For years bullying had been thought of as a necessary rite of passage to adulthood. But as has been proved with time, experience, and studies, bullying is a sociopathic evil that leaves a scar on the victim.
The beginning of this article lies in a Facebook feature I came across. The article on Facebook’s blog talked about how the social network was responding to the hue and cry over bullying (cyber-bullying or any other) by implementing a reporting feature. We do talk about the loopholes in Facebook’s security policies, but this proactive measure deserves a pat.
If bullying is a devil’s trait, then we as concerned citizens and parents can play protectors. Educating ourselves about how to recognize a serial bully and deal with him is a first step. Maybe these five websites can be important stops on that journey.
StopBullying.gov as the domain name indicates is a U.S. Governmental website under the offices of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. The very informative website covers the origins and signs of bullying, what cyberbullying is, who is at risk, and how you can prevent and react to bullying. This site also partners with other governmental agencies to bring the latest against this social evil. If things get out of hand, you can take the help of the lifeline phone number given on the site. The site is an essential read because it tells you all about warning signs and takes you through all the steps you need to take – from talking to reporting the incidences.
Parents can teach their kids all about bullying and its digital avatar – cyberbullying – through the series of child-friendly videos. There is also a search engine which teachers and parents can use for more resources like toolkits and training materials.
The UK specific website gives out advice and help to parents and the victimized in school. There’s a LiveOnline Support service that anyone can avail of to seek advice from an expert team. Hotline numbers, email, and Skype calls are also there as support tools. The site also has a section on workplace bullying. Parents can go through the case studies on the site to understand the patterns and also realize how bullying can be effectively tackled. A small forum is another spot where you can unload your fears.
Kids Against Bullying is a nice interactive site for children that teach kids the smart stuff to nip bullies and bullying in the bud. There are coloring games, word games, and others of its ilk. Videos, by and for kids, and a section where celebs speak about bullying is a must see. Amidst the fun, do stop at the Smart Stuff section which teaches the methods to spot and stop bullying. The site has been developed by Pacer’s National Bullying Prevention Center, another resource you can tap for information and tools against any push around.
Also check out Pacer’s Teens Against Bullying.
Patricia Barnes is a judge, licensed attorney, and legal writer who is a recognized expert on workplace abuse problems. Her blog is a mouthpiece against workplace abuse and bullying. Her writings also provide avenues for legal redressals in case an employee is harassed in the workplace. She talks about state, federal, and international laws that can combat this silent menace. You can check out the Self Help section of the blog for pointers to effective strategies to employ against workplace bullying (e.g. mediation).
During the course of my research for this article, I came across this site and its resource page which lists so many other links that can educate, inform, and hopefully protect someone you know against bullying. The site itself has its own set of content which is compactly summarized. Each bit of information leads you to more external resources.
The universal truth about bullying can be found in this quote – “When another person makes you suffer, it is because he suffers deeply within himself, and his suffering is spilling over. He does not need punishment; he needs help. That’s the message he is sending.” (by Thich Nhat Hanh)
But I like to believe in the quote by author Jim C. Hines – Bullying is not okay. Period.
Have you come across bullying of any kind? How have you tackled it?