By James Baratta
Did you know that the third leading cause of death among tweens and teens is suicide due to bullying? Would it make a difference in your heart if you saw the faces of these victims? The faces of lives just beginning. The pain that they had experienced shrouded their minds from what “could have been.” These face, these people escaped their own lives to abandon the incessant pain forced upon them by others. These “others”, are bullies.
Have you ever heard of a mean girl? No, not the movie, the syndrome. This pandemic is real and often performed under the radar of superiors such as parents and teachers.
Let’s talk about parents…
It actually begins with the parents. Why is it that when a girl is bullying another girl, the parent of the bully is confronted by the victim’s mother. This mother becomes defensive and often goes into denial mode, even though they were caught in their wrongdoing. For example, a mother is driving her daughter and her friends to the movies; she overhears them gossiping about a girl who she knows is a kind person, but the mother does not utter a word about why it is wrong to speak like this about someone who has done nothing wrong. Some parents, are ignorant and unintentionally encourage their children to gossip. Mothers are also involved in the bullying itself when they make comments on that former friend of their daughter. In other words, the mother gossips with her daughter and/or her daughter’s friends. This encourages judging and laughing at flaws.
Parents aren’t the only people who encourage girls (tweens and teens). Have you ever seen reality TV or heard of it? If not the first thing, I am positive of the second. These shows involve an absurd amount of drama and influence young girls to gossip. An example of a show that adults do not act as adults is The Housewives Series. This series is about upper middle class women who fight and gossip about each other. In almost every episode there is drama, secrets and violence. These women are negative role models and these women of society influence young girls.
There are two types of “mean girls”. The tiger and the snake. The tiger is a girl who is physically aggressive and fiery in a way. It satisfies her to see the victim in fear of her presence. She laughs when her jagged teeth sink into her victim’s mind and obstruct the foundations of her confidence and well-being.
The snake slithers under the low lying grass of the rainforest and strikes you when you least expect it. As she slowly and methodically sinks her fangs into each girl, slowly poisoning them with slanderous remarks that spread around school like a plague in a populated city. This poison causes the victim to have negative thoughts about herself as a person. This then leads to the victim to become isolated and other students believing the rumors spread by the snake’s poisonous bite. The snake is the most typical of the two. Bullies in the present day don’t force you to give up your lunch money or or call you “nerd” anymore. Vile words have grown to be commonly used by bullies and the internet has been heavily utilized by these bullies to drain a person of their confidence.
This is a topic that could be talked about for eternity, this article is only touching on the true aspects and experiences of mean girl syndrome. Before you finish reading, keep this in mind: words do hurt, cliques kill, and we all feel. Emotion is something all humans have. Whether it is suppressed or exaggerated, it still exists. Emotion is shaped as if it is a piece of marble becoming a statue. As time proceeds, this statue takes shape as a person who has experienced negative and positive aspects of life. We can protect this statue from being chipped away by taking a stand and teaching others, emulating goodness, kindness, compassion, acceptance, empathy, and awareness.