In 2013, eight-year-old Ryan Suffern wrote a letter to Santa asking him to make the kids at school stop bullying his sister Amber.
Ryan wrote in his letter to Santa “The kids at school are still picking on Amber and it’s not fair because she doesn’t do anything to them, and it makes me mad”.
Sadly, this is the reality of bullying. Bullies target individuals who they think are defenceless or weak. Bullying can happen to anyone, children and adults. It can occur in many contexts, including the workplace, home or school.
So what exactly is bullying? Bullying is the behaviour of intentionally hurting someone on one or more occasions. It can include social, physical, verbal and cyber bullying.
- Social – excluding others, gossiping and talking behind someone’s back.
- Physical – tripping, stealing, hitting, breaking someone’s things, and pushing or punching.
- Verbal – threats, hurtful comments, teasing and name calling.
- Cyber – mean text messages and emails, prank calls, and rude comments on social networking websites.
When bullying occurs it can leave victims feeling vulnerable and afraid. Being a victim of bullying can leave us with lifelong scars, and it can have a big effect on our self-esteem and wellbeing. It can lead to fear, depression, low self-esteem, social withdrawal, anxiety, and in extreme cases suicide. It can also lead us to seek some sort of revenge.
Telling someone you are a victim of bullying is so important for your wellbeing, and it can be a very difficult thing to do. This might be because you feel scared about what will happen if you do. You might even think that being bullied is your fault. It is important to remember that it is never okay to be bullied and that nobody deserves it.
By talking to a trained Clinical Psychologist you can learn more about how to overcome bullying and get the help you need.
Let’s Stop Bullying together. Stand Up, and Speak Out.
At Life & Mind Psychology we are here to help you. Call us on (02) 9525 8443.