Bullies have been around since the beginning of time, but the addition of social media seems to make the issue even more pervasive. Much has been written about the effects of bullying on victims, but not a lot has been said about the mental health of the bullies themselves. The results of a recent article revealed some surprising insight: both bullies and their victims are at higher risk of suicide, and it’s a problem we need to address.
NPR posted a recent article on the subject, citing a report from the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) that both bullying and cyberbullying were major risk factors for teen suicide, and claimed that both the victims of bullying and their persecutors were at risk. The article states, “A CDC survey last year found that 17 percent of teens in high school said they had seriously considered suicide in the previous 12 months, and 2.7 percent had made an attempt that resulted in an injury.” The numbers are extraordinary, and the AAP report states a clear link between bullying and suicidal ideation for both parties. It’s a fact of which parents and teens should be aware.
Read the article, and then see if you or someone you love might be at risk. There are many solutions for a better life, and as the It Gets Better Project says, things do indeed improve. But caring for one’s mental health is always of the utmost importance, and if bullying and/or cyberbullying are part of your story, there are answers, there can be relief, and there are people who are willing to help.