As a student, have you ever been humiliated by your fellow students or given less attention because they feel you are not up to standard? Have you ever felt like your fellow students don't like and appreciate you for who you are and it's affecting your studies? If you have experienced this, then know that you are never alone.

Presently in Nigeria, research shows that bullying is prevalent and the rate seems to be increasing every year. Both primary schools and secondary schools are guilty of the act of bullying and it is having mental health problems on its victims.

Unfortunately, even children of about 4 years are made to pass through this mental torture, thus, having a negative effect on their education and behaviour in general.

No doubt, the Nigerian government and other relevant agencies are creating awareness to make sure the menace of bullying stop among students. Nevertheless, it seems that bullying and violence have come to stay and there were recent cases of bullying in Nigerian schools which led to the death of certain students.

Suffice to say that bullying just doesn't stop in a school environment, it is also common in workplaces and even in homes.

The best way to help curtail bullying in secondary school or any level of education is to keep sensitizing the students of the different types of bullying. Students should also know the implications of tyranny and how they can avoid it as much possible as they can.

Therefore, in this article, we shall be looking at the different types of bullying that are common in both public and private schools in Nigeria.

Read on how to deal with bullying in Nigerian schools.

Bullying in Schools
A primary school girl holding a placard about bullying | Photo Credit: RODNAE Productions from Pexels
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What is Bullying?

Honestly, bullying is not an interesting subject to be discussed because it has caused mental health issues to many students. Nevertheless, it is expedient that we talk about it. Parents also have roles to play in this because they need to make their children aware of it and give their children some comebacks for bullies.

In a simple term, bullying refers to an act of intimidating, coercing, hurting or harming a person that is considered weaker or vulnerable. Bullying can either be physical or social. What is the essence of bullying among students? Simply to make the victims feel awful and to make the bully feel superior or better.

Now, the annoying thing about bullying is that it is contagious, meaning that the victims would want to retaliate against other students. This menace has sprung up a lot of miscreants in both primary schools and secondary schools around the country.

Bullies can either be a male or a female, of any age group, any tribe, or any social status. The worse part is that most of us are aware of these bullies and may even have one as a close associate.

To bring to a halt the victimization of students in school, an awareness campaign needs to be organized. Teachers, parents, the government, and the public need to come together to put an end to the physical and social abuses in most education centers.

Below are some of the symptoms most pupils and students show whenever they go through physical or social torture from their peer group:

  • Isolating from others
  • Suicidal thoughts
  • Poor appetite for food
  • Depression
  • Low self-esteem
  • Anxiety
  • Having difficulty sleeping because of so many thoughts going through the mind
  • Poor performance in education

The worse thing is that if any person is going through the effect of bullying, it takes quite some time to heal from it completely. In some cases, some students hardly overcome the mental effect, thus, affecting them throughout their lifetime.

Therefore, it is the duty of teachers and parents to talk to a child about what it means to be bullied and some of the comebacks for bullies. The rate of bullying among peer groups is high and now is the right time to stop school bullying among students.

What Are The Types Of Bullying That Are Common In Nigerian Schools?

Even though a school is a place of study and to improve your education status, unfortunately, other vices are found in a school. As par bullying, it can come in different forms. We shall be looking at the different types of bullying that are common in schools in Nigeria. Check out some common bullying in Nigerian schools below:

Physical Bullying

To most people, this is the only form of bullying they are aware of. This is because it can be easily spotted and it involves abusing a person via physical intimidation. It is a common occurrence in children to want to physically bully a person, and physical bullying involves using physical power or violence to dominate a victim

To spot physical bullies in a school is not difficult because they tend to be big and have physical strength than their peer group.

Physical bullying can come in any of the following forms below:

  • Slapping
  • Ceasing one's school item
  • Kicking
  • Biting
  • Punching
  • Threatening
  • Pulling of hair

Physical bullying not only has physical effects on a child or children but also leaves a child emotionally down. This can affect the study rate of the child and affects his/her education journey as a whole.

Comebacks for Bullies
A guy physically bullying his classmate | Photo Credit: A primary school girl holding a placard about bullying | Photo Credit: RODNAE Productions from Pexels

Verbal Bullying

Unlike physical bullying, most teachers in schools may not notice verbal bullying among students. However, verbal abuses have both physical and mental health effects on its victims. You would find verbal bullying in places like a primary school where children are fond of calling themselves awful names or spreading rumours.

