By: Allison Collins
“Back to School” season can be exciting for some. It brings the opportunity of meeting new friends, trying new classes, ect. For others, it can be the start of another year of bullying. Bullying affects many students, in fact, 1 in 5 students aged 12-18 are/ have been bullied in the past school year.
Bullying comes in many different forms. One of the more common forms of bullying comes from verbal bullying. Verbal bullying can range from gossiping about the person, talking badly about them to their peers, to making up rumors. Actions like those cause students to feel uncomfortable in their school environment and can lead to them not wanting to come to school.
Not only can it affect the student’s education & school performance it can affect their mental health. People who experience bullying have a higher chance of experiencing things like depression & anxiety. Some of these symptoms can last up to 40 years after the original bullying took place.
One might pose the question: what causes someone to turn into a bully? Most of the time, the bully themselves is experiencing some type of negativity. Internally, they may struggle with issues like lack of self-esteem, wanting to have control of others, or they themselves feel outcasted. Externally, the bully is getting either bullied at home or someplace else. In fact, bullies are nearly twice as likely to experience depression and anxiety themselves.
So, how do you stop the cycle? How can you help? Encourage healthy social skills. Teach kids to be nice to one another. Even if someone isn’t being nice to you, you never know what that person can be going through privately. This school year, the student council partnered with the “Dude. Be Nice” project. This project’s mission is to get people to treat themselves and others. You can stop by the PHS Library and order your own “Dude. Be Nice” t-shirt to support the cause!