Research has revealed that bullying has a lasting effect on victims that are either being bullied or had been bullied in the past. These findings conclude that not only does bullying affect the current psychological health of the victim, it also has a lasting detrimental effect on it.
Everyone has at one point or the other come across bullying. If not bullied themselves then they have either seen someone else going through it or heard about it. Bullying is not just limited to being physical but can also be emotional. Individuals that are forced to face it fall into deep depression and anxiety and often seclude themselves from everyone else. For this reason many find it difficult to open up and express themselves ultimately finding comfort in solitude instead of company.Bullying not only reflects on the social behavior of the victims but also adversely effects their academic performance. Students who are bullied in school show a drop in academic achievement such as dropping grades and are more likely to drop out or skip school entirely. Victims are not only at risk during the period in which they are bullied, but lasting effects also put expose them to the long term effects of bullying.
A survey was carried out among 4,297 students in grades five, seven and ten. According to the survey approximately one-third of the students selected had been bullied at one point or the other. These students were divided into four categories. Students who had been bullied in the past, students being bullied in the present, students bullied in the past as well as being bullied in the present and students who has never been bullied. Students were then given a test to evaluate their mental and physical health and performance. Results revealed that students who had been bullied in the past scored better than students who were being bullied in the present. Students who had been bullied throughout had the worst scored of all the categories.
The survey also revealed that even though students who were no longer bullied scored better than students being bullied, their score was still not the same as those who had never been bullied at all. The test also did reveal that some students who had never been bullied did show signs of poor physical and mental health. This prompted Laura Bogart, a scientific researcher at Boston Children’s hospital, to state that bullying is not the only factor affecting the physical and mental health of students but it quite possibly is the biggest. According to Bogart the longing bullying persists the greater the damage it will have. Parents and guardians should look out for signs or changes in attitude or behavior and should confront their kids immediately.
Bullying has been attributed to many problems that individuals face today. Prolonged exposure to it traumatizes the victims often permanently scarring them for life. Absence of immediate intervention would result in the lasting effects of bullying taking its toll where the victim would no longer be able to handle the pressure and simply, give up!
By Hammad Ali