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Anti-Bullying National Awareness Month | Educate Yourself & Others

By Martie Hevia | Blue Beach Song™

October is Anti-Bullying National Awareness Month and I thought I would take my little platform, this blog, to share some great resources, videos, websites and information that might help you educate yourself or others on this extremely important issue.

Who Gets Bullied?

Bullying takes on as many forms as there are people who are different.

  • Bullies don’t care if you are black, white, red, brown or purple.
  • Bully’s don’t care if you are gay or straight or bisexual.
  • Bullies don’t care if you are skinny or fat or somewhere in between.
  • Bullies don’t care if you are a girl or a boy, a man or a woman.
  • Bullies don’t care if you are at school, at work, or at home.
  • Bullies don’t care if you are rich or poor or middle class.
  • Bullies don’t care if you have blond hair and blue eyes, or brown hair and brown eyes.
  • Bullies don’t care if you are beautiful, talented, kind, vulnerable, sick, smart or not.

In truth, bullies don’t care who you are and who you are is not why they bully you; they bully you because of who they are.

Bullies are equal-opportunity abusers. And they won’t stop until you stand up to them and stand up for others.

Bul-ly, noun \ˈbu̇-lē\ – (1) archaic: sweetheart; fine chap; (2) modern: a blustering, quarrelsome, overbearing person who habitually badgers and intimidates smaller or weaker people. [Sources: Merriam-Webster and]

Types of Bullying

We generally tend to think of bullying as coming in two varieties, physical and verbal, but from there we can tease out a few more. There are six types of bullying currently identified as having their own unique characteristics:

  • Emotional – Emotional bullying involves primarily gossiping or spreading rumors and is more common in girls.
  • Physical – Physical bullying involves inflicting physical harm or touching the victim and is traditionally more common in boys.
  • Verbal – Verbal bullying involves directly calling the victim names, insulting them, or laughing at them.

  • A Thin Line: Cyberbullying

  • Cyber – Cyber-bullying is a more recent phenomenon involving the use of technology and the Internet to post hurtful images or threats online, be it via email, social media, texting, etc.
  • Racist – Racist bullying involves using racial or ethnic slurs to make fun of someone’s culture, race, or ethnic heritage.

  • Anti-Bullying of LGBT Teens

  • Sexual – Sexual bullying can be carried out through sexual harassment, or teasing the victim about sexual parts or sexual orientation.
  • Why Do Kids Bully?

    There are probably about as many reasons for bullying as there are bullies themselves, but there are a few factors that come up frequently when trying to answer the question as to why kids bully:

  • Uninvolved Parents – Bullies may not receive love or warmth from their parents or they may be lacking rules at home with consequences for their behavior.
  • Family Aggression – Bullies may be beaten up by older siblings or parents, and they may copy that behavior at school or take out their anger on others.
  • Peers Who Bully – Bullies learn it from peers who bully and they do it to feel more important.
  • Friends of a Feather – Bullies are friends with other bullies, encouraging each other’s bad behavior and gaining empowerment from those friendships.

  • Words Hurt

  • Lack of School Rules – Bullies are more likely found in schools with unenforced anti-bullying policies.
  • Poor Supervision in Schools – Bullies are more likely to bully in unsupervised classrooms, hallways, cafeterias, and recess areas.
  • Social Aggression – Emotional bullies (those who gossip and spread rumors) do it to gain attention or to feel better about themselves.
  • Role-Models in the Media – Bullies often mimic the aggressive behavior or bullying they see on television, movies, and video games.
  • Myths About Bullies & Victims

    Society has certain perceptions about bullies and their victims, often perpetuated on television and in movies. These perceptions are often myths, unsupported by the data. Here are a few:

  • Bullies Have No Friends – they are often quite popular, admired and emulated by their classmates.
  • Bullies Have Low Self-Esteem – they often have inflated self-views that rationalize their antisocial actions.
  • Being a Victim/Fighting Back Builds Character – passive and socially withdrawn children are at a greater risk of getting bullied and more likely to withdraw further.
  • Childhood Victims Become Violent as Teens – most victims of bullying are more likely to suffer in silence than to retaliate.
  • Victims Are Introverts – Although it is true that introverts are more likely to suffer at the hands of bullies, there are many situational factors that can also make a non-introvert the target of a bully attack, like being a new student at school.
  • Bullying Involves Only Two People – There is usually more than two people involved in a bullying incident. Besides the bully and the victim, there are usually always bystanders, and/or those who help the bully, and/or those who defend the victim.
  • Only Kids Get Bullied – As we shall explore below, adults get bullied as well.
  • Adults Get Bullied, Too

    Some people think that kids and teenagers are the exclusive targets of bullies, but adults get bullied, as well, sometimes at home, but more often at work. Whether it’s your supervisor or colleague or customer, there are ways to deal with adult bullies. If you need some resources, check the Workplace Bullying Institute website and help raise awareness during the third week in October, which is Freedom from Workplace Bullies Week, after all, everyone deserves a safe, healthy workplace.

