Adolescents across the region experience bullying both online and at school.
There are four main types of bullying: verbal bullying, social and emotional bullying, physical bullying, and cyberbullying.
- Verbal bullying includes saying or writing mean things about someone.
- Social and emotional bullying involves hurting someone’s reputation or causing humiliation.
- Physical bullying involves hurting a person or damaging his or her possessions.
- Cyberbullying, which is a new form of bullying, involves verbal, social, and emotional bullying electronically through an email, a text, or a social networking site.
Bullying can happen to anyone, anywhere. Typically, children at risk of being bulled are perceived as weak or different from their peers; are depressed or have low self-esteem; and have few friends. Children who tend to bully others like to dominate over their peers; are aggressive; and have less parental involvement.
There are important consequences to bullying and cyberbullying. Victims of bullying and bullies alike can experience depression and anxiety, a change in eating habits, lower academic achievement, substance abuse, and school absenteeism.
Families, schools, and the community can get involved to help reduce bullying. Parents and schools can build a safe environment to allow for open communication. Schools and communities can educate the public about bullying, and adopt policies that deter kids from engaging in the behavior. Communities can get involved by encouraging partnerships between businesses and target those most affected.
Did you know?
- Bullying continues to be a problem in Rhode Island. More than 18% of high school students in the state have been bullied on school property, and 40% of middle school students have been bullied on school property. (RI YRBS, 2013)
- Cyber bullying presents a new challenge in the effort to stop bullying, as 14% of high school students in Rhode Island have been bullied electronically and 23% of Rhode Island middle school students have been bullied electronically. (RI YRBS, 2013)
- There are consequences to bullying, for the children who are bullied, children who bully others, and witnesses to bullying. Consequences could include changes in mental health, substance use, and suicide. (Stop Bullying)