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Bullying reaches epidemic proportions as more young people cry out for help

Take action, don’t be an observer

Merdies Hayes Editor In Chief | 12/14/2017, midnight
By now, millions of people around the world have likely seen the heartbreaking..

From the vantage point of adulthood, bullying is simply mean-spirited and pointless, but is traditionally considered a regular part of childhood. This is where concerned adults are sometimes confused or misunderstand what a bullied child is trying to convey because the behavior is repeated each day. The victim sometimes views the bully as someone with more power in the situation, especially if the perpetrator is older, bigger, stronger or has a “clique” of students who support his/her behavior. Realizing that the victim has no real power to stop the torment, the bully will continue his/her behavior which causes daily aggravation upon the victim.

‘An attempt to instill fear’

“Bullying is an attempt to instill fear and self loathing,” said Dr. Mark Dombeck of the American Academy of Experts in Traumatic Stress. “Being the repetitive target of bullying damages your ability to view yourself as a desirable, capable and effective individual.”

In terms of “when in life” bullying occurs, this tends to change as children age, according to a 2013 report from the Child Trends DataBank. They found that physical aggression starts out higher among students and decreases consistently, with 18 percent of children aged 2 to 5 years reporting some experience with physical aggression, but only 10 percent of teens aged 14 to 17 years reporting it. Cyberbullying, conversely, tends social media harassment. This scenario reportedly rises to 14 percent for those bullied youth 14 to 17 years old.

Researchers contend that is practically impossible to predict who will get bullied based on their age, sex, race, class, sexual orientation or national origin because none of these categories (nor any combination of traits) can guarantee that a child will or not be bullied. However, those who do get bullied may exhibit some common characteristics.