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Bullying in high school settings.

Bullying & The Modern Teenager!

Original paper: November 2, 2004

Revised: March 8th , 2013

Written by: Lillian B. Rose


The high school environment of a modern teenager is a place in which one must learn coping mechanisms to survive bullies, hatred, and harassment. Survival depends on bigger issues than peer pressure alone. Though teenagers are linked to many issues, there are subgroups or roles teenagers play that also contribute to their existence. These Roles include student, significant others, victims, bullies, and friends among others. The modern high school is a trying environment of trouble. Teenagers fail to regulate their emotions, are caught up in risky behaviors, or are living with rejection that has severe consequences. Among solutions are crackdown polices and court dates. Have we solved problems or worsened them? What are the similarities between victims and bullies? Is bullying harassment? When does bullying lead to violence in our schools? Is any of this preventable? I hope that by the end of the paper I can say we have options. But don’t just take my word for it: here’s a poem by a 17 year old.

Please . . . Listen to My Cries

I don’t know what’s going on

I can’t tell which way to go

I am so lost and confused

You don’t even know.

My mind is such a mess

I don’t know what to do

I need some way out

I wish that somebody knew.

I cry for help all the time

And wish that someone would care

This pain and confusion I have,

It’s just too hard to bear.

Please someone help me

Before it is too late

I need someone’s care and love

Please help me, don’t wait.

(Simmons, 2004, p99)

Issues & The Teenager.

There are many aspects of the teenage environment: drugs, suicide, risky behavior, violence, sexual harassment, sex issues, emotional problems like anger and depression, peer harassment, cyberstalking, and homophobia. Being a teenager means developing self esteem, investigating sexuality, taking risks, fitting in, keeping up with the times, and commonly dealing with drug issues. Teenagers may alter behavior based on setting and circumstance. Teenagers use a false self to defend their developing self esteem. Teenagers are also on a quest to develop themselves as unique. Teenagers feel they are more important than they actually are. This is called adolescent egocentrism (Berger, 2004 ).

Most teenagers do not know the difference between intoxication, withdrawal, and dependency when it comes to drugs. Smoking or drinking often act as “gateway drugs” to higher risk substances. Drugs use expands to cover more types. Ten to fifteen of every 100 people are alcoholics or have the predispositions to become one. Teenagers are included in this group. In a survey, 27 percent of high school seniors reported binge drinking. They drank five or more drinks at a time (Watter). People with a predisposition can’t tell when to stop drinking and often get drunk. Best cure for a hangover is not to have one or allowing time to recover. Teenagers feel they can sober up by other means but that’s a fallacy. The average first time use of marijuana is 14 while alcohol exposure occurs generally before age 12. Drugs also lead to other problems like poor health, depression, truancy, grades dropping, problems with the law, and suicide. Outcasts and those with low self-esteem are among teenagers at risk. They may continue using with a clear picture of what the drugs do, and become upset when the poisons are not available.

Teenager of the alternative life crowd have higher rates of drug use. Seventy percent use marijuana, 29 percent use cocaine, 30 percent use meth, and 18 percent inject. The percentages are much lower for the “normal” crowd (Hatred in the Hallways, 2001). These figures are from Massachusetts. Drug factors could vary from state to state but the prevalence of drug users does increase in the GLBT community youth.

Sex issues and emotional problems are also big issues. The first sign that teens are developing sexual attractions is teasing the ones they are attracted to. Common sex issues include birth control, pregnancy, young love, rape, and sexism. About 25 percent of teenagers are sexually active by age 14. Teenagers explore less common forms of expressing sexuality. Teenagers do not consider their behavior sexual in some cases (Berger, 2004). Most teenagers don’t have all the facts so parents have an opportunity to better inform them before they make that decision. From experience, I have found that many sexually active teenagers face pregnancy issues from ages14-18. They then deal with the decision of adoption, abortion or, even the prospect of being a young mother. Some girls keep the baby and through the help of a support network seem to be doing alright. But the same “mothers” drop out of school or have social issues with the peers who were their friends. Most young fathers leave the picture.

Most early sex is regretted or done in the name of young love. “Young Love” is a concept based on observation of family couplings, friends’ relationships, and sitcoms or media couples. Some families, friends, and media couples are dysfunctional. Sometimes teenagers treat their observations as the norm. They tailor their couplings around these behaviors and observations they have made. Breakups lead to emotional issues, drugs, and as stated before sometimes suicide. Teenagers are less likely to leave a bad situation (Middelton-moz & Zawadski, 2002). The most popular ages for rape is between 14 and 25 (Milwaukee Women’s Center).