      Freedom from Workplace Bullies

      Bullying is a systematic campaign of interpersonal destruction that jeopardizes your health, your career, the job you once loved. Bullying is a non-physical, non-homicidal form of violence. Because it is abusive it causes both emotional and stress-related physical harm. Freedom from Bullies Week is a chance to break through the shame and silence surrounding bullying. It is a week to be daring and bold. The power of workplace bullying is its ability to stay hidden in plain view. Make every workplace safe and take a stand against workplace bullying! [Source URL:

    Local CBS Anchor Responds to Bully

    One form of workplace bullying received some national attention in the last couple of days. We have been hearing about Jennifer Livingston, an anchor/reporter at WKBT-TV in La Crosse, Wisconsin, who took to the airwaves to respond to a man who had emailed her to say she was overweight and hence not a “suitable role model” for little girls. As the mother of three little girls, whom she says she has always taught to stand up to bullies, she decided to be a good role model to them and stand up to the man by whom she felt bullied.

    Bus Monitor Bullied by Kids

    Another example of workplace bullying that was widely covered by the media and touched the hearts of millions, was the bullying of a 68-year-old bus monitor, Karen Klein.

    As you will see in the video filmed by one of the bullies, Mrs. Klein endured repeated daily verbal assaults by a group of middle-school students on the school bus.

    If an adult can be brought to tears by school bullies, one can only imagine the kind of bullying that other kids across this country endure everyday on their school bus rides to and from school, without the benefit of bus monitors. Most of these bullied children endure this kind of torture silently, afraid to tell anyone for fear of greater retribution by the bullies and the bullies’ friends.

    It is time we all do something to eradicate bullying in all its ugly forms. Take a personal pledge to stand up to bullies and stand up for others. The worst thing we can do is to do nothing.

    “The world is a dangerous place, not because of those who do evil, but because of those who look on and do nothing.” – Albert Einstein

    Did You Know… Facts & Statistics

  • More than 160,000 U.S. students stay home from school each day from fear of being bullied.
  • 41 percent of kids that are bullied do not tell anyone that it happened.
  • Over 12 million children a year experience bullying.
  • Over 5 million children in America are the victims of cyber-bullying and, of that group, 14% commit suicide.
  • Forty-five state laws direct school districts to adopt bullying policies.
  • 53.5 million Americans or 35% of the U.S. workforce are bullied at work each year.
  • 45% of those who are targets of workplace bullying experienced stress-related health problems, debilitating anxiety, panic attacks, clinical depression (39%), and even post-traumatic stress disorder.

  • October 5, 2012: Twitter Townhall @StopBullyingGov; 3-4pm EST / 12-1pm PST; use #BullyFreeDC
  • October 6, 2012: Run, Walk, Roll Against Bullying: A non-competitive race to raise awareness & funds to fight bullying. (Kits available to register and stage a race in your community.) |
  • October 10, 2012: Unity Day – A day when people across the country will wear orange as a show of support for students who have been bullied. (Print: Unity Day Flyer) |
  • October 19, 2012: Spirit Day – An annual day in October when millions of Americans wear purple to speak out against bullying and to show their support for lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender (LGBT) youth. |
  • October 14-20, 2012: Freedom from Workplace Bullies Week |

  • Pacer’s National Bullying Prevention Center: They unite, engage and educate communities nationwide to address bullying through creative, relevant and interactive resources, including founding the Anti-Bullying National Awareness Month in 2006, Unity Day, and many other events. |
  • Teens Against Bullying: Created by and for teens, it’s a place for middle and high school students to find ways to address bullying, to take action, to be heard, and to join an important social cause. |
  • Kids Against Bullying: A creative, innovative, and educational site designed by and for elementary school students to learn about bullying prevention, engage in activities, and be inspired to take action. |
  • Digital Anti-Bullying Petition: Sign the digital petition to support the movement against bullying. |
  • The Bully Project: The website for the great 2012 documentary film, Bully. Information and resources. |
  • Stop Bullying: The US Federal government anti-bully website with incredible resources of information and action. Join them in a Twitter Townhall @StopBullyingGov on October 5, 2012, 3-4pm EST / 12-1pm PST; use #BullyFreeDC |
  • 121 Help Me: Connecting bullied youth to help lines. You can chat online or call 1-855-201-2121, a 100% free call. |
  • Stand Up To Bullies – YouTube Channel: Offers a collection of videos from around YouTube related to the issue of bullying and anti-bullying from various perspectives. |
  • The Workplace Bullying Institute: Offers resources and education to those bullied at work and to managers who wish to stop it. |
  • Their mission is to prevent bullying in society through education and awareness. They offer educational programs and resources. |
  • This website contains a great section on bullying, with many sources of information, and resources for parents and teachers. |
  • The National Child Traumatic Stress Network (NCTSN): Among its many other good works, the NCTSN is providing resources for families, teens, educators, clinicians, mental health professionals, and law enforcement personnel on how to recognize, deal with, and prevent bullying, in support of Anti-Bullying National Awareness Month. |
  • NOH8 Campaign: The NOH8 Campaign is a charitable organization whose mission is to promote marriage, gender and human equality through education, advocacy, social media, and visual protest. |
  • NOH8 Campaign – YouTube Channel: Offers many informative, celebrity-based videos on anti-bullying, worth watching and sharing. |
  • Analysis of State Bullying Laws and Policies |

  • Martie Hevia © 2012 | All Rights Reserved

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