Name-calling can be demoralizing and many bullies use this weapon to have the upper hand over their victims. These bullies target a victim's weak points and try to belittle the victim to make him/her feel unloved or worthless.

Emotional Bullying

This is yet another subtle and harmful type of bullying that almost goes unnoticed by parents and teachers. It is almost unnoticed because it involves the manipulation of the mind of a child, thus, making the child not take part in activities with his/her peer group.

Emotional intimidation can affect the social aspect of a child, thereby leading to depression, sadness, and low self-esteem. Being emotionally aggressive involves making a person look less important and making the victims feel less of themselves.

Most suicidal cases among primary school and secondary school students in Nigeria were a result of emotional bullying.

Sexual Bullying

Sexual bullying is another form of intimidation that involves demeaning comments or abnormal physical contact. Although sexual bullying is very common among girls, the guys are not left out of it.

For example, it is a common thing in Nigeria to call a guy a "woman-wrapper". This could be because the guy always associates with females or they think he's too weak to be called a man.

For a secondary school girl developing breasts at a tender age, some bullies can make a mockery of that and make the girl feel awful about herself. For a better understanding, the below are ways to spot sexual bullying:

  • Touching of the private part without permission
  • Unacceptable comments
  • Making a guy feel less of a man
  • Indecent gestures that leave one embarrassed

Sexual intimidation is common bullying in secondary school especially when teens are transitioning from childhood to adulthood (the puberty stage). At this point, students tend to be insecure and are vulnerable to being bullied.

It is noteworthy to also state that sexual intimidation can transcend to sexual abuse if efforts are not put by parents and teachers to arrest the situation on time.

Nigerian School Bullying
A girl feeling depressed after being sexually bullied | Photo Credit: RODNAE Productions from Pexels

Cyberbullying

Cyberbullying is a very common phenomenon in Nigeria today as many people are using the internet to bully people. No doubt, technology has brought a lot for us - you can use it for your studies or find relevant information about your education.

However, it has also become a platform where people bully others online. For example, you see some of the major tribes in Nigeria demeaning other minority groups and making them feel less important.

Both primary and secondary school students now have access to the internet and are seeing what's happening in the online world. These students tend to replicate the online bullying in school by calling out the minority groups and letting them know how less important they are.

Social media platforms such as Twitter, Instagram, and Facebook are places where cyberbullying thrives. Teachers and parents have to control the access a child has to the internet. The victims of cyberbullying are adults and children.

That means the victimization of cyberbullying is for all, and it usually leads to major mental health problems.

Tribal Bullying

Just as mentioned in cyberbullying, tribal bullying means the victimization of a child or an adult just because you think the person's tribe is less important.

A report shows that tribal bullying in Nigeria is getting high, thus, creating division among different tribes in the country. Until we realize that all tribes are important, it will keep threatening the peace of Nigeria.

How To Help Students Deal With Bullying In Nigerian Schools?

The prevalence of violence and bullying in schools is alarming and it is the duty of parents, teachers, and the public to see an end to bullying. The physical symptoms and mental health symptoms of bullying are grievous and urgent help is needed by both primary school pupils and secondary school students.

Therefore, parents need to prepare their children for comebacks for bullies by sharing helpful tips to combat a bully. Below are some ways to solve the problem of bullying in secondary school or any level of education in Nigeria:

  • Let someone know what you are passing through: Being a victim of bullying can be tough. If you find yourself in such a situation, you should try to speak to someone about it. This person could be your teachers, parents, elder siblings, etc. When you do this, you feel a sense of relief and you will also get mature advice on how to go about the problem. Bullying is not a hidden thing anymore in Nigerian school society, so you shouldn't feel intimidated to discuss it.
  • There is nothing wrong with you: A bully will always want to create the impression that there's something wrong with you. That's not true! In most cases, most bullies are having hard times in life and would want to put the burden on others. You are not the problem and you shouldn't feel bad about yourself.
  • Look for healthy ways to make yourself happy: It is quite stressful to deal with bullies or aggressive people. Therefore, you should find ways of relieving yourself from any mental health problem by doing some fun activities like exercising, visiting friends, or watching movies. These activities will take your mind off any school bully

In summary, talking about the different types of bullying in schools would help parents and children prepare themselves against this aggressive behaviour. Violence or aggressive behaviour should not be tolerated in any Nigerian school and we must put an end to bullying in schools.

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Justin

A seasoned writer with a knack for various niches. As a physics graduate, I enjoy carrying out detailed research on a particular topic before drafting up an eye-catching and engaging article.