Bullying can be described when individuals or groups seek to harm or intimidate someone who can be perceived as vulnerable. Bullying can happen at any time, whether at work, school or via digital platforms (cyber bullying). The constant factor of bullying in someone’s life can reduce their self-esteem, which can lead to mental health issues. Here are some key statistics surrounding bullying in the UK:
- 45% of young people experience bullying before 18
- 36% of young people, aged 8-22, worry about being bullied at school or university
- 83% of people say bullying has a negative effect on their self-esteem
- 10% of young people have attempted suicide after being bullied
- Those bullied, are twice as likely to have difficulty in staying in their job for long periods of time.
- 81% of adults have been bullied at their respective workplaces.
Bullying can affect any age group and have a negative outcome both short and long-term. Therefore, we recommend these tips to help overcome bullying.
- Know the signs
There are many behavioural changes that may occur if someone is being bullied. This can include anxiety, insomnia or sadness. Children may have torn clothing or missing belongings also. If you recognise any of these signs, it is recommended you speak to them, let them know you’re concerned and offer support.
- Combat homophobia
Homophobic slurs have been more prominent within school settings, with over a third of lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgendered (LGBT) teens being threatened in school due to their sexual orientation. Unfortunately, teens that face slurs regarding their sexual orientation are three times likely to commit suicide than their heterosexual counterparts.
- Recommend Out of School Activities
If school is the primary location where children are being bullied, out of school activities are a good way to provide an opportunity for children to meet new people and lower their anxiety levels. Music lessons, art classes or sports teams create an opportunity to make valuable friendships outside of school.
- Encourage them to speak out
Keeping things bottled up within can lead to mental health issues. Encouraging children, and adults, to speak out about any issues they may be experiencing provides them with an opportunity to take the weight of their shoulders. It also provides them with much needed encouragement and support to help them deal with any issues or problems they may be experiencing.
Bullying, even though you may not think, can be an underlying issue within families, from children being bullied in schools to abusive relationship. We would like to thank all social workers who provide a shoulder to lean on for children and families. Allowing them to open up and speak out about their problems helps them more than you may think. If you would like to make a difference to people’s lives as a social worker, please do not hesitate to contact us on 0203 897 1477 or 0161 509 1045 for a confidential chat about your current situation and let us help you find your ideal position.