Bullying has been an epidemic for all ages. Several television shows and movies recently have been centered around bullying, for example, ‘13 Reasons Why’, ‘A Girl Like Her’, ‘Cyberbully’, and even ‘Mean Girls’. These movies and TV shows were produced to openly speak up about bullying and the harm that it causes to some people. Bullying is on the rise in majority of schools across the world. Parents, teachers, and other staff members are often not aware of all of the bullying that constantly goes on in their school. When it comes to bullying, there are a diverse number of categories that contribute to this situation. One type of bullying is homophobic bullying or gay bullying, which will be discussed in this essay.
Homophobic bullying or gay bullying is currently a massive issue, especially in the 21st century. Homophobic bullying occurs almost everywhere you go. Sometimes, this type of bullying is not even at school, it can occur at a job, on the street, or even at a restaurant. The more shocking factor is that it is not just high school students who gets bullied by this, it is elementary school aged kids as well. “In a classroom of twenty-eight, you could more than likely expect approximately three students to be of non-heterosexual sexual orientation All students are developing their understanding of sexualities as a concept and as part of their identity” (Van Leent, 13). Homophobic bullying starts when an individual uses a derogatory term towards another individual. Also, homophobic can also occur from a family member or best friend being homosexual. For example, students could bully another because one has two moms or two dads, or even a brother or sister that has become a part of the LGBT community.
Some people do not believe this, but gay bullying is a hundred times worse than normal bullying because some parents teach them that it is unjust and wrong. For some, it comes down to what their religion believes in. “Homophobic bullying is often motivated by prejudice against particular groups, for example, on grounds of religion, race, or sexual orientation. Students may be a target of homophobic bullying because of their appearance, behavior, or physical traits as well as friends or family who are LGBT or question their sexuality” (Orue, 95). Gay bullying is nothing compared to traditional bullying because members of the LGBT finally want to have a chance to really shine and be their true selves, but can’t because they are terrified of what others will think. That is one of the reasons why members of the LGBT take a longer amount of time to come out. Some are usually very afraid of being hurt, possibly even killed, or maybe some are just not fully ready.
The consequences of gay bullying are dire and long-lasting. Victims of this type of bullying have a higher chance of depression, alcohol or drug problems, and suicidal thoughts.
In my opinion, bullying is something that needs to end, and soon. People should be able to respect and love each other no matter what color their skin is, what they look like, who they like or how they dress. We must be loyal to sexual minorities and finally give them the opportunity to live a ‘normal’ life without fear of self-expression. We live in an era of drastic changes and one thing that honestly needs to be changed is the fact that love is love and that we should remain kind in any situation.
- Jung, Youn Ah. “What Makes Bullying Happen in School? Reviewing Contextual Characteristics Surrounding Individual and Intervention Programs on Bullying”. Ilkogretim Online, vol. 17, no. 1, Jan. 2018, pp. 1–6.
- Nazir, Tehseen, and Falak Nesheen. “Impact of School Bullying on Psychological Well-Being of Adolescents”. Indian Journal of Health & Well-being, vol. 6, no. 10, Oct. 2015, pp. 1037–1040.
- Orue, Izaskun, et al. “Homophobic Bullying in Schools: The Role of Homophobic Attitudes and Exposure to Homophobic Aggression”. School Psychology Review, vol. 47, no. 1, Mar. 2018, pp. 95–105.
- Perron, Tracy. “Looking at the Factors Associated with Bullying and Visits to the School Nurse, in the United States”. British Journal of School Nursing, vol. 10, no. 6, July 2015, pp. 288–295.
- Thwala, S’lungile Kindness. “Adolescent Girls’ Behavioral Characteristics and Their Vulnerability to Bullying in Manzini High Schools”. South African Journal of Education, vol. 38, Oct. 2018, pp. S1–S9.