Bullying and Suicide Information
by Kevin Caruso
Bullying is an extremely serious problem in
schools and can result in the victims becoming depressed and suicidal, and even taking their own lives.
Bullying occurs for many reasons.
- Feel the need to hurt others because it makes them feel powerful.
- Want to get as much attention as possible.
- Feel that they can bully because nobody will stop them.
- Feel the need to control others.
- Believe they are justified in their bullying because others have hurt them.
- Be so unhappy that they want to bring others down to their level.
- Have no conscience at all and feel no remorse for what they do.
(Most criminals do not feel remorse.)
- Think that it is "cool" to be a bully.
Keep in mind that all bullies are cowards.
What can be done?
Talk with you children every day about what is going on at school.
Ask them if anyone is bullying them or bothering them in any way.
Let them know that they need to tell you immediately if they are
If they ever tell you that they are being bullied, and you
determine that the bullying is of a minor nature and no
physical contact has occurred, then you should get in contact
with the administrators and teachers at the school immediatedly.
Go to the school and raise your concerns--make sure immediate action
is taken. And get specifics with respect to what will
be done. Do not leave until you are satisfied.
If the bullying was serious, or if there was a physical assault
of any kind, call the police immediately. Then contact
the school administration and demand immediate action.
Keep the lines of communication open with your children.
Again, ask them on a regular basis if anyone is mistreating
them at school. And always let your children know that
they can talk with you at any time about bullying.
Also, look at your children carefully for bruises, scratches, etc.
If you see any, ask about them. And if they are wearing long
sleeve shirts, jackets, turtle necks, etc (especially during warm
weather) that may be hiding bruises, ask them why they
are wearing the clothing. Ask them straight out if they
are being bullied or hit at school and if they are trying to
cover any bruises.
And whenever a serious case of bullying occurs, you should (in
addition to visiting with the principal),
send certified letters with a return receipt to the principal
of the school, school board members, and the superintendant.
This will demonstrate your seriousness, and
will create a paper trail that you can use if the bullying does not
stop. Make sure that you date the letters and inform everyone
what happened and what needs
to be done. Be detailed. Write down the full names of
all of the bullies, what they did, and the
date the incident occurred.
Request a written response for all of the letters,
and ask for a complete list of all actions that will be taken. If you do
not receive responses, keep writing. Or transfer
your children to another school. Be proactive.
Stop any bullying problem immediately, before
it becomes a big problem. If anyone thinks that you are
"overreacting," then they are ignorant. Do not
let their ignoarance cause problems for your children.
Be persistent. And take whatever actions you
need to take to protect your children.
Again, with any serious bullying, call the police
You also want to document everything that happens.
Write copious notes about
every aspect of the bullying. If there are bruises
or injuries, take pictures. Use a notebook to write
down any doctors visits, calls to the school, visits
to the school, letters sent, and also all responses
that you receive.
Put everything in file folders and keep them handy.
Again, document everything. Actions, dates, times, locations,
responses, etc. Write down everything.
Also, do not hesitate to transfer your children to another
school. Do not think that somehow they "win"
if you transfer your children. You need to do what
is necessary to protect your children. Do not think
in terms of "winning' or "losing," just think about
the safety of your children, and do whatever you
need to do to ensure their safety.
Again, take whatever action you need to take to protect your children.
Any administrator or teacher that does not take bullying seriously
is ignorant and incompetent. Do not let their ignorance
and incompetence endanger your children.
In any dangerous situation, keep your children at home. Do
not let them go to school until you are 100% sure that
they will be safe. You cannot be 99% sure--you must be 100%
sure. When in doubt, err on the side of caution and keep
Also, make sure that your children get counseling if they
are the victims of bullying. Bullying can lead to depression and
to suicide, so take actions to safeguard their psychological
And, again, if you do not believe that it is safe for your children
to go to school, do not let them go. Period.
---Do not let your children go to school if it is not safe
for them to do so---
Students who are being bullied:
If you are being bullied, you need to remember that all bullies
are cowards. So anyone
who is bullying you is a coward. Period.
But you must also understand that bullying can be very dangerous
in at least two ways. First, you can get hurt physically, or
in a worst case scenario, killed. And second, you can get hurt
psychologically. Do not underestimate how damaging psychological
trauma can be. If someone hurts you emotionally, you can become
depressed. That means that you have a chemical imbalance in your
brain. And when that happens, you will be at risk for dying by suicide.
I do not want to scare you. I just want to be honest with you and
warn you how very serious bullying is. Unfortunately, many
young people have ended their own lives because they could
not face the bullying any longer.
So don't let that happen to you.
So what should you do if you are being bullied?
Immediately go to the principal and your teachers and tell them what
is happening. You should also call your parents from school and
let them know what is happening.
If you have been assaulted, or the situation is serious, call the police immediately.
Do not put up with any bullying at all. It is always wrong.
It is oftentimes against the law, and it should always be
against school rules.
Remember that bullies are cowards. And all cowards do not want
to be confronted. So, if you take action against
them, they will be confronted by authorities, and show themselves
to be the true cowards that they are.
Whenever you feel in danger, you need to talk to the principal
and your teachers. You should always feel safe at school.
And I mean always.
And if the bullying is bad enough, you can consider going to another school.
Some bullies are such cowards, that they just won't stop. So if you
need to transfer to another school, then you should do so.
And always, always, always tell your parents when someone bullies you.
They need to know, and they need to know immediately.
So, speak up. And don't ever let anyone hurt you physically or emotionally.
No one has a right to do that.
And if you do not feel safe going to school. Don't go.
---Never go to school if you are in danger. Stay home---
And always remember that a bully is a coward.
But you are a special person.
And a great person.
Teachers and Administrators:
School policies should be in place for how to deal with bullies.
If you do not have school policies for dealing with
bullies, then you need to implement those
Also, the issue of bullying needs to be raised regularly
at faculty meetings.
There should be zero tolerance for bullying, and immediate
action always needs to be taken when bullying occurs.
A proactive approach needs to be taken so students will be comfortable
with approaching teachers and administrators when they are bullied.
And all students who witness bullying should be encouraged to come forward
and tell teachers immediately.
Whenever bullying occurs, all of the parents of the students involved need to be contacted immediately and informed
what happened and what actions will be taken.
And any time serious bullying or violence occurs, the police need
to be called immediately.
Any bullies who do not stop bullying should be suspended or expelled.
The emphasis of the zero-tolerance-for-bullying polices needs to be on the safety of the
students. Not the "rights" of a cruel, dangerous bully. Therefore, reasons for suspension
and expulsion need to be clearly described
in the school policies.
Every student should be able to go to school and feel safe. Every day.
All of the time.
So always take immediate and thorough action when bullying occurs.
Too many children have become depressed or died by suicide because of bullying.
Don't let that happen at your school.
Do everything you can to prevent bullying. And if it does happen, take quick
action to stop it.
It is your responsibility to ensure the safety of every student.
If you or someone you know is suicidal, please go to the Home Page of this website for immediate help.
I love you.