By Amber Keck, Children’s Librarian
October 1st marks the beginning of National Bullying Prevention Month. This is a time to raise awareness about bullying and to do our part to prevent the emotional and physical suffering that bullying causes.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 28% of students in grades 6-12 have experienced bullying, including name calling, teasing, pushing and threatening. While we usually focus on the problems of bullying for children and teens, bullying can happen at home or in the workplace during the adult years, too.
Research shows that consistent bullying leads to feelings of isolation and despair, as well as depression and anxiety, which can contribute to suicidal behavior.
It can be difficult to decide when and how to seek help. With so many resources available, help is closer than you might think.
- If you or someone you know is feeling hopeless and thinking of suicide, call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline at (800) 273-8255.
- If a child is being bullied at school, contact the teacher, counselor, principal or superintendent.
- If you or someone you know is seeking professional help to recover from acts of bullying, visit Psychology Today to find an appropriate therapist for your needs.
This month, let’s do a little more to recognize bullying and help those who are suffering. Discuss bullying with your children and reach out to people who may need your help. Here are some recommended fiction and non-fiction resources at Manhattan Public Library regarding bullying:
- Llama Llama and the Bully Goat by Anna Dewdney (recommended for preschoolers)
- Bully by Patricia Polacco (recommended for preschoolers and elementary ages)
- Thirteen Reasons Why by Jay Asher (recommended for teens and older)
- Dear Bully: Seventy Authors Tell Their Stories edited by Megan Kelley Hall (recommended for teens and older)
- Little Girls Can Be Mean: Four Steps to Bully-Proof Girls in the Early Grades by Michelle Anthony
- Sticks and Stones: Defeating the Culture of Bullying and Rediscovering the Power of Character and Empathy by Emily Bazelon
- 8 Keys to End Bullying: Strategies for Parents and Schools by Signe Whitson