If you speak with a bullied child she will tell you this first and you can see it in her deportment. She often concludes that something is wrong with her and she feels like she is the only person in the world that this is happening to. Some feel embarrassed that it is happening to them.
As the bullying continues, some children develop somatic complaints. They have frequent unexplained headaches or stomach aches often spending part of each day at the school nurses office. They also report feeling lonely.
The victims of bullying become untouchables because classmates that befriend them or support them may become victims by association. I met a little boy about five years ago in a group setting that told me his feelings and I have never forgotten his face or his words."Why do they all hate me, what have I done?"
Outwardly, I could not understand why his classmates shunned and taunted him. I wanted to tell him something to make him feel better. Later as I thought of him, I knew how inadequate and hollow my words were. I had told him to keep believing in himself no matter what, and others will come to believe in him, too.
Instead, I should have told him how wrong his classmates were in mistreating him. I should have sought out an adult who might have come to his aid. As adults, we can make a difference by not over looking bullying, whenever it happens.
Remember, all kids count.
Reach the writer at Hurlburt@wildblue.net