as mingling with peers. The reason is that these kids are going through extreme mental stress and disappointment. The fear of being bullied also makes them recluse.

Loss of interest in their favorite activities

Is there some activity that your kid used to love before but has now completely lost interest in? If yes, there are chances that your child is being bullied and he/ she is thinking about it all the time. When kids are under stress, they tend to lose interest in even their favorite activities.

Decreased academic achievement

Children who are bullied tend to lose interest in studies as well and this clearly reflects on their report cards. If your otherwise intelligent kid is facing problems in scoring well, chances are that they are being bullied and are unable to cope with the humiliation and stress.

Bullying has several adverse effects on a child’s mind and it can affect their life to a very large extent.


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7 responses to “Effects of bullying”

  1. Tim says:

    I was bullied in school and I can tell you that its really horrible. As a kid, I was always scared of that big guy who would bully me for no reason. It was fear of that guy I always found excuses to not go to school and that effected my studies a lot.

    The best thing a kid could do is talk to his/her teachers/parents about it.

  2. James broad says:

    A very insightful post about a very important subject that effects the teens that we work with at Global Kids every day. Violence as a part of their lives is much larger than the word “bullying” or “cyberbullying.”

    Cruelty, intolerance, acts of crime, dissing in the hallway, YouTube videos of fights etc are all part of connected cycles of violence. That said, there are targeted interventions at all stages that can give kids ways out. Thanks for sharing this.

  3. Chas Harlow says:

    Teaching children to know, identify, and deal successfully with bullying would require the start of relearning civility at an early age. Teens who have been subjected to the dumping down of America by the FOX News Syndicate and current right wing “do not think too much” educational outlets have no chance of overcoming the indoctrination process.

  4. John says:

    One time assemblies are not enough. The critical strategy for preventing mistreatment (from exclusion, gossip, put downs, bullying, physical contact)is to incorporate multiple layers of prevention. From policies to programs to empowering students are a key parts of the solution. One is called, Safe School Ambassadors. This program trains key student bystanders to work with their peers to intervene in and deescalate mistreatment using nonviolent communication skills. I have worked on school climate issues with over 200 schools nationwide and provided training to students, parents and teachers and all of them need to be part of the solution to prevention. Building empathy is key but so is awareness and skills for intervening effectively.

  5. smpgill says:

    As a parent, in Ireland, I am faced with the ever increasing challenges that are described in this piece. I also see, within the local community, similar problems with the local teenage population. It is quite true that understanding is the key to confronting such issues with children of any age. But the understanding link must go two ways. It is not only important that you have an understanding of the child, but the child has an understanding of you.
    There must also be a respectful relationship, as most teenagers, through TV and Radio, have learned that respect is the key to power, etc. It is probably not totally true, but they believe in it and so to get through to them we must grab hold of what, at first, is their understanding of the world as they see it. We must become adaptive, and remain adaptive to keep up with their constantly evolving, media-driven view of the world.
    You also need to remember that they are also trying to be adults, the same way that we were trying at their age. Try and look back at what you did at that age and what you put your teachers, and parents, through in your youth. You can argue, complain and study till you are blue in the face, but if you aren’t willing to get stuck into the task of understanding the individuals involved you will never be able to solve the problems. They are still trying to understand their environment, and their lives, and that lack of experience and over feeding of media junk is not helping, but it is the world that we live and we just have to face up to the situation as it will not go away.
    Try to be sympathetic, and empathic, but also realise that if they see something working they will take note, so lead by example. So much bullying is passive. Home lives, relationships, families and friends all contribute to their environment, and so help to create the source of the frustration leading to bullying.
    It is sometimes hard to realise that we as parents could be the source, and so must become part of the solution. Either way the task is not simple. We all have a responsibility to teach the youth of today, and empathise with them. We must all adapt and accept responsibility for our on failures and begin the reducation of ourselves and stop blaming it on individuals, like teachers. They are only looking for new ideas to face the problems, but atleast they are trying. We should support them and give them helpful tips and possible motivation ideas. We need to open communication channels as early as possible and keep them open.

    Anyway Danah Boyd has a lot of useful information here and she deserves all the credit in the world for addressing the problem. Maybe somebody could keep the torch going???!



  6. Anon says:

    As an educator who has worked with many different types of violence and bully prevention programs, I want to express huge appreciation for this on point article. You pick up what so many adults miss, and this is exactly why most of these programs are less than effective.


  7. Anon says:

    I greatly appreciate this article and all the comments on it. I have been working in schools and communities for a number years teaching peace and conflict resolution skills.

    Everyone always asks me for anti-bullying program. I must tell them that in my humble opinion there is no one piece of curriculum that can address the issue. It has to be multi-layered and address a number of social interactions and responses to those interactions.

    Also, what are we as adults teaching our youth? Are we teaching them to have respect for ourselves and others? Or are we teaching them that the tearing down, humiliating, insulting, and physical abuse of others is how we get and maintain power and power is respect. I remember when the TV show “Friends” first started using the word “bitch” to refer to a friend to elicit laughter. How can we combat that? How can we explain to little Caucasian children that it’s not okay to refer to your African American friend as a nigga if all the African American friends are calling each other that? How can I explain to a teenage African American male that no one, NO ONE has the right to call him a nigger if his parents calling him one?

    I will often refuse to work with a school or youth development agency if I can’t first provide training for the faculty/staff. Many a time I entered a school and found that the bullying began with the teachers. I see teacher to teacher, teacher to student, principal to teacher, student to student, and so bullying happening. Thus, I firmly believe that bullying does not stop when we exit the doors of our high schools. Nor does it really change its face. I regularly observe overt bullying among adults.

    As I have been working with adults, I can tell you it’s never too late to begin this type of re-socialization, it just may take longer to accomplish your goals. As I often say when you do this type of work, “you’re reversing a life-time of socialization”.

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