The Detrimental Effects of Traditional Bullying and Cyber Bullying

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We have all heard the phrase “sticks and stones may break my bones but words can never hurt me” on the playground or school bus ride home. The phrase was normally thrown out to bullies during a fight in the schoolyard, pushes in the hall, food thrown in the cafeteria, or during the endless teasing and taunting on bus rides to/from school.

According to a national survey conducted by the National Center for Education Services, U.S. Department of Education in 2002, 32% of students in grades 6-12 reported being bullied. Only 9% reported injuries or needing medical attention.

Fast forward to 2011 when these same victims of traditional bullying are now college-aged. After suffering the detrimental effects of their traditional bullying experiences, these same individuals now face a new form of bullying with the help of technology: cyber bullying. With the help of high-tech methods of communication, bullies are targeting their victims in non-traditional forms; not with a push or punch thrown, but with words.

Words, after all, do have meaning. “If they didn't, there would be no such thing as understandable communication. If words did not matter, why would anyone write a poem, a book, an article, or song lyrics? Why would we try to talk to each other, if words did not matter? Why do advertisers go to such pains to develop the right phrases in order to sell their products, or songwriters and authors spend time rewriting and rewriting until they get their ideas expressed in just the right way? Words are what we use to convey deeply held feelings, beliefs, and ideas.” (Whittemore, 2009)

Words can cut like a knife through our souls and leave scars for a lifetime. Who has not been hurt by a loved one who spouted off in a fi...

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15. "Bullying Statistics / Cyber Bullying Statistics / School Bullying Statistics." How to Stop Bullying: Stop the Harassment before It Causes Permanent Damage. 2009. Web. 4 Nov. 2010.

16. National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (April 24, 2001)/ Survey finds bullying widespread in U.S. schools.

17. National Association of Attorneys General. (2000). Bruised Inside: What Our Children Say About Youth Violence, What Caused It, and What We Should Do About It.

18. Whittemore, Becky. Sticks and Stones May Break My Bones (But Words Can Do Even More Damage. Associated Content. 17, March 2009. 15 February 2011.
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