Some teenagers grapple with issues of sexual identity. People are identifying themselves as gay, lesbian, bisexual, or transgender at younger ages. These up and coming teenagers are publicly expressing their lifestyles rather than hiding their sexual identity. Few of these teenagers have not had problems with their heterosexual peers. The best estimate for the US of homosexual and bisexual youth is from 5-6% of the population (Hatred in the Hallways, 2001). Most teenagers living in an alternative lifestyle, have a hard time fitting in. Social approval is a high priority among teens. Teens pressure each other to conform to norms. Yes peer pressure does play a important role in the climate of the learning environment .

Peer harassment and homophobia often go hand in hand. Some boy-to-boy sexual harassment comes in the form of sports hazing. Physical harassment can also occur when a person is suspected of being homosexual. Girl-to-girl sexual harassment occurs in the form of notes, jeers, graffiti, and rumors (Stein, 1999). As for issues of peer harassment, social grouping is popular in North America. Common cliques focus on four statuses: popularity, being average, being neglected, and being rejected (Peer Harassment in Schools, 2001). Homophobia is a belief that if you are not living an alternative lifestyle, knowing someone who is will turn you into him/ her. It’s a common fallacy among teens. Most incidents of harassment in these cases go unreported. Most teenagers of this orientation feel pressure to pretend to be what they are not (Hatred in the Hallways, 2001).

Straight teenagers are involved in coercive dating relationships. Over half of females claim boys overestimate the level of intimacy, while 45% of males feel girls underestimate the level of intimacy. The age range of this survey is 17-22. Most incidence of sexual coercion leading to sex play occurred when they were friends, dating casually, or exclusively. Slightly over half of females felt that pressure ruined a relationship, while approximately 69% of males claimed the relationship stayed the same. Rape was most common between ages 16-18 for both sexes. While most females don’t talk about unwanted sex, males are more likely to talk about it. Pressure to have sex occurred mostly in long term and exclusive relationships (Patton & Manison, 1995).

Suicide, risky behavior, violence, sex issues, and emotional problems have a correlation to drugs. Suicide is also linked to major life crises like death, divorce, teen pregnancy, moving, and breaking up with significant other. About a quarter of homosexual and bisexual teens attempt suicide (Hatred in the halls, 2001). Most of the time, suicidal teens have been harassed or bullied. Suicide ideation or thinking about it is common in teenagers. About 24 percent plan or attempt suicide in high school according to the census bureau. A successful suicide can lead to cluster suicides or many suicides with a group (Berger, 2004).

Teens are involved in many risky behaviors. Violence leads young teens into the court system. Where young girls used be truant or disobedient, they are now victimizing each other. Many of the teens in these situations come from broken homes or have relatives who commit crimes. They are mostly repeat offenders and rarely have the support of their parents (Holmstron, 1995). Most teenagers rebel because issues of the parent/adolescent conflict are often based on personal expression. Adolescents, who happen to be white, take the most risk by smoking, drinking and with issues of suicide. Hispanic adolescents also have high incidence regarding weapons and suicide. Black teenagers take the biggest risk in weapons and having sex (Berger, 2004).

This is the electronic age. Teenagers today are connected electronically to friends and strangers via cell phones and computers. Video game units and role-playing games have also been very popular in the homes of this population. As we become more electronic, the issue of cyberstalking surfaces. Stalking has become computerized, as people are email bombed due to an out-going message. Stalking is targeting a person where he/she is comfortable through appearances, threats, and harassment. Cyberstalking takes it a step further by using the Internet. Info is found in the areas of private life, and results in communication through email or chat rooms that is threatening, or causes fear. Behaviors associated with cyberstalking are threats, false accusations, abuse through censored materials, computer viruses, gathering info through hacking, use of news affiliation to spread info, encouraging other to do the same, false orders in the person’s name, arranging a meeting, and sometimes physical assaults (Bocij, 2004). Some teens develop technology proficiency and in some cases learn to hack computers at this age. Monitoring use is a good idea but the only thing is a teen with hacker level proficiency would become problematic in terms of monitoring because the teens might edit the user history that most parents would check anyway. What are the risks of computers to young people? Some things are not bad in themselves but due to content, they have become disruptive.

