The Perils Of Bullying Essay

2468 words - 10 pages

“Sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me.” These words have been repeated countless times, but they are not accurate. In truth, words can kill. Bullying has become a highlighted problem within our society, and bullying in the school systems is even more prominent. According to the news, there are countless cases of bullying, many of which do not have happy endings. The rates of suicide due to bullying are currently higher than they have ever been before. Suicide is the third top causes of death in young people within the United States, averaging at 4,400 deaths a year, with over 50% of these deaths as a result of some sort of bullying. Studies also show that there are 100 suicide attempts for every one successful suicide performed (“Bullying and Suicide”). These numbers are disturbingly high. Bullying is affecting more kids in ways that some adults may never understand. The fact that words and actions can lead to cutting and suicides is still a distant concept to some and needs to be brought to immediate attention. Laws are now being put into place to prevent these tragedies, but what is really being done to prevent them within the schools or even within the students’ homes? There is a lot of finger pointing when it comes to this topic. But we all want to know what the cause is behind this nationwide crisis and who is responsible for it.

A bully can be defined in several ways and this term is sometimes exaggerated. However, according to the Miriam-Webster Dictionary, a bully is defined as “one habitually cruel to others who are weaker” and bullying is defined as “to cause (someone) to do something by making threats or insults or by using force”. These are the formal definitions of the term, but the definition used by the government organization, Stop Bullying, bullying is “unwanted, aggressive behavior among school aged children that involves real or perceived power imbalance. The behavior is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time.” (“Bullying Definition”) “School aged children” can be a broad term ranging anywhere from pre-school to one’s senior year of high school and with there being 3.2 million cases of bullying reported each year; this is highly plausible (“11 Facts About Bullying”). But the truth of the matter is that bullying does not simply involve school aged children. Adults are often victims of this crime as well. The work places, as well as the household, are common environments for this situation. An employee may be harassed on a daily basis by his or her boss, but is unable to afford quitting and cannot obtain another job. Therefore he or she is forced to endure this torment. Relationships within the home can also generate signs of bullying. Simple bickering can lead to verbal abuse and escalate to physical abuse.

Bullying can be categorized into three main groups; verbal, social, and physical bullying. Verbal bullying is “saying or writing mean things.” This includes name-calling,...

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