Bullies do not fit into a neat little box. They come from all
walks of lives, all ages, all genders, all races, and all cultures.According to
Dr. Cerullo, bullies are very often people who have been bullied or abused
themselves. Sometimes they are experiencing life situations they cannot cope
with, that leave them feeling helpless and out of control. Many times, a bully
does not feel that they can find any other means of fitting in or carving out
their own niche in life so they turn to being powerful in a way that they feel
brings them respect. They feel that being feared is the way to gain respect and
surround themselves with friends and people who look up to them. However, what
they do not realize is that people are “friends” with them so they do not become
a target of their bullying. It all comes down to fear. Another possibility of
the reason being the bullying attitude is that they bully themselves feels that
they have no control in their lives. Maybe their home life is out of control and
they are not listened to or valued by their family. In order to compensate for
the lack of value at home the bully finds it in other places in inappropriate
and unhealthy ways. Even though these are all valid explanations sometimes the
only explanation is that the bully is a mean and cruel person who only feels
good when they can cause others harm. These types feel no remorse and rarely
stop bullying. This may be a pattern for their entire lives. The above mentioned
facts on bullies have been widely accepted for many years, but new research
proposes that bullying is something entirely different to some people.” Dr.
Cerullo used to believe that bullies have low self-esteem, and put down other
people to feel better about themselves. While many bullies are themselves
bullied at home or at school, new research shows that most bullies actually have
excellent self-esteem. Bullies usually have a sense of entitlement and
superiority over others, and lack compassion, impulse control and social skills.
(Teachantibullying.com)
Though there are different reasons behind the behavior of bullying, most
bullies have certain things in common. Bullies behave in a dominant manner and
cast blame for the bad things in their lives upon others. Though bullying is a
learned behavior, genetics can play a part. For instance, some people are more
predisposed to violence and aggression. However, not all people with these
tendencies become bullies. Some are able to find ways to take out their
aggression and anger in more manageable and healthy ways. It can be a simple
matter of nature versus nurture. Another commonality in bullies is that they are
attention seekers. Though the attention they receive is negative they still
crave it as often it is the only attention that they receive.The people in the bully’s life that also have an effect on their behavior. On
one side, the bully may have a family who does not care about the bully’s
behavior and may even encourage it because they are the same way towards people.
On the other hand, the bully’s parents may also be fearful of the bully and feel
afraid to stand up to them and show them how to change their behavior. If the
parents are fearful of doling out discipline to the bully then the bully learns
that they can get away with their behavior since their own parents cannot even
stop their behavior. When there is discipline from the parents it is usually not
consistent. If his or her parents are in a good mood, the child gets away with
bad behavior. If the same parent is under stress, he or she will take it out in
angry outbursts against the child. This child never internalizes rules of
conduct or respect for authority.Who are the Victims of the bully? Though anyone can become the target of a bully, there are some commonalties
between those who fall victim to bullying as bullies tend to choose a certain
type of person to abuse. There are many reasons how and why bullies target
others, and the reasons are consistent between cases. People who are victims of
bullying find themselves being bullied due to their achievements, do not have a
large circle of friends, subjected to unwarranted teasing and rumors, and tend
to be more serious about important things in life such as school or work. Most
people who are targets of bullies have something different about them. Maybe
they wear thick glasses, dress differently, or are painfully shy. Many are
awkward in social situations and try not to draw attention to themselves.
Targets of bullies often have little or no friends who can stick up for them
(which is one reason that they bully feels that they can abuse them.)and already
have low self-esteem. Bullies also target those who appear to be vulnerable and
the main theory is that they do this so that there is little chance the person
will stand up for themselves, making them easy to abuse. When bullied, they
become visibly frightened, cry, or do not have an appropriate response. That is
just what the child who bullies wants; it becomes an invitation to even more
bullying.Effects of Bullying on the Victim:

Bullying can, and often does, have lasting lifelong effect on the victim.
Being bullied effects the victims self esteem which are even more significant
when the victim already has had self esteem issues. Many victims need counseling
to come to grips with the bullying and to help rebuild their lives as bullying
can lead to depression, panic attacks, and physical ailments such as ulcers.
Children who are bullied often suffer academically due to the fact that they
fear going to school where the source of their stress resides. Some children are
so affected by bullying that they choose not to further their education due to
fear of having to face bullying in other atmospheres such as college. Many
people who are bullied are so hurt by the cruel treatment that they contemplate
suicide and some actually attempt and succeed in taking their own lives. “There
is often no end to bullying for victims. Devastating effects of bullying is the
pattern it creates in victims’ minds and personalities that can last their whole
life.”(Department of Health ond Human Services, 2010). It is common for children
who are bullied to be the victim of bullying in their adult lives as well since
their self esteem has been so devalued and they cannot seem to find the courage
to stop being a victim.

Another serious issue for the victims of bullying is that the friends that
they do have turn their back on the victim because they are afraid of being the
outcast or the target. This further alienates the victim from their normal
world. Also, for some victims, being bullied is a whole other learning
experience. Sometimes the victim, out of anger and lack of control of their own
lives, seek out someone who is weaker than they are and target them; hence the
victim turns into the bully. These are all serious effects that can truly change
the victim’s life and outlook on the future. This is why that in all bullying
cases, it is imperative that parents, teachers, and school officials speak to
the children immediatly about their bullying incident. Also, children should not
be afraid to speak out against bullying, so that the incident can be addressed
accordingly. This can be done, by making children feel safe and fear from
retribution.

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