There were over 25,700 childline counselling sessions due to bullying last year (Bentley, H et al 2016 – How Safe Are Our Children? The Most Comprehensive Overview Of Child Protection UK 2016).
There were over 11,000 counselling sessions with young people who talked to childlike about online issues in 2015 (NSPCC 2016 Childline Annual Reviee2015/16: It Turned Out Someone Did Care).
Over half of lgbtq young people have experienced homophobic bullying at school (Guasp, A 2012 – The Experiences Of Gay Young People In Britains Schools 2012).
45% of 13-18 year olds have experienced bullying by the age of 18. The primary reason? Physical Apperarance.
1 in 10 teenagers have attempted to die by suicide (independent.co.uk April 2014).
61% of those surveyed had been attacked physically. 10% had been sexually attacked. 83% of those said it had had an impact on their self esteem.(independent.co.uk April 2014)
Bullying incidents are highest among those with a disability. 63% reported being bullied and/or socially excluded. 1 in 3 said it was as a result of prejudice (homophobia/ racism/ religious reasons). (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
Victims of bullying are less likely to do well in their exams. 41% of non bullied children scored A*/A compared to 30% of bullied children. Schools FAILING to tackle bullying. (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
HOWEVER. On the flip side 50% of young people have bullied someone. And furthermore 30% admitted they do it at least once a week. (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
69% Of young people have witnessed someone being bullied, 43% witness it at least once a week. (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
Unsurpisingly to me, appearance is the number one aggressor of bullying. 51% said they were bullied because of how they look, 26% was weight targeted, 21% was body shape, 18% clothing related, 14% facial features, 9% down to glasses and 8% because of hair colour. (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
Overall, 47% of young people in the UK want to change their appearance! (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
48% of these want teeth whitening. 17% want breast implants. 6% want liposuction. 5% want botox. (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
The next set of stats continued to BLOW MY MIND ( and not in a good way!)
74% of those bullied have at some point been physically attacked. 17% sexually assaulted. 62% cyber bullied. (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
29% ,yes, 29% have self harmed. 27% have skipped class. 14% developed an eating disorder. 12%! Yes, 12% RAN AWAY FROM HOME. (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
Of those bullied, 98% was a peer, another student. 17% was from a sibling. 13% was from a TEACHER. WHY ARE TEACHERS BULLYING OUR CHILDREN? 8% was from parents or guardians! (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
55% of young people reported bullying. 92% to a teacher only 49% of those were satisfied with the results. 86% to a family member only 82% of those were satisfied with the result. 69% reported to a friend, only 72% of those were satisfied. (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
45% of young people DID NOT REPORT. 32% of those didn’t think they would be taken SERIOUSLY. 32% were too EMBARRASSED and 26% were scared of it getting worse. (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
LAST STATS I PROMISE.
Those who bullied were more likely to be in trouble with the law 36% vs witnesses 23% and the victims 22%. (Ditchthelable.org – The Annual Bullying Survey 2015: UK Bullying Statistics 2015).
That’s it. I’m done.
I’ll give you a moment to let those numbers sink in. It took me a minute.
It has absolutely left me speechless, first when I was researching last night and now as I have typed this.
So I want to move on to my opinions on this subject. First of all I would like to say this is an extremely important subject and although it is all over TV I feel it should be broadcast more.
Social media platforms are starting to show it, with videos of physical attacks often going viral over the last few months. Thinking back I have seen at least 3 videos of different school age children being physically attacked. What makes matters worse is the people recording, and egging the attacker on. I heard in one video I watched where a young girl of maybe 14 was on the floor being kicked, hair pulled and punched, one of the attackers friends (both female) yelling at her to keep going and to “batter” her. I won’t put anything else as it’s absolutely vile. WHY? This poor had done nothing wrong (and even if she had, she did NOT deserve that).
I don’t care what you did. No one deserves to be hit, unless they attacked you first, then I believe in “don’t start it but you can finish it”. That’s my philosophy.
