Thank you for making this critical observation of bullying. I agree with you that while bullying has adverse impacts on the victims, observers suffer severe implications too. Zastrow, Kirst-Ashman & Hessenauer (2019) explains that adolescents have a strong herd drive, and peer group system influences their development. Lack of peer grouping, which may arise from bullying or by standing a bullying situation, risks adolescents’ antisocial behaviors. Jenkins, Demaray & Tennant (2017) explain that in the theory of executive functioning and social competence, an adolescent is socially incapacitated, leading to low self-esteem. Depending on how a victim and witness of bullying perceive and encode the situation, they may end up socially isolated, with poor immunity and complaints of unknown medical causes, as a means of conflict or bullying avoidance. Other studies have shown that bullying leads to biological and cognitive vulnerabilities or social hopelessness (Swearer & Hymel, 2015).
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Besides, I am excited that you mentioned social workers coming up with an antibullying taskforce. It is what I consider as advocacy. A social worker mobilizes the school and the community to create awareness of the laws and the ramifications of bullying. They may also collaborate with schools to introduce antibullying themes in early education, citing a holistic understanding of spiritual development (Benavides, 2014). I also think it is critical to regulating the use of social media through phone policies in school. That would require the social worker to have adequate proficiency in communication skills and appealing strategies. They would also need resilience to avoid victimization and diligence to note indicators of bullying.
Benavides, L. (2014). Spiritual Journey from Childhood to Adolescence: Pathways to Strength and Healing. Journal Of Religion & Spirituality In Social Work: Social Thought, 33(3-4), 201-217. doi: 10.1080/15426432.2014.930628
Jenkins, L., Demaray, M., & Tennant, J. (2017). Social, Emotional, and Cognitive Factors Associated With Bullying. School Psychology Review, 46(1), 42-64. doi: 10.17105/spr46-1.42-64
Swearer, S., & Hymel, S. (2015). Understanding the psychology of bullying: Moving toward a social-ecological diathesis–stress model. American Psychologist, 70(4), 344-353. doi: 10.1037/a0038929
Zastrow, C., Kirst-Ashman, K., & Hessenauer, S. (2019). Understanding human behavior and the social environment (11th ed.). Boston: Cengage Learning.