Bullying seems to be rampant these days. Was it always this way? Or is it given additional life with the advent of the internet? Whatever the cause, teens are being bullied to death. And if it’s not death, they are being bullied into serious ilnesses. The problem with serious illnesses is that they are not always evident on the outside. They gnaw and eat away at the insides. This is where fear, anxiety and stress reside – on the inside. And so, while not all teens are bullied to death; many are dying on the inside.
What exactly does it mean to be dying on the inside? We all know but place yourself in the shoes of a teenager. It means the fear of actually going to school; the anxiety of not knowing when the bully will strike; or maybe they do know when they will strike; and the sheer stress of all this. Let’s take into account that the bullied does not even have to see the bully any more. They don’t even have to know the bully. The bully can be faceless, nameless and anonymous. This is thanks to the internet.
It is challenging enough being a teen. The world seems to be ever changing. Their bodies are changing too and just about everything seems to be shifting. And all this is compounded with being beaten, abused, teased, terrorized and ridiculed. The bullied is not sure why this is happening. He/she is just a teen trying to find his/her way in this world. And every time the bullying happens, the bullied cries, is sad, is despondent and loses faith in a good outcome, loses faith in the world. And this is another kind of death – a real death- because in the despondency the bullied loses a bit of who he/she really is. This is what it means to be dying inside. Because to lose faith in the world, in basic humanity, is really tragic.
There is more tragedy. There’s obviously something seriously wrong with someone who finds joy in inflicting hurt on someone else. The bully has a lack and is in need of something. And his/her answer is bullying. It fills the void. He/she is also trying to make his/her way in the world. We have all asked the question: what goes on inside the mind of a bully? Why do they do what they do? Can’t they see the hurt that they are causing? Only the bully can adequately answer these questions. It is possible that the bully is also despondent and have no faith in the world or basic humanity. The one thing that seems certain is that just like the bullied, the bully is also dying inside.