As many of you know, bullying is aggressive behavior among children and teenagers in school that has been repeated or may soon be repeated. Children who bully others often have something going on in their lives or have recently had an incident that they haven’t dealt with very well. Oftentimes, ones who struggle in their lives tend to try and make others feel the same way to try and feel better about themselves.

There are three types of bullying that can occur and if you notice them, you should be the one to put a stop to it. One of them is verbal which consists of teasing, name calling, inappropriate comments, or threatening to use harm. Another form of bullying is social bullying and that’s where another person is left out on purpose, they spread rumors about them or continue to embarrass them in public. The last form of bullying is physical. This is one you tend to not see very often, but is still there and obviously consists of hitting, spitting, pushing and taking or breaking someone’s things.

At prairie, not much of this has been seen because it can be behind the scenes such as on social media, but it is very heard of. A lot of times, not much action is taken by the students around, which are also known as the bystanders. Bystanders often encourage the situation because they think it’s funny and some people even get it on video if it were a fight for example.

There have been multiple incidents at school where bullying of one person leads to the bully pulling the victim to the ground at some point. A lot of times, an administrator or one of the teachers that are near the situation try to stop it, but that doesn’t make it so it won’t continue ever again. The ones who bully others genuinely don’t care and it takes a lot for them to stop. A fight every once in awhile between two people that has an argument once isn’t considered bullying, but when it occurs multiple times, that’s when it needs to be stopped.

Not only are there fights at Prairie, but last week, a group of girls and I were sitting at lunch when the table behind us was full and another teenage boy wanted to sit there. Instead of him being polite and going to sit at another table, he grabs one of the kids out of the seat, throws him to the ground, sets his tray with him and sits down. Everyone at the table thought it was the funniest thing ever, but someone sitting at my table asked, “What was up with that?” and the boy turned away with no response.

Mistreatment of the boy who was pulled out of his seat has happened multiple times. He plays football and doesn’t earn a lot of playing time, so the other players make fun of him and treat him like absolute garbage both inside and outside of football. THIS is bullying because it happens repeatedly and is making another person feel horrible about themselves. All he wants is to be accepted and treated like a normal person just like all of the other people he wants to hang out with.

Bullying is something that is actually frequently common when it should not be. Statistics show that nationwide, 21% of students ages 12-18 have experienced bullying and 20% of students in grades 9-12 have reported being bullied on school property.

With bullying comes a lot of different thoughts from the people who are being bullied. They don’t think very highly of themselves and continue to bring themselves down as well because they feel as if they have no purpose. Students who are bullied are approximately 2 to 9 times more likely to have suicidal thoughts and want to commit suicide rather than those who are not bullied.

These statistics and issues that we see throughout our own school are insane and need to be dealt with thoroughly and YOU can be one to stop it. If you see one of your classmates, friends, or your children if you are a parent, please tell someone. Whether it be a teacher you’re comfortable with, a counselor, an administrator or even one of your parents that you know will talk to the school, tell someone. Also, if you are or have been a victim of bullying, talk. Get your word out there because you matter.

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