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Bullying in Ireland is a behavioural problem which affects the lives of thousands of school children and their families.
The fear, frustration, social isolation, humiliation and loss of self esteem which children experience when bullied results in absenteeism from school, poor or deteriorating schoolwork, personality changes, illness, depression and unfortunately sometimes suicide. Most children and teenagers have been teased by a sibling or a friend at some point. And it’s not usually harmful when done in a playful, friendly, and mutual way, and both kids find it funny. But when teasing becomes hurtful, unkind, and constant, it crosses the line into bullying and needs to stop.
The Nationwide Study of Bullying in Irish first and second level schools conducted by Dr Mona O’Moore in Trinity College Dublin indicates that some 31% of Primary Students and 16% of Secondary Students have been bullied at some time. Bullying is intentional tormenting in physical, verbal, or psychological ways. It can range from hitting, shoving, name-calling, threats, and mocking to extorting money and treasured possessions. Some kids bully by shunning others and spreading rumors about them. Others use email, chat rooms, instant messages, social networking websites, and text messages to taunt others or hurt their feelings.
Signs to watch out for:
- Unexplained bruising, cuts or damaged clothes
- Inability to concentrate
- No interest in school
- May not want to go to school
- Creative ways of expressing turmoil, i.e., artwork or writing
- Unexplained mood swings or behaviour
- becoming withdrawn
- becoming clinging
- attention seeking
- aggressive behaviour
- Out of character behaviour in class
- Visible signs of anxiety or distress – refusal to say what is wrong
- Lingering behind
- Increased requests for pocket money or stealing money
In all situations, an adult must intervene to prevent and stop bullying.
If you think that your child is experiencing bullying, please speak with the child and school.
If you are concerned about the psychological and behavioural effects of bullying on a child, please Phone or Text us on 087 0680424 or email email@example.com.
http://abc.tcd.ie/school.html (accessed on 12/02/2013)