Teens are being bullied every day not just in school but online. Bullies like cyberbullies often try to pick on people who seem weak or remind them of something they can never have. They sometimes pick on them to look cool in front of their friends or because they see others like family members doing it so they think it’s the right thing to do. In a study, it was proven that “… hypothesis for explaining bullying behavior is that young people engage in this behavior as a result of being influenced by their families.”(Courtney Wilton and Marilyn Campbell, 2011). Many people often believe that bullies/cyberbullies pick on people because their home life is terrible. They might also be victims of some sort of abuse whether it is verbal or physical. Does this study show that victims from cyberbullying become depressed or get affected in some way but are the bullies themselves going through some mental health issues? In this essay, we are not only going to figure out what’s going on with the victims but see the reasons why bullies bully peers. Teens bullied at school are most likely cyberbullied by them too. Being cyberbullied and bullied at school affects the victims more than just being bullied at school. Being cyberbullied and bullied at school might affect the victim’s mental health.
Bullying in schools
Adolescents are often bullied in school, a place where everyone should feel safe. Most of the teens bullied will suffer from mental health problems. And many will even try to kill themselves because they start believing they are worthless or can no longer deal with the constant bullying. Stopping a bully on-campus might be a little more complicated because the victim might feel scared that the bullying would get worse if they tell someone. Seeing the bully every day makes it worse because they can get beaten up before, during, or after school. Usually, many teens experience bullying the most during lunch rather than before or after school. In 2019, 38.7% of teen girls and 34.1% of teen boys confirmed they have been bullied for a long period of time.
Reasons why peers bully other peers
A study shows that people with trauma, stress, poor home life, were bullied, relationship problems, low self-esteem, and aggression are likely to bully others. Teens often take all their anger out on someone that is weaker than them and won’t stand up to them. They figure out that others should go through what they are going through. Instead of talking out their problems such as their parent’s divorce, they bully someone to make themselves feel better. When they feel small or their self-esteem is really low they think making fun of someone smaller than them or that appears to have lower self-esteem than them will raise theirs up and make them feel big like they rule the world. People often don’t know how to control their anger or aggression so they let it out on people that they think is the problem instead of talking it out or taking it out in a sport. Since they don’t want their peers to view them as weak they bully someone to appear strong and in control. A research that was done in 2019, 13.4% of teen girls along with 16.1% of teen boys said that they bullied others (lifetime).
Many teenagers are being cyberbullied on social media or any online site. In fact, in 2018 60% of teen girls and 59% of teen boys received some kind of cyberbullying. When teens post a picture on any of there accounts they might get a negative comment such as “what a whore” or they might get rude messages from their bullies. Being cyberbullied means that there is someone at the other end of your computer who is harassing you. In this case, it doesn’t mean you are getting beat up by the bully but having someone trash talk you, making you feel worthless. It may have the same effect on the victim as it would for the victim that has their bully or bullies in front of them verbally abusing them because what they say still gets to you. Sure with cyberbullying, you can block them getting you rid of the problem but bullies would still find a way to bully them on social media or even text them with different numbers. In some cases, the victims and bullies will be the same for in-person bullying and cyberbullying, while in other cases it might change for either the victim or bully. In fact, “21% of [pre-teens] have received mean or threatening e-mails or other messages.” and a little bit more than half haven’t told their parents or guardians that they were victims of cyberbullying.
How to stop cyberbullying/ in-person bullying
People can’t stop cyberbullying by blocking the bully from their account and basically, you can announce it to Instagram, Snapchat, Facebook, etc. and they would either take their page down or give them a warning without saying who accused them. Some social media, like Facebook, even take down offensive comments or posts without question, if it’s actually mean or not. Schools do bullying awareness and sometimes they also do it for cyberbullying. I believe that a social solution for this is to inform people about it and let them know they are not alone so they can feel more comfortable telling someone. Also, if someone sees people posting rude stuff about someone on social media to immediately report it. When someone other than the victim speaks up bullies are more likely to stop.
If people block bullies, bullies will continue to bully and harass them by saying stuff such as “they blocked me because they’re scary cats,” and continue to say mean stuff to their faces or behind their backs. Blocking a bully on social media does not necessarily mean they will stop bullying you if you attend the same school as the bully. Sometimes bullies threaten the victims so that they won’t tell an adult about it. Teens might not always be willing to ask for help therefore it will keep going. Some people aren’t aware of it happing so when people come for help they brush it off instead of helping them.
Mental health problems of being both cyberbullied and bullied
Cyberbullying can cause depression, anxiety, suicidal thought, and adolescents to distant themselves from loved ones. It makes you feel anxious every time you get a notification on your phone because it might be a bully. “past studies have shown that pictures/video images were the most harmful to adolescents,” rather than comments on social media or texts sent by their bullies. Sometimes because they distance themselves from their family and friends makes them feel more lonely and depressed because they have no one to talk to about what’s going on. For bullying just like cyberbullying, teens can get depression and anxiety. They can become suicidal, starts having nightmares, and start to feel the need to be distant. Some might cut themselves because they let whatever the bully said into their head. They start to think that it’s their fault they are being bullied and don’t know how to express what they’re feeling to an adult so they take it out on themselves.