The Smoke Signal

Be Buddies Not Bullies

Andrew Goodspeed and Kevin Valdez

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Verbal bullying often starts as harmless teasing and sometimes escalates into harassment and mental abuse. All bullying is someone acting rude to make themselves feel superior. Verbal bullying could lead to problems with people’s’self-esteem and own image. Some cases can lead to depression or suicide.

Verbal bullying is hard to control because it is hard to see the damage that it causes. There are many ways to deal with it, like ignoring the bully, talking with friends about it, and telling an adult. The best prevention of verbal bullying would be setting a good example.

Reasons for a person to start bullying can be anything from how somebody dresses to the color of their skin. It can easily lead to other forms of bullying such physical bullying or cyberbullying.

People may not even know that they are bullies and may see their actions as just joking around. Even teachers and parents may be verbal bullies without even realizing it. Verbal bullies often torment people because of looks or characteristics that stand out in the victim.

Verbal bullies often will say things like “Can’t you take a joke?” or “I was just kidding!” to justify their actions and will make it seem like the victim is overreacting to a real issue. Many victims of verbal bullying don’t tell anyone because it might make them seem weak.

Even rumors are considered verbal bullying because it might ruin someone’s image even if it isn’t true. It is a fine line between friends having fun and verbal bullying. This makes it hard to punish the bullies. Bullies don’t always get caught, and often continue to bully without much thought.

A poll done at asked more than 18,000 students about bullying. 36% of students said that verbal bullying was an issue at their school. 39% of high school students thought that verbal bullying was a problem compared to 29% of primary school students.

Verbal bullying can happen face to face or online in the form of cyberbullying. Cyberbullying is very hard to track and is almost completely anonymous. It is especially hard to control and a single person could torment thousands of people, leaving a lasting impact on people who they possibly never met in real life. It can be a hateful text message or even repeated social media attacks.

Verbal bullying is the most widespread in schools. It can happen at any age range or social standing. In younger grades it is mainly name calling, where older grades mainly have rumors behind the victim’s back.

Some people are the victim of verbal bullying and may not realize it. Some adults will even shrug it off as kids acting like kids. Almost all students have witnessed verbal bullying at some point.

Verbal bullying can be as simple as a rude remark by someone walking by to a rumor spread throughout the entire school. Anyone can fall victim to bullying just as easily as being the bully. 






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The Student News Site of Ripon High School
Be Buddies Not Bullies