I’ve been bullied since I was in about year 2. It was a girl either 2 or 3 years above me. She lives (possibly, I don’t know if she still does or if she’s moved out) right down the road from me, less than 10 minutes round the corner. I can’t remember exactly what she picked on me about to begin with, but I know towards the end of my primary school years (or rather hers as she went up to secondary school when I was in year 3 or 4) that it was my weight. Luckily, when I moved up to the same secondary school she ignored me. However we’d spent 4 years at least on the same school bus and were now doomed to another 3/4 years on the same school bus again. I was always weary she would start on me again.
I started year 7 with no problems. But after about 2/3 weeks I was being bullied by multiple people, not nessecarily directly bullied but I was excluded, picked last in PE, or any other group games, or team building days( we did a lot of those). What really got me though, was that if I was picked last, sometimes the teacher would choose what team I would go on, and you could see the team leaders (usually a peer) face drop at the fact I was put on their team. It bloody hurts your heart when you know no one wants you. No one cares for you.
I remember it getting to a point, I can’t remember exactly when, when it became direct, it wasn’t exclusion or ignoring anymore. It was full on someone telling me “we don’t want you on our team your fat”, or “you’re no good”. That was even worse. And it didn’t really change throughout my schooling. I was either ignored or directly told I wasn’t wanted/ I wasn’t good enough/ I wasn’t liked. When I got to year 8, I started smoking. I thought at the time I had started because I had lost a close friend. But perhaps subconsciously it was so I could fit in. So someone would talk to me. I had a small group of friends at school, which is more than some people who are bullied can say. We were 3 guys and 2 girls, we were outcasts. My friend (the girl and I) would sneak off to the field for a ciggy when we should have been in class. I would try and make friends with the other “smokers”. I so desperately wanted to fit in. I’ve come to accept now that I just sorta don’t fit in anywhere. I only have one good friend who I can trust and rely on. I have a bunch of acquaintances but they don’t really talk to me unless it benefits them. So I don’t bother.
I’ve been on both sides of the coin though. I’ve been bullied and I’ve bullied.
There was one girl that I was with through primary school and for about 2 years in secondary school. She was in my year. She lives in the next village over to me (again maybe I don’t really know). I remember her vividly, as though she was in front of me. She had awful buck teeth, she had grey hair and I’m not talking the trendy dyed grey “granny” hair that’s been going around, but full on granny looking, curly short grey hair. And the worst thing was that she stank. I don’t me she had done PE that morning and was a bit sweaty, she stank. And it wasn’t on paticular days like PE days, it was constant. As though she only bathed once a week or even less frequently than that. She sat next to me in RE. And I remember ignoring her and turning my face away and talking to whoever was on my other side, for the entire lesson. And she sat next to the wall, so she had no one to talk to ever. And I remember telling my “friends” that that grey haired girl (I know her name but obviously won’t put it on here) stank. Grey haired girl, if you see this, I’m sorry.
There was another girl too, she was different, she didn’t stink and her hair (apart from being a bit flyaway) was relatively normal. But she always came off as a bit slow. Knowing what I know now (after having done a childcare course and worked in care with children and adults) I might say that she had a learning disability. I was nice to her face sometimes. I would be rude behind her back, tell people she was weird etc. Girl, I’m sorry.
There was one last girl, she lives next door to me and I know she still does. I was very two faced with her way back when. She pissed me the hell off. She was so hyperactive. She wouldn’t sit down on the bus, she tried too hard to flirt with the boys on the bus and she thought she was the bees fucking knees and couldn’t understand why hardly anyone liked her on the bus. She’s a year younger than me so I only saw her on the bus on the way to and from school. Even her younger sister would shout at her and tell her she was being weird and no one was laughing with her but at her. She just didn’t get it. She’s at uni now. Well done, girl.
And that’s it. As of now 19.00 on the 21st October 2016, I have one friend who would bother to reply if I messaged them. And who wouldn’t let me down and who I’ve known for over 2 years and not had one argument with.
And to be honest. I’m not happy. But, I’ll deal.
I hope this post gives you a bit of insight. It sure as hell did me. And if you think, even if you don’t do it on purpose, that you might be bullying someone. Stop. Take a step back and just evaluate what you’re doing. People have died because of bullying. Heck the girl who was a bit slow, or the girl with grey hair could be dead right now, I don’t know, but they could be. Perhaps I wasn’t the only one bullying them.
Just think about it.