Bullying is an activity that takes different forms. Regardless of whether it is getting shoved on the playground or beaten up in the classroom by a teacher or fellow student, it can be stated as bullying. Unfortunately, this becomes part of the life of many children. Even though, some argue it to be an unpleasant rite of passage, many others feel it otherwise. Even though, some children bounce back on the person bullying them, there are also stories of bullying gone too far. A record shows that children, who are victims of this type of activity, mostly face anxiety issues in the future.
American Journal of Psychiatry:
A recent study conducted by the American Journal of Psychiatry, provides more evidence of children, who have not bounced back when they were bullied. As they have not bounced back, these children were greatly affected in their relationship, health and even economic status in the future, particularly when they reach their middle age, they are known to face anxiety issues.
The researchers gathered a data from the United Kingdom’s National Child Development Study about 18000 people, who were born during the same week in the year 1958. These children were followed up at the ages of seven, eleven and at regular intervals until they reached 50 years. During the first two age groups (7 and 11 years), their parents were asked whether their kids were bullied earlier or whether they were bullied frequently or rarely. Even though, it is possible that children would have been bullied without the knowledge of their parents, reports of bullying victimization from mothers and kids have shown to be closely associated with behavioral and emotional problems.
Again at 23 and 50 years, the participants completed measures of general health and psychological distress and at 45 years, they were assessed for anxiety issues and depressive disorders. At the age of 50, they were also interviewed to collect details about the level of education they achieved in their life, employment status, income and about their relationships to find whether they are single or partnered and how often they meet their friends.
The results: As per the study, 15 percent of the children were frequently bullied in their life, while 28 percent of them were occasionally bullied. Also, it was found that this act was done more against male children as compared to female children. Also, it was found that the harassment was commonly done on children, whose parents were less involved and has some sort of manual occupation.
Ill effect of both frequent and occasional bullying:
The harassment shown to children at their young age, regardless of whether they are frequently or occasionally harassed, they show a poor health later in their lives. At the age of 23 and 50, they are more psychologically distressed and at the age of 45, most of them face suicidal thoughts and they are at the higher risk of depression too at this age. Also, it was found that they have a poor cognitive functioning at the age of 50.
In short, experts say that even though, there might be other reasons behind anxiety issues in people, bullying in childhood is known to play a major role in negative outcomes at the older age.