MY VIEW: Bullying is an everyday occurrence

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  It happens all the time. Most of the time we ignore it. Bullying is everywhere. We’ve been conditioned to accept it in everyday life. 

  When you think of bullying, your mind goes straight to the physical type, but in reality social and verbal bullying are more common.

  It might surprise you to know that teachers are more likely to let bullying happen rather than stop it. In fact, the number one place that students are bullied is in the classroom. Less than 30 percent of students who are bullied report incidents to an adult for fear of increased bullying. That means 70 percent do not tell!

  If you’re getting bullied you feel a sense of embarrassment to tell an adult you’re experiencing bullying due to the anxiety of being told that you’re overreacting. 

  Common excuses to disguise bullying are “boys will be boys” and girls are just “tattle tales”. If you’re told this enough times, you are led to believe that it is normal, and the bullying continues.

  When an adult doesn’t take you seriously you begin to think that no adults will and your life spirals into a living nightmare. You have no allies. You are alone. After all, isolation is a bully’s best friend. What others perceive as joking is painful to the targeted victim. 

  Gossip, social media, and physical acts of violence (“We always hit each other. It doesn’t hurt”) are all ways a bully can target someone in an everyday situation which appears ordinary to the people around them. 

  Often people don’t stand up to these acts because they are afraid they will get bullied as well. They adopt the “better him than me” attitude. 

  Most bullies have been bullied themselves and often in their own homes, so they repeat a the bullying that has happened to them. Prior abuse, however, does not excuse their actions now.

  I know that many of the worst bullies are female. They are malicious. I’ve seen two girls have an argument. One of them is so determined to be right that she is willing to do anything to bring the other one down. This is how it happens. One girl will start a rumor about another girl which spirals to every person both girls know because that’s how females are. Then the bully will take her efforts so far as to turn everyone against the victim in order to feel as if she’s won.

  Bullying is about having power over someone else–power that isn’t yours to take. Bullying is selfish. The only way for a bully to stop, is for someone else to stop them. 

  When faced with bullying or someone else being bullied, use kindness, confidence, and most importantly, strength to stop this harassment. Strength in numbers is important because bullies revel in isolating their targets.

  I made a decision in my life long ago to stomp down bullying. If you’re going to bully me, to take it somewhere else because I have too much positivity in my life to handle your negativity. Don’t let bullying conquer you. You conquer the bully!

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