The Bully

What is bullying? “Bullying involves intentional, repeated hurtful acts, words or behavior”(Middelton-Moz & Zawadski, 2002, p8 ). Bullies often have more than one target, not just one person. Gossip, humiliation and physical violence are three methods used to bully another person. When a group targets an individual, bullying is known as mobbing. Schools and communities classify children into cliques. Cliques are often social subgroups, sometimes based on actives in the arts, sports, and classes for college credit. When boys are targeted by girls, sexual harassment often gets overlooked. But girls are not the only ones targeting boys. Some rights of passage or hazing rituals could clearly be defined as harassment or bullying.

When bullying turns violent, children become inventive. Violence ranges from having your glasses broken by a bully to being shot by one. Three point seven million children between grades 6 and 10 are bullies. Sixty percent will have had a least one criminal conviction by age 24 (Sullivan, 2004). Bullies don’t feel in control unless they are down right cruel. Most of their victims classify them as a “nasty person”(Scholastic Scope, 2004, p17). The bully doesn’t always realize what they are doing unless confronted. “I was my own worse nightmare”(Scholastic Scope, 2004, p17).

The difference between bullying and harassment is harassment includes “prolonged attempts to intimidate another person”(Donahue, 2004, p14). Direct bullying includes physical attacks, threats, and name-calling. Indirect bulling attempts to isolate or exclude the victim from the crowd. While most bullies appear tough, they generally have poor self-esteem and they may have been bullied themselves (Donahue, 2004). The prevalence of bullying, sexual harassment, and drug abuse among teens leads to personality issues and social skills corruption. Their primary interactions with others include bullying and sexual harassment. Bullies include the defensive, insecure student. Recognizing defense behaviors will help you identify bullies. Bullies may be vengeful, scheming, manipulative, sarcastic, judgmental, superficial, self centered, or arrogant (Midleton-Moz & Zawadski, 2002). There are many defensive behaviors to choose from.

There are four common bullying styles: head-on collisions, behind the back, controlling, and sideswiping. A head-on collision is a bully attacking a victim verbally or non-verbally, face to face. Behind the back refers to the bully that attacks the victim from behind. Sideswiping is done more by girls. It means spreading rumors behind someone’s back while pretending to be their friend. Rumors, gossip and name-calling are all indirect aggression.

Most bullies can be described as aggressive. Aggressive people accuse, are often angry or belligerent, are intolerant of others, act superior or distant, prefer to be dominating, are defensive, and are super-sensitive. They tend to overreact. They cause more trouble due to the fact that they don’t listen well. They react to authority with behavior ranging from “passive non-compliance to open rebellion”(Raudsepp, 2004, p21). A 1996 study compares the occurrence of indirect aggression between the genders. It found that girls ages 15 and 17 tend to use indirect aggression more often than boys (Peer Harassment in School, 2001).

Social dominance theory classifies harassment into subtypes: bullying, aggression, and victimization. (Peer Harassment in School, 2001). Social rank theory includes eight terms of social interaction: agonic mode, catatheric signals, hedonic mode, involuntary subordination, not belonging, powerlessness, resource holding potential, and social attention holding power. Agonic mode describes dominance being established by physical aggression. A catatheric signal is when a teenager signals to a friend that a fight is in process and a crowd forms. All relationships are based on alliances and approval in hedonic mode. The term involuntary subordination describes the relationship between submission and aggression, which leads to dominance. Someone who lacks power in social interactions exhibits powerlessness. A person who feels powerless or is rejected often will not set major goals. Physical strength and aggressiveness used to establish status is described by the term resource holding potential. Positive personal recognition is social attention holding power (Peer Harassment in School, 2001). Passive, submissive or withdrawn behavior is, reported to be related to various psychological problems. Social rank theory describes how a number of patient complaints may have originated in shame, guilt or humiliation. Depression has a close relationship to peer harassment (Peer Harassment in School, 2001). Bullying behaviors draw attention and I found less of the them in people not included in my main social groups. But among familiar teens bullying, sexual harassment, and muckraking increase in likelihood. Maybe positive behaviors do exist but they just don't occur often enough in the primary and high school years.

