Editor’s note: October is Bullying Prevention Awareness Month and Wrangler News wants to take the pulse of bullying that may exist in our area’s high schools. Have you been bullied? If yes, we’d like to hear what your school is doing about it. Please call our writer Andrew Lwowski at 480-966-0837 from 9-5 Monday-Friday. Leave a message if Andrew is not available; he’ll be in touch. We will not ask for or use your name in anything we publish. Remember: We’re on your side.
If you’ve ever dealt with someone making threats against you, been the subject of physical or verbal attacks, had rumors said behind your back, or been purposely excluded from a group, you know what it’s like to experience bullying. National Bullying Prevention Month has been set as a time to raise awareness and focus on prevention. Bullying is any unwanted and aggressive behavior that involves a power imbalance, whether real or perceived. It’s typically a repetitive behavior that takes place over a period of time.
Technology, notwithstanding its benefits, has also made bullying more widespread. Cyberbullying includes distributing mean or inappropriate emails or text messages and using social media to post rumors or embarrassing photos, videos, comments, and fake profiles. As a parent, if your child has been the victim of bullying and you’ve noticed a change in their mental health, or if your child or someone you love is struggling with depression or thinking about suicide, get help now.
The Suicide & Crisis Lifeline, or 988, is a free resource, available 24 hours a day for anyone in suicidal crisis or emotional distress. Call or text 988 or chat 988lifeline.org. For more information on ways to prevent, respond, or act against bullying, visit stopbullying.org, an initiative from the Department of Health and Human Services. Often, a young person will exhibit clear warning signs prior to an attempt. By knowing the warning signs and knowing how to help, you could save a life.
Goal of awareness is early prevention
Far too often in our country, young people take their lives because of bullying. According to an April 2023 post by the website What To Become:
• 46% of teens report experiencing cyberbullying at least once.
• 25% of LGBTQ+ students experienced bullying at school.
• 22% of students get bullied during the school year.
• At 79%, verbal harassment is the most common form of bullying at school.
• Name-calling is the most common form of child cyberbullying. October is National Bullying Prevention Awareness Month.
This campaign unites communities nationwide to educate and raise awareness of bullying prevention.