Psychological Effects Of Bullying In Schools

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Bullying is an extremely prevalent issue cross-culturally that takes many forms, including verbally, physically, socially, and over the computer, known as cyberbullying. Bullies use intimidation to control others. The climate of American schools is a breeding ground for bullying as students strive to establish social power over other students. Exposure to family violence can also be an influence in the development of a bully. While anti-bullying policies are in place at most schools, they are rarely enforced and do not take the complexity of bullying behavior into consideration. Students that harass others are often dealing with mental health issues that are unaddressed and would greatly benefit from therapeutic intervention. Bullying, both…show more content…
Unbeknownst to the child, they may begin to model their behavior in relationships outside the home, after what they have learned in the home (Low & Espelage, 2013). Children who are physically punished or witness physical punishment of their parent often establish pro-aggression norms, and are more likely to become bully perpetrators in school settings (Spriggs, Iannotti, Nansel, & Haynie, 2007). Physical violence is not the only type of abuse that contributes to a child’s chance of becoming a bully, but also psychological abuse (Ferguson, Miguel, & Hartley, 2009). It has also been found that in homes with family violence, there are lower levels of parental monitoring and empathy, both of which have been linked to higher likelihood of engaging in bullying behavior at school (Low & Espelage, 2013). The experience of violence in the home, lack of parental guidance and warmth in addition to the desire for high social establishment amongst peers, all contributes to a student developing a bullying…show more content…
Becoming a bully, or a bullying victim, is not limited to one gender, sexual orientation, class, race/ethnicity, or spiritual orientation. As mentioned before, bullies are driven by the need to establish power over their peers. However, this power differential is often perceived by the bully in their choice to harass other students that are marginalized by society within the United States. According to Rivers and Duncan (2013), women, individuals identifying as LGBTQ, those who are mentally or physically disabled, multicultural individuals, and those with diverse spiritual orientations are more likely to be bullied. Recently, researchers have begun studying the many sub-types of bullying including racist, disablist, sexist, and relational forms of aggression that were previously only examined in the generic studies of bullying (Rivers & Duncan, 2013). It is important to study the subtypes of bullying affecting minority populations as these forms of aggression are deeply damaging and are not just evident in schools, but also in the workplace and society
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