Reflection On Bullying

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The journal articles for this section of the course, gave me an opportunity to reflect a lot on my own experiences with aggression and bullying during my childhood and early adolescence. When I think about bullying behavior, I define it as acts of verbal and/or physical intimidation, inflicted upon a person in order to humiliate and hurt that person. I was initially surprised to see that according to research, relational aggression is prevalent starting with fourth and fifth graders. Based on my own experiences, I found that relational aggression was prevalent during my middle school years. Just as the research demonstrates (Murray-Close, Ostrov, & Crick, 2007), relational aggression increased over time amongst girls. As discussed by Murray-Close,…show more content…
However, upon further thought I think it depends on what platform is being used to facilitate the cyberbullying. Most of the bullying I witnessed in school was less physical and more relational, and most were done through face-to-face interactions. I witnessed a lot of name-calling and verbal harassment. I have also witnessed bullies sabotaging their victims by scheming horrible actions, such as spreading rumors that get the victim shunned away or teased. But the times that I did witness cyberbullying, I saw it as more of an instrument used to increase the torment for the victim outside school or as a way for bullies to avoid being caught in the act of bullying. Cyber-bullying is prevalent with the increase in the use and access to the Internet and electronic devices such as smart phones. Two instances that come to mind with cyberbullying were from my early adolescence. In middle school, a student created a blog inspired by the book and TV series, Gossip Girl, that teased students by posting secrets or rumors that can humiliate them. And in order to bypass the permanency of cyberbullying actions, anonymous online forums such as Formspring became popular to avoid tracing where the source of bullying. While I assume anyone mentioned on these site would be upset by what was posted one way or another, I think for the students who were already being bullied in school, these platforms just made things worse because makes it hard for them to escape the harassment. While one could argue that one can just brush off hurtful words, I think it can be difficult if this is occurring in conjunction with physical or in person relational aggression. And when we think about those affected by bullying, they may already be dealing with other internal as well as external conflicts that could make it difficult to ignore bullying in this form. Furthermore, I would
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