The Victim

Victims are often different from the norm or have an undesirable trait. They were overweight. They wore glasses. They were happier reading than talking. They didn’t wear make-up. They wore the wrong brands of clothing. No one type of trait defines the mass of victims pursued by bullies. Jim Wheeler, an out of the closet teen in Pennsylvania, went looking for a safe haven. “(E)veryone deserves to walk down the halls of school and not feel harassment, not hear foul language”(Neff, 2004, p24). At 19 this victim chose to end the pain of peer harassment by hanging himself. He had been a recent graduate of our wonderful high school system in 1997. About 160,000 children play sick to avoid being bullied each day. About 3,000,000 students in grades 6 to 10 are victims (Sullivan, 2004).

What are some reasons bullying, harassment, and victimization are not reported? Victims failure to report is tied to many things like self blame, unrealness of the occurrence, a feeling they won’t be believed, fear of rejection by peers or others, false loyalty, and thoughts that stereotyping favors the bully. The state of the victim’s life may impede his/her ability to report. Some physical effects of sexual harassment are changes in weight, dependence on drugs, sleep disorders, headaches, and ulcers. Emotional effects include anxiety, dread, isolation, mood swings, humiliation, and stress. Truancy, loss of friends, lower grades, and damaged reputation are all examples of effects on school/experience. Failure to trust others, lack of opportunity, and financial instability are all possible future occurrences for a victim (Strauss, 1992). Educational, emotional, and behavioral impacts of harassment on a boy are found in lower percentages than for girls. Boy victims have higher percentages of low to nonexistent participation in class, and inability to concentrate, while for girl victims lack of desire to attend school is high. Both have high percentages in regards to feeling embarrassed, and avoiding the assailant (Stein, 1999).

Some victims are passive. They place others first even at the expense of themselves. They are often good actors. Their fear of rejection causes them to mindlessly agree with others. They bottle up issues by remaining silent. When they say no, they feel guilty afterwards. They have a hard time taking or giving criticism. They rarely ask for help (About Asertiveness, 2000). Passive people are often timid, feel the needs of others outweigh personal needs, have a need to please, live a life of constant fear, try to avoid attention, seldom make requests or express wishes, are often taken advantage of or manipulated, and may be prone to temper tantrums (Rausepp, 2003). Victims of school bullies often have poor coping skills, low self esteem, and lack protective friendships. Harassment and bullying tend to decrease with age. Younger people have a different definition of bullying. Older people are less likely to report incidents. Most bullies are older than the victim. Younger kids are not socially groomed to handle bullies and have few assertiveness skills (Peer Harassment in School, 2001).

A second victim is the outcast. You all remember Columbine High School. One 18 year old victim was called faggot and had rocks thrown at him. He was continuously terrorized by his schoolmates. The second victim describes his high school years with anger but sought protection from a band of misfits. This group insured his survival. He was a member of the same social group as the shooters were classified. These members kept silent fearing retribution from victims classifying them as all violent. The school shooters were not part of the Trench Coat Mafia, but friends of its most violent member. This was misreported by the news media. The main reason the media mislabeled the shooters was based on the jackets they used to conceal the weapons (School Violence, 2000). When people are pushed to their limits, sometimes bad things happen.

The High School Environment

The incidence of harassment and sexual harassment seems to be on the rise. Shootings, profanity and failure to obey rules are on the rise. Schools lack discipline. A few ruin the experience for those who come to learn. In some areas, suspensions don’t isolate the problem student from his environment. In some cases, the diversity of the classroom can lead to problems. In the 94/95 school year, 65% of suspensions were due to repeat offenders. One high school educator feels that it is the problem teenager who runs the high school environment. In the Columbine High School shooting incident, one of the shooters left a suicide note filled with anger and pain. Many cultural aspects, like violent video games, exposure to the internet, and heavy metal music; were blamed for the incident. But if you blame these cultural elements, you have to consider others who don’t react to these things in the same ways as the shooters (School Violence, 2000).

Teenagers in alternative life styles face a hostile environment. Sometimes even straight people are targeted by mistake. This is known as homophobic harassment. Any form of harassment interferes with the process of learning. Graffiti, written notes, drawings and telephone calls tighten the grip of harassment on the teenage student. It’s not so much just a comment, but a climate. One teenager defines harassment by the statement “No ones ever wanted to fight me”(Hatred in the Hallways, 2001, p38). This teenager doesn’t consider verbal attacks harassment. In schools “either every student is safe or there’s no meaningful safety at all”(School Violence, 2000, p67).

