Once upon a time bullying use to just be name calling or shoving in the schoolyard. Home provided a safe haven to hide. However a new complication has arisen in the somewhat twisted tale of life, technology. A tool which was said to enhance or make life easier is functioning to do the exact opposite. With improvements in technology, the increasing number of youths with mobile phones and the rise in popularity of social networking sites the issue ofbullying has transcended the boundaries of any physical zone and has become a twenty four hour a day global means of harassment. Even more alarming is the deadly effects of this and the impact it has on everyone in the victims life.
This post was inspired by an episode of 48 hours titled Bullying: Words can kill which documented the lives of children and teenagers who had been the victims of bullying as well as those who had been victims and saw suicide as the only way to end the trauma. It was one of those stories that had you in awe the entire time. Why? continually sprang to my mind. What did such treatment achieve? What was the point?
How could these children, because in many cases lets face it that’s what they were, be so cruel to another? Being told by another person that they were nothing, no one cared about them and that they should go hang themselves. Wow! Unbelievable! Adding to this were mechanisms such as Facebook, with Facebook the abuse was not limited to face to face contact during school hours. The bullies were now in your school, your computer, your phone and any other form of contact which was available.
I was truly shocked by this documentary and as someone who has experienced bullying it is a horrible feeling made even worse by the lack of escape from the perpetrators. However the biggest tragedy is how many lives were lost and continue to be lost as a result of the immaturity and negativity some believe they can express towards others.
So to those who are currently experiencing this people do care and you’re stronger than you think. It is easy for someone to point out another persons flaws or talk negatively about them it takes a genuine strong individual to, despite that, not act in the same way. They may have the bigger mouth but you’re the bigger person.
This is not to say you should remain silent. While you may feel alone and like things will never improve talking to someone could ease this burden. It can be a doctor, a friend, a parent, anyone! Documentaries like this highlight the true rareity of life and its importance. It shows how something as simple as a few hurtful words can seem bigger than life itself.
Lifeline 13 11 44 (24hr crisis line)
Kids Helpline 1800 55 1800