Saturday, March 20, 2010

Bullying Builds Youth Suicide Rates, NOT RESILIENCE!

The other day someone told my daughter that if she were at school and bullies gave her a hard time, it would build resilience. Is this common opinion the reason we don't actually put forward any real methods of dealing with bullying? Because it's making kids resilient? Does violence in the home make children resilient?

How often do you hear of someone who was so damaged by bullying that they attempt, or even succeed to commit suicide? And plenty of adults are in therapy because of bullying.

Why do we take bullying in the work place seriously enough to let the law deal with it, and yet many incidences of bullying in the playground, where children are forbidden to leave, are all but ignored.

I know from personal experience, from the experiences I had attempting to deal with bullying when my daughter was in prison, to the many many anecdotal stories I hear from individuals as well as media outlets, that schools are completely inept when it comes to dealing with violence. I also know - and would like to stress - that violence is not just physical, it can be emotional, financial, verbal and I'm sure there are other varieties of violence too. A child does not need to be punched to be a victim of violence - threatening behaviour, name calling, stealing (money or other property), online bullying and stalking, and all manner of other beastly acts are VIOLENT.

Perhaps we need to re frame bullying as VIOLENCE because the word bullying has come to diffuse the seriousness of this abuse, and the ramifications for victims are all too often a lifetime of pain - or suicide.


The Awesome 4 said...

Very good point. We tolerate violence because its just harmless bullying making our kids tougher? It does not make sense at all.

Alice and Mother said...

No, it's really sad. And the worst of bullying isn't reported anyway because - like adult criminals - bullies threaten worse treatment of their victims should they be reported for it!