I’m always grateful when readers share their experiences with me, it starts a conversation on bullying and prompts further reflection.
I’d like to share two such responses to my post, Bullying & Beyond… 10.Painting the pain, part three.
Paula at Paula Light https://wordpress.com/read/feeds/74951
bravely said “I was bullied for being fat and nerdy and bad at sports. Thank God I could get away from the kids outside of school and escape into books and tv shows. I also found my own hobbies, such as needlepoint. But today, with social media, there’s no escape. That’s the worst ~ I can’t imagine the horror of never escaping the peer group.”
Parikhit Dutta at Weeping Pines https://wordpress.com/read/feeds/56154764
responded with empathy saying…
“I’m so glad for you Paula. It can be so frustrating to live the pains of bullying always, never being able to escape. And isn’t it a silent killer”.
My thanks to both Paula and Parikhit for prompting this post.
I can, from experience, confirm that bullying via social media is as noxious as poison gas, it is a silent killer!
One Christmas while we were enjoying a family gathering our daughter was suffering in silence in the midst of us, as bullies targeted her with vile and upsetting messages on social media. We were oblivious to this happening until our daughter could no longer contain her distress and broke down telling us. Even after the girls in question were reprimanded and made close their social media accounts, the bullying continued because they were able to create new accounts using fake identification.
Social media enables bullies to infiltrate the victim’s home; often the only safe space victims have. Online bullying is omnipresent, affecting children, adults and even Politicians, as we’ve seen during the United Kingdom’s Brexit attempts.
When bullying is frequent and continues over a protracted period it can cripple the victim leaving them distressed and confused. The implications can be life long, leaving them with low confidence and self-esteem, and can cause them intense dislike of themselves for being too fat, too thin, nerdy, shy or a miriad of other perfectly normal human characteristics just because a bully decided these traits were “unacceptable”.
Other sign of distress can include mood swings, anxiety, depression, insomnia, panic attacks, eating disorders, OCD, and finally but not exhaustively, self-harm until another innocent, tormented life could be lost to bullying.
Having witnessed the effect of online bullying I’d like to highlight to parents the distress children feel at, the horror of never escaping from this silent killer.” I’d also like to stress the lasting impact of bullying and encourage parents, adults & society to be vigilant.
Have you or your children been bullied? Did you/they experience “the horror of never escaping the peer group” because of the pervasiveness of social media? Did you watch this silent killer in action?
Mindfully Marie xx