The schools of our nation show varied reactions to the problems. In a survey for 17 Magazine, three themes were common to the testimonials. Witnesses included adults working in the school, targets of harassment were rarely passive, and when girls reported the incident, they weren’t believed. In one high school of Virginia, staff carry walkie-talkies. They have a code for a fight. When the code is called out, the responding personnel don’t always know the nature of the fight. Will there be weapons or is it just another fist fight? The Columbine massacre is not an isolated incident but several suburban and rural schools have also made the list (School Violence, 2000).

Prevention and Intervention.

Some remedies to the bullying issue according to staff members and students are: better supervision, tougher discipline and more counseling. Staff feels tougher discipline is the best defense while students feel more counseling is the best defense. Most bullying occurs in the hallways. Some educators feel that rules are the only thing that protects them from the students, yet some students feel censored by the American school system. In some places heightened security has prevented firearms from entering our schools. The teachers are noticing that the modern teenager expresses violent themes in written and behavioral ways (School Violence, 2000).

Ways to avoid dating violence include: communicating bluntly, developing assertive behavior, avoiding dangerous situations, being in control of yourself, trusting your instincts and not falling victim to the myth of love at first sight (Milwaukee Women’s Center). Some signs of an abusive relationship are: push for quick involvement, controlling behavior, hypersensitivity, verbal abuse, cruelty to animals and children, and threats of violence (Dear Abby 1996). Hanging out in groups, agreeing with a bully, reporting the problem, and realizing there isn’t always a reason for mistreatment are some ways to deal with bullying behaviors (Sullivan, 2004). Having a sense of humor, using eye contact, standing up straight, and walking away are good ways to deal with a bully (Donahue, 2004). Students were asked if bullies should be arrested. Fifty-One Percent of those polled said yes (Scholastic Scope, 2004). A bully has just made a comment. If you feel yourself getting angry, the first thing you should ask yourself is how true is that statement. Group intervention brings about the most positive results.

Assertiveness allows people to get their point across without inflicting harm. Assertive people are confident, proud, not afraid to say how they feel, good at resisting peer pressure, generous with compliments, and respectful. People, who are assertive, have good communication skills. Four things that increase assertiveness are: confident body language, being a good listener, and respecting yourself and others (About Assertiveness, 2000). Teenagers, who are assertive, have stable self esteem and accept their limitations (Raudsepp, 2003).

Friendship and compassion is what a journalist for Quill magazine feels were lacking in Littleton. A “spontaneous act of leadership resembled grace, the expression of compassion and invitation at those times we anticipate the worst-isolation, social exile”(Bugeja, 1999, p27). Jim in Bold, a video, was released to nearly two-dozen film festivals and used for educational purposes in thirty-five high schools and colleges. The film depicts hate crimes across the country (Neff 2004).

Two student empowerment approaches are peer mediation and communicating in writing to the harasser. Peer mediation allows the victim to face the bully. Writing a letter allows the victim to deal with an issue in a one sided way. Sometimes when a teenager tells an adult of an incident, they ask the adult not to tell anyone. The adult assumes that they can do nothing else for the teenager due to confidentiality. Title 9 states that if a school official is notified of harassment, something has to be done to remedy the situation. Title 9 has been misused for language purification purposes. Title nine makes the acts of bullying against a victim punishable in a court of law. Sometimes censorship is used to develop a dress code only eliminates the external elements from the face of teenage culture(Stein, 1999). I believe that adding a mandatory class, for high school students, which covers important issues of teenage life, would do more in the long run then the censored and limited Health Classes seem to do. I don’t feel high school health courses go far enough to teach our teenagers about the problems they may have to deal with.

In Minnesota, prosecutor James Backstrom, feels school bullies should go to jail. All six juvenile judges of Dakota County in Minnesota agree but one problem with such a policy is that bullying measures are tracked in a category with juvenile assault. A public health department’s supervisor has doubts whether a night in jail will actually change a bully. Past penalties have included community service, writing apologies to the victims, and counseling. “Even if most bullies manage to avoid incarceration, the hope is that by dangling a very public threat of jail time, the court will scare aggressors straight” (Simon, 2002).

Alternative students have joined together with straight students to form an alliance “to provide . . . peer support, seek information about issues related to sexual orientation and gender identity, and ensure that schools respect their rights” (Hatred in the Hallways, 2001, p110). Even though gay/straight alliances in a high school setting may be helpful to build understanding among the teens, most of the teens would assume that participants are entirely alternative. This assumption would lead to further harassment of those allied with alternative students. In Orange County, California, an alliance was set up in a high school. In a state said to condone gay marriage, parents were complaining. In Utah, the school board passed a policy that student groups or organizations “not directly related to the curriculum” could not “organize or meet on school property” (Hatred in the Hallways, 2001, p112). This was the reaction to a student formed alliance in Salt Lake City.

