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Bystanders, Bullies, and Victims Oh My!

By , Oswego, IL
90% of 4th – 8th graders report of being victims of bullies. This number has grown for years and years way too much. Today, cell phones and public websites are being abused to bully kids and adults from a distance. Bullying has been one of the biggest problems in the United States for way too long. The effects of bullying are sometimes permanent, reasons are extreme, and not enough bystanders have the confidence to take a stand. America’s youth is being ruined because of this menace.

To begin with, the effects of bullies can last forever and some are more extreme than others. Suicide is a way out of bullying for a small amount of victims thankfully. Some victims consider suicide, but eventually get help. Some aren’t that lucky. For example, some victims don’t see the light of help in their tunnel. They think their life is pointless to live, all because of the bullies. As a result, suicide is the best way out in their minds. Schools have special bully awareness programs showed to the students, but sometimes, that’s just not enough. Too many victims think their state is helpless and don’t know there’s help for them. That’s not true at all. Victims become angry because the bully convinces them. They don’t like the life their living and get so angry, they end their believed pain. Suicide is the most extreme way to get out of anything. Bullies have forced the victims to ignore help and believe that they’re hopeless. Another effect is that families can be broken apart by bullying. Bullies often cause troubles at home with the parents and the children. Parents are annoyed by the treatment their child is being given, therefore making life harder for the whole family. The parents can also restrict help for their child. Fights and disagreements can get in the way of assistance. Targets to the bully can be scared of their parents from abuse or fights. Victims’ lives can be made much worse in their own home. This effect can possibly turn permanent, but that doesn’t mean there’s no way for help and recovery. Because of bullies, whole families break apart. Instead of the victim just needing help, the whole family will need therapy. Bullies can make very big differences in people’s lives, not just the victim’s. Depression is an extreme effect of bullying, but nevertheless, it still exists. Victims stop eating normally because of the bully calling them fat. Many people today over exaggerate on their weight, but adding bullies to the reason for it is even worse. Victims also sleep less than they need to be healthy. Bullies can scar victims severely, causing the victim to not sleep. Panic attacks consume the victim, wondering when and where the bully is going to strike next.

Furthermore, not all bullies like what they do, but can’t help themselves. Fear is a big factor in a bully’s reason. Past experiences can trigger a bully to get revenge on other people. Now, some people say that bullies absolutely hate their victims. While that may be true in some cases, some think they don’t have a choice. Some are even scared of being bullied themselves, therefore bullying others to seem tough and strong. Most bullies aren’t all the big, strong, mean ones we see on television. Bullies have a positive side apart to their negative choices. Most people don’t consider the bully’s feelings and reasons. Power has been and sometimes is today an obsession. Bullies gain the power over their victims when they bully them. But, most of the time, it isn’t because they want, but because they feel that they need it. Homes can cause weakness to roam through the children’s body, and therefore, starting an objective to gain some power in their world. By doing this, bullies are formed. In schools, they stress about peer pressure. This is a subject to stress because so many problems including drug addictions, over using alcohol, and last but not least, bullying. Some bullies are part of a gang, or they were part of one. Gangs are commonly known for being delinquents and criminals. Innocent people are being sucked into their bad ways. Gangs can give certain orders, or else you’ll be kicked out. One insult or bad choice can change a person’s life forever. Bullies do what they do to impress a person or group of people. Some people think that giving the person you want to impress an idea of a stronger you will do the job quite nicely. While that may work sometimes, most of the time, the bully only gets friends that agree with their actions, which is very little. Reasons for bullying actually make sense and they help you by giving you support that the bully isn’t always cruel.

Moving on, there are many ways that the bully can change his/her ways, if they’re up to it, which is not very common. One of the ideas that aren’t very common is to give the bully and the victim a chance to talk things out face-to-face. Most counselors or adults don’t consider that because the victim is likely to want to stay as far away from the bully as possible. But, this method, called Mediation is very effective when they agree to do it. The most important thing the bully can try doing is finding their problem. This can be difficult because the bully may think there is no problem with them. Well, most counselors say to not think of it as a problem, but a reason. But, when the bully finds their reason, the path for recovery is finally in reach. Recently, bullying has increased in school grounds. As a result, schools have been trying to make their students aware of this growing problem. Schools have a wide variety of adults to tell. Sadly, most don’t try to help. Schools actually help the bully by giving them discipline. By giving them discipline, they’re giving them notice that their behavior needs to change. There are so many good role models in schools that can help the people who want to change their ways. Also, schools allow free access to your friends. True friends would help the bully the whole time, wanting the best for them. Friends can be more powerful than most think. They allow you to do anything with a little pinch of fun. Bullies need that in their road to recovery. Now, some bullies may not be willing to change. It’s not because they love what they’re doing and absolutely enjoy the pleasure they get by hurting others most of the time. It’s because they’re afraid to ask. They may be afraid of being rejected, which will never happen. Or, it’s because they’re afraid of being judged by their ways. Because of their power, they may be disliked by many. They just need to know that if they want help and are willing to do the work for it, anybody will help them.

Last but not least, bystanders have an enormous role in bullying. Now, you may be saying that they don’t affect the victim and the bully at all. The fact is, you most certainly do. Think of a show with an audience and performers. If the audience doesn’t like the performers or the act, the performers won’t do the show or else lose money. Bystanders play a similar role. If the bully is not supported by his/her peers, there’s no point or satisfaction in bullying. As much as the bystanders have to stop the bully, they can also encourage the bully. If the audience loves the performance, they demand an encore. If the bystanders support the bully, they’re just helping it happen again and again. If the bully gets the satisfaction he wants, he won’t stop. Bystanders are very important in bullying. Some bystanders have job to take a stand for the victim. Sadly, most don’t take the job. The average bystander will just ignore the problem because it’s not theirs. Our society needs one to stand up to influence others. Also, adults can’t always be around for assistance. So, the bystanders have the job of reporting the incident. If just one bystander takes his/her duty, then others will follow in their footsteps. Bystanders can be the most important people in a bullying situation and need to take advantage of the power they are given, while most don’t.

To conclude, bullying is a serious problem all around the world. It has increased way too much from the past, going from a compliment in the Victorian Era to a terrible phrase. The effects of bullying are way more severe than most think, bullies’ reasons can make complete sense and must be taken care of, there is always a chance for the bully to get the help he/she needs, and finally, bystanders have the biggest job in a bullying scenario and need the courage to stand up today. Too many people suffer from bullying and have their lives ruined at an early age. There is no argument that bullying is a serious problem and must have the precautions it needs to end.



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