Bullying has a far-reaching impact. It isn’t just the bullied who suffer, but also their families and those who witness bullying. It is important to be able to know what bullying can look like, what the effects bullying can have, and how to help prevent it.
Warning Signs of Bullying
The Impact of Bullying
According to stopbullying.gov, children who are victims off bullying can experience:
- Depression, anxiety, and suicidal ideation,
- Increased feelings of sadness and loneliness,
- Changes in sleep and eating patterns,
- Loss of interest in activities they used to enjoy,
- Health complaints, and
- Decreased academic achievement and participation.
These are impacts that last into adulthood, without support and intervention.
Bystanders, or witnesses, to acts of bullying are at risk of:
- Increased use of tobacco, alcohol, and drugs,
- Increased mental health problems, including depression and anxiety, and
- Missing or skipping school.
How to Prevent Bullying
When it comes to preventing bullying, communication and awareness are key. Helping kids to understand that bullying is not okay, how it can leave a lasting impact, and what they can do to get help make a big difference. Simple steps such as regularly checking in with your children, encouraging them to partake in their special interests, and modelling respect and kindness, can potentially protect children from bullying. Should you be concerned that bullying is occurring, make sure that your child already knows trusted adults they can speak to. You can also help your kids know how to stand up to a bully, including being assertive to say “stop”, walking away, and using humor. Discuss safety, including reporting bullying to school staff and law enforcement, or seeking a protection order against their bully.
It is undeniable that bullying can take a toll on an expanding web of people if left unchecked. Through kindness, respect, education, and support, that toll can potentially be minimized or even eliminated. It is a community effort, and AVRC is available to help! If you or someone you care about is experiencing bullying, don’t hesitate to reach out, because AVRC staff is available 24/7.
415 Colorado Avenue, La Junta, CO 81050
TTY: (719) 384-1938
After Hours Colorado Relay dial 711 or 1-800-659-2656
Information about the effects and prevention of bullying provided by stopbullying.gov.