Issues Related to Bullying
Unfortunately, bullying continues to be an all-too-common occurrence in schools, online, and sometimes workplaces, and can have a lasting impact for the victim or survivor. Enduring bullying can affect a person’s mental health – whether they are a child or an adult. Repeated intimidation can really wear a person down and impact all areas of life.
Symptoms & signs that your child is experiencing bullying
- Physical marks (bruising, scratches, cuts, etc.)
- Missing or damaged personal items (school supplies, money, personal possessions, etc.)
- Fear of attending school or other events where the bully may be present
- Withdrawing from other people or everyday life
- Misplaced aggression towards other people or family pets
- Openly or secretly planning revenge
- Attempting to overhaul their looks or life to blend in
- Avoiding situations or habits to avoid the bully
- Doing poorly in school
- Frequent headaches stomach aches or other physical complaints
- Changes in appetite
- Sleeping issues
When is it time to get help?
If you suspect your child is being bullied, you should have a conversation with them to see how things are going at school, or on the team, or in the band, etc. Ask them if they are getting along with all their friends, both in person at school and online. Talk with their teachers and school staff if necessary. Although school authorities can take steps to stop the bullying once it has started, the psychological scars can linger long after the abuse occurred and if your child is experiencing the emotional fallout from bullying, it’s time to seek help.
Treatment methods for dealing with the stress from bullying
How their experience with bullying has impacted them will determine the best therapy method. For example, if they are experiencing anxiety, then treatments for anxiety will be best. The therapist will talk with them, then determine the best treatment method for their unique circumstance. Treatments may include:
- Cognitive Behavioural Therapy (CBT) is an evidence-based approach to treatment that focuses on how people’s thoughts, emotions, and beliefs influence their behaviour and how they perceive themselves.
- Client centered therapy (Rogerian therapy). Developed by Carl Rogers, this focus of therapy views the therapeutic process and progress as ultimately based on the accomplishments of the client and only psychologically aided by the therapist.
- Eye Movement Desensitization Reprocessing Therapy (EMDR) is defined by EMDR Canada as an integrative psychotherapy approach that has been extensively researched and proven effective for the treatment of trauma and many other mental health problems that utilized bilateral eye stimulation or somatic responding.
- Solution focused therapy views people as inherently strong and resilient, and capable of creating change and discovering solutions to their everyday problems.
- Play therapy refers to a large number of treatment methods, all of which make use of one or more of the natural benefits of play, using toys, dolls, games, etc. Play allows children a safe psychological distance from their problems and allows them to express their true thought and feelings in ways best suited to their developmental level.
Unfortunately, bullying is not something that is only experienced by children. Adults also bully and are victims of bullying in the workplace, in relationships, and in families. Workplace bullying, harassment, and discrimination is illegal in Alberta. This is great news to stop bullying and improve psychological wellness in the workplace, but sometimes the damage is already done by time it’s realized for what it is.
Symptoms in adults are similar to those experienced in children – low self-esteem, anxiety, depression, changes in appetite, sleep disturbances, poor work performance, withdrawal from others, misplaced aggression, etc.
Adults will benefit by seeing a therapist to deal with the trauma of bullying.
Learn more about workplace bullying, harassment, and violence here.
Learn more about abuse here.
What will I get out of treatment with Insight Psychological?
Whether you or someone you love are currently being bullied or have been bullied in the past with lasting psychological effects, a trained therapist can help you explore options to ease the burden, gain confidence, and move forward from this traumatic experience.
NOTE: Insight can also provide treatment for children, youth, or adults who bully.
Please call us today to schedule an appointment with one of our therapists at one of our Alberta locations.