If There's One Thing That You Should Remember In Life, It's That You Should Treat Everyone The Way You Want To Be Treated

If Theres One Thing That You Should Remember In Life, Its That You Should Treat Everyone The Way You Want To Be Treated

We need to start identifying the triggers that aggravate mental health issues in our society - bullying, social media negativity and anxiety, gender based violence, substance abuse, stigma around issues such as maternal issues, etc., and we need to speak up about these more and get to the source of the problems.

-Sanam Saeed

Mental Health

Bullying can seem like it's not that big of a deal, hey everyone goes through it right? Well, that's exactly the problem. Bullying is such a big cause of mental health problems in this world, it causes such pain that it can hurt someone for their entire lives or even can make someone lose their life. And why do we do it? Because people are different, which should be celebrated, but that's not the case. Bullying can happen at any age, not necessarily by school age kids and that's also a big problem, especially with social media everywhere now. Cyberbullying is everywhere and you can't escape, unlike traditional bullying unless you stop going on your social media accounts. And this can cause PTSD, anxiety, depression, suicidal thoughts and actions, and more. As a society, we shouldn't be bullying others for things they can't change, it can have a profound impact on the bullied individual.

And there are some who actually believe that bullying is a good thing, because hey, there isn't enough mental health problems in this world, is there? The believe that it doesn't cause pain is the most ridiculous opinion anyone could make. Because how is it alright to terrorize someone until they dread even living another day? Bullying makes people question their worth, their mere existence, because it's one of the most painful things you can go through in life. The saying "sticks and stones can break my bones, but words can never hurt me," is completely wrong. Yes, there are some people who brush it off, but the majority of people don't. Have you ever suffered from PTSD, depression, or anxiety? I have. I have seen many others suffer from it too. It has made a significant impact on my life.

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Bullying is so common that it's viewed as almost 'normal,' but it should never be.

-Choi Si-won

Statistics

  • One out of every five students report being bullied
  • The reasons for being bullied reported most often by students include physical appearance, race/ethnicity, gender, disability, religion, sexual orientation
  • One in five (20.9%) tweens (9 to 12 years old) has been cyberbullied, cyberbullied others, or seen cyberbullying
  • 49.8% of tweens (9 to 12 years old) said they experienced bullying at school and 14.5% of tweens shared they experienced bullying online
  • Students who experience bullying are at increased risk for depression, anxiety, sleep difficulties, lower academic achievement, and dropping out of school
  • Students who are both targets of bullying and engage in bullying behavior are at greater risk for both mental health and behavior problems than students who only bully or are only bullied
  • Bullied students indicate that bullying has a negative effect on how they feel about themselves (27%), their relationships with friends and family (19%), their school work (19%), and physical health (14%)
  • Tweens who were cyberbullied shared that it negatively impacted their feelings about themselves (69.1%), their friendships (31.9%), their physical health (13.1%), and their schoolwork (6.5%)
  • Among students ages 12 – 18 who reported being bullied at school, 15% were bullied online or by text
  • The percentages of individuals who have experienced cyberbullying at some point in their lifetimes have more than doubled (18% to 37%) from 2007-2019
  • Of those students who reported being bullied, 13% were made fun of, called names, or insulted; 13% were the subject of rumors; 5% were pushed, shoved, tripped, or spit on; and 5% were excluded from activities on purpose
  • In 2016, 10.3% of students told us that they had stayed home from school because of cyberbullying. In 2023, that number nearly doubled to 19.2%. Finally, in 2016, about 43% of students said that bullying and cyberbullying were “a big problem” in their schools while in 2023 54% of students said that was the case
  • In 2021, 48,183 people died by suicide in the United States. That is one death every 11 minutes
  • In 2021, 12.3 million adults seriously thought about suicide
  • In 2021, 3.5 million adults made a plan
  • In 2021, 1.7 million adults attempted suicide

Example of cyberbullying seriously hurting someone that they had suicidal thoughts

If Theres One Thing That You Should Remember In Life, Its That You Should Treat Everyone The Way You Want To Be Treated

When girls bully, it's very subtle, and you can't define it. At least with boys, the bullying is usually explicit, and you can deal with it. It's psychological with girls -Natalie Dormer

