Giving a Voice to the Silence offers positive angles to the issue that faces those with mental illness. Living with Schizo-Affective Disorder and being able to share my experiences with others, is the best way I know how to pay it forward. Life can be difficult, my goal is to bring a bit of hope to a place where many feel there is none.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

The Effect of Bullying

Researchers have discovered a correlation between bullying and depression and anxiety in kids. In a study with identical twins, it was discovered that when one twin was bullied between the ages of 7 and 9, and the other was not, the bullied twin was more likely to keep problems to themselves, internalizing them leading to symptoms of depression – as opposed to acting out as some may expect.

Though the correlation is there between bullying and depression, there is still the question as to if it is solely bullying that is causing the internal issues? Family dynamics, living conditions or already existing mental health issues – often times attract bullies to them and can increase the risks of future depression.

While the discoveries of the effects of bulling are evident, the focus needs to go with stopping the bullying and helping those who have been bullied. This does not affect only one person.

A school in California has taken a unique approach to teaching kids empathy with the help of a baby. Will the help? It may be too soon to tell, but the fact that the effort is being made says a lot. We are tired of the tragedy that is all too often the result of bullying. The kids are tired of living in fear; parents are tired of sending their kids to school praying they will return home. The cycle continues and it needs to be broken. It is unfortunate, as I have said before, that change comes after tragedy.