Verbal Bullying And Its Effect on Kids


We have recently discussed what is bullying, and now it is time to break down specific types of bullying.  Today we are going to look specifically at Verbal Bullying And Its Effect.  While it may seem obvious, many people still don’t want to accept how many actions aimed at us from others are technically verbal bullying.  While most people may think of bullying as only a means to physically control another individual, mental and emotional control is fast becoming one of the more common ways a bully exudes their control. We will take a look today at what verbal bullying is and what happens as a result of this form of abuse.


Definition of Verbal Bullying:

  • Verbal Language used in an effort to insult or belittle another individual.

Examples of Verbal Bullying:

  • Teasing meant to emotionally tear down another person
  • Name calling
  • Using words as a means to control another individual
  • Threatening physical harm if victim doesn’t fall under bully’s control
  • Spreading untruths or rumors about the victim

Effects of Verbal Bullying:

  • Poor self-esteem.
  • Inability to tell truth from lies
  • Approval addiction formed out of a need to please another individual due to past bullying
  • Depression
  • Feelings of helplessness or that the victim has no choice but to obey their bully
  • Thoughts of suicide

When verbal bullying is consistent in a victims life, that person can easily be led to believe untruths about themselves.  Being told you are unworthy, unattractive, stupid or incapable of making others happy is an easy way a bully can control your actions.  By continually abusing a victims image of themselves, a bully creates a world where they are the authority and the only person to believe.  For many people (both children and adults) the authority figure in their life has created a mental image that makes them feel inferior to others around them.  By being subject to verbal bullying on a consistent basis, a victim will eventually be in a place the only thing they believe are the lies presented to them by their bully or abuser.

While physical damages can have lasting scars, verbal bullying and its effects are the ones that leave internal scars that we carry the rest of our lives.  A wound will heal and the scar will fade, but the emotional and mental pain will continue for years to come.  Verbal bullying is the most common form of bullying today, and the one that will likely have the most powerful effect on our children for years to come.

Find more information on prevention and consequences in our Stop Bullying Tips.

Can you think of any other ways verbal bullying can affect your children?

9 thoughts on “Verbal Bullying And Its Effect on Kids”

  1. Teaching a Rudyard Kipling poem- trying to make it relevant to students: Sticks and stones may break my bones, – at which point they chorused but words will never hurt me- no said I- sticks and stones may break my bones but words