My own story When I was 7 years old I immigrated from an Eastern European country to the United States. I didn't speak an ounce of English and it was a complete culture shock to me. I had a funny name which kids never let me forget, until I changed it when I was 12 years old. Nonetheless, I strived to learn the language and to fit in. I succeeded in the former exceptionally well. However, the latter was much more difficult than I could have thought. In Eastern Europe, things are seen acceptable that aren't acceptable in the U.S, and I learned that the hard way. When I was seven I got in trouble, because I wore tights as pants, which is completely normal in my own country. The kids didn't take well to me and instead ostracized me, which hurt a lot. It took a year for me to be fluent in English, but even I still had an accent that I didn't grow out of until a couple years later. It hurt and I tried to fit and finally when I was finally being accepted, my parents got divorced and we moved. At the new school, the bullying became worse. Kids stared at me, pointed at me, started rumors about me, and on my birthday they quite clearly and loudly declared that I don't matter and that they don't care about me at all. I cried on that day right in class and still the kids laughed. A former friend of mine also got jealous that a our friend liked me and tricked me into doing sexual stuff with her, mind you I was 10 and didn't understand a thing about sex or even what it was at that age I just thought what we did felt good, that's it. When I asked her if we could do that again, she quite clearly looked at me in disgust and said no and then proceeded to tell the guy that liked me about it. I am a straight woman, by the way, and I had no attraction towards my friend. I was just a naïve 10 year old girl. The first time I tried to kill myself was when I was 11 years old. The kids at school convinced me that no one cared about me, that I was absolutely disgusting, and worthless. That day I went home, went to my moms room and sat on her bed and stared at the big mirror in her room, then I proceeded to try to choke myself to death all while crying and telling myself how worthless I was. As the years went on, I was bullied for my looks, my clothes, my body, etc... and it hurt. It seemed that no matter what, even when I tried to be exactly like those other popular girls, I was still always bullied. When I was 15 in my first year of high school, my best friend betrayed me, and after all those years of bullying plus that, it sent me over the edge. I was numb to the world and lost all sense of time. I didn't care about anything anymore. I hated myself and everything else in my life. I had to be homeschooled, because of my severe depression. I also made bad choices, because I was so numb and in pain that I wanted to feel better. At 15, I was already well endowed with big breasts and a big butt, so I was invited to a college party on Halloween and I went to it, with a short skirt, tank top, and knee high boots and thigh high socks. At that party, I drank beer and made out with a college guy who was 21 years old. Then I finally went home at 4am. In hindsight, I now realize it was extremely reckless of me to do that and so many things could have gone wrong, but at that time I didn't care. My depression continued well into my 19th year, by the time I was 17 I was already living alone and had tried to kill myself several more times through drowning, overdose, and strangling myself again. I was also scratching myself while telling myself I wasn't good enough. I was so lonely and extremely depressed that I begged my mom to buy me a dog, otherwise I knew I wouldn't make it and she did. My puppy saved me, I was finally feeling something other than pain and numbness. But by that point, it was already too late and I had developed social anxiety, general anxiety, major depression, and PTSD. In college I barely interacted with anyone, preferring to be alone and get home as quickly as possible after class. When someone did try to interact with me, I got scared that I would mess things and that they wouldn't like me. I kept having flashbacks to the time I was in school and therefore gave a minimal answer back. I was friendly, but distant. Eventually, I got into a writing group online when I was about 21 and had my first bump into cyberbullying. I would hate messages so much, that it no longer made me happy to write, I would also get messages that told me to die and how ugly and stupid I was. It made me spiral into a deeper depression like before and I eventually quit that group. And of course, during that time I also tried to kill myself over and over again.

I am 30 years old now and I still have PTSD, social anxiety, general anxiety, severe persistent depressive disorder with major depressive episodes. I have no friends, when I do have friends, eventually I distance myself from them because I fear bothering them. I have no boyfriend, because i'm scared he will reject me once he get's to know me. And I still occasionally try to kill myself, because some days are alright, while others make me wish I was never born and hope to die. I have even prayed to god that he would kill me. I also still bump into cyberbullying and harassment occasionally where i'm told so many nasty things that make me spiral again and again. I'm broken, and even though I have tried to fix myself many times over, bullying has caused me a lifetime of pain and a profound sense of worthlessness and that I am and never will be good enough. And no matter how my family tries to help me, my heart is forever shattered by my childhood pain caused by bullying. I have been scarred for life.

Remember, people shouldn't be mean to others and bully them. You don't know what someone is going through, your comments might just push them over the edge. If you have nothing nice to say, don't say anything at all.

If Theres One Thing That You Should Remember In Life, Its That You Should Treat Everyone The Way You Want To Be Treated
If There's One Thing That You Should Remember In Life, It's That You Should Treat Everyone The Way You Want To Be Treated
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