Silence, a sound some call peaceful and others call torture. There are very real consequences for being a silent bystander of bullying. This article dives into the reality of cyber bullying and its effects.
I've personally endured a lot of bullying in my time. A few months ago I had an experience with an old friend that came back to haunt my social media feeds. She posted some pretty mean and nasty stuff about me on her Facebook wall. I am still to this appalled at the fact that out of all of my friends who where connected to her account only one dared to stand up and tell me this.
My friends wouldn't say anything about her attacking post because they where afraid of her doing the same thing to them. However, remaining in silence does a lot more damage than you may realize. In the act of my friends choosing not to say anything about the situation, I felt abandoned. Because they remained quiet it reinforced that what my bully did was completely acceptable.
A few days latter my bully had become so determined to cause chaos in my life that she dragged her friends into the mess and enlisted them in an army of bombarding viscous text messages. If I hadn't told anyone, the situation could have had far reaching consequences. Many teens and young adults end up in situations like I did and they can't take it anymore resulting in severe depression or even suicide.
I asked myself in the dark pain of the night why no one was speaking up against my bully, I did nothing to deserve what was happening. Yet, the messages kept coming and I kept drowning. I eventually resorted to the only thing I knew how to do to stop the nasty messages. I changed my phone number on a harassment policy through my cell phone provider.
Staying silent is deadly, if you witness bullying, dare to be the hero who takes a stand.