Here is some information we shared at the first session of our Bullying Education Series.
Students who are being bullied often exhibit some warning signs. These students may:
* Have torn, damaged or missing pieces of clothing, books, or other belongings.
* Have unexplained cuts, bruises and other scratches from fighting.
* Have few, if any, friends with whom he or she spends time.
* Seem afraid of going to school, walking to and from school, riding the school bus, or taking part in organized activities (such as clubs or sports) with peers.
* Take a long, “illogical” route when walking to or from school.
* Lose interest in doing school work, or suddenly begin to do poorly in school.
* Appear sad, moody, teary or depressed when he or she comes home.
* Complain frequently of headaches, stomachaches, or other physical problems.
* Have frequent bad dreams or trouble sleeping.
* Experience a loss of appetite.
* Appear anxious and suffer from low self-esteem.
It’s also important to recognize the characteristics of students who bully, which may help prevent bullying and allow for early intervention. These students may:
* Have a positive attitude toward violence and the use of violent means.
* Have a strong need to dominate and subdue other students and get their own way.
* Be impulsive, aggressive or easily angered.
* Lack empathy toward students who are bullied.
* Have defiance and aggression toward adults, including teachers and parents.
* Be involved in other anti-social or rule-breaking activities such as vandalism, delinquency, and substance abuse.
* Have greater physical strength than that of others in general and the students they bully in particular (especially in boys).
* Be more likely to report owning a gun for risky reasons, such as to gain respect or to frighten others.