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Why is bullying an age-old problem?

Updated on Feb 11, 2009

Bullying is one of the most traumatic aspects of childhood. It also happens to be one of the oldest. This is due to several reasons:

  • Children are afraid of retribution and consequences. Often adults do not handle bullying situations in a manner that maintains the trust and respect of the victim. Adults must assure the victim and follow through until the bullying stops.1
  • Bystanders seldom intervene. To combat bullying, both parent/adult and child witnesses need to intervene.2
  • Adults are not always present. Most bullying happens when adults are not present. Adult presence at school recess for example, school aids and parent volunteers could make a huge difference.3
  • Adults don't always provide positive models of authority and may act aggressively themselves. Bullying is difficult to eradicate in schools and in modern culture because it is so often effectively used by both children and adults.4 Adults should avoid aggressive, intimidating, and abusive behaviors, and instead model the social and emotional behaviors that they would like to see reflected by our youth.1

References:

  1. Linda A. Cedeno, Maurice J. Elias. How Do You Know When Your Student Or Child Is Being Victimized and How Can You Help?
  2. Christina Salmivalli. Bullying is a Group Phenomenon − What Does It Mean And Why Does It Matter?
  3. Stop Bullying Now! U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Best Practices in Bullying Prevention and Intervention.
  4. Thomas W. Farmer, Cristin M. Hall. Bullying in School: An Exploration of Peer Group Dynamics.

 

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