Concluding Studies and Correlations.

The study, Cooperativeness and Bully/Victim Problems Among Australian School Children (1997), was run twice. The studies incorporate children in secondary schools in either middle class areas or lower class areas. Bullies and their victims share low levels of cooperativeness. One out of five was bullied a minimum of once a week. Training in assertiveness skills is suggested for victims and non-physical sanctions is suggested for bullies. Attitudes and behaviors demonstrating cooperativeness are suggested for classrooms. Cooperativeness is “acting together in a coordinated way, at work, leisure or in social relationships, in pursuit of shared goals, the enjoyment of joint activity, or simply furthering the relationship” (Rigby & Cox, 1997, p358). Cooperativeness leads to more opportunities for friendship. The dependent variable was modified for juveniles. Trial two found that when teenagers are happier, they tend to have more friends and higher self-esteem. Girls are more likely to be cooperative as indicated by both trials. Though youth is the best predictor of victimization, being an uncooperative boy also plays a role in risk. “(I)ncreasing the capacity and motivation of children to cooperate may lead to a reduction in school bullying” (Rigby & Cox, 1997, p366).

My second study is The Relationship of Peer Victimization to Social Anxiety and Loneliness in Adolescence (2003). Is there a relationship between victimization, social anxiety and loneliness in teenagers? The participants numbered 383, 9th and 10th graders of the Northeast USA in private city schools. Participants were mainly middle class. Bad treatment from peers affects loneliness. Prosocial behaviors decrease the amount of loneliness a teenager suffers. More study is needed. Victimization can lead to social avoidance. While some teenagers experience social anxiety and loneliness due to victimization, others do not. Teenagers are less likely to be targeted if they are in prosocial relationships. Sometimes teenagers feel lonely even if they are well supported by others.

Study three is entitled Adult Recognition of School Bullying Situations (2001). I believe this study is relevant to the paper due to adults in schools being called bystanders and witnesses. The study defines bullying as “repeated harming of another through words or physical attack on school ground or on the way to or from school. . . . The bully is either physically stronger or more verbally or socially skilled than the victim. An individual or group” (Hazler, Miller, Carney & Green; 2001, p134) may be involved in bullying behaviors. Two Hundred Fifty-One educators and counselors participated in the study. The dependent variable is a set of 21 scenarios, of varying difficulty, which were presented to each participant. It was found that physical threats or abuse were taken more seriously than verbal, social or emotional abuse. The study proves that bullying is not generally a “problem of male physical dominance.” Participants failed to realize “the importance of continuing low level abuse” (Hazler, Miller, Carney & Green; 2001, p143) and felt other types needed immediate resolution. In not dealing with low-level abuse, the situation tends to get worse for the teenager over time.

Is there a link between bullying and sexual harassment? The answer to this question is a double standard. If the persecution is boy-to-girl, it is often considered harassment. But, if same sex is involved, or girl-to-boy actions are found, it is often considered bullying. Under Title 9, “bullying has many parallels to sexual harassment” (Stein, 1999, p62). Can teenagers tell the difference between teasing, harassment, and bullying? I hope so.

The relationship between bully and victim is one of master and slave. Bullies are very needy people. The victim is necessary to the bully’s sense of control and power. Unreasonable demands are made. Rules are never broken. If a victim acts contrary, threats of rejection, physical harm, and self-harm are made by the bully. The bully is looking for sympathy or to reestablish control. Mind games are used to establish control over a variety of areas, such as; money, sexual contact, friendships, and family time (Middelton-Moz & Zawaski, 2002).

Is bullying violence? “(B)ullying has the potential of becoming a more severe form of violence” (Donahue, 2004, p16). Violence is what happens when the victim looses control. An example of this is Littleton, CO. Violence is bullying that is out of control. Some initiations and hazings done in “fun” are perfect examples of this. School violence often begins with bullying.

The teenager as well as their issues, and the high school environment are key areas that demonstrate the role Sociocultural Theory plays in this phenomenon. Epigenetic Theory also emphasizes the effect of environment on biology. Erickson’s stage theory may also link the teenage environment with crises of the age. In knowing the outcomes of bullying, we should learn that early intervention is the best avenue to take in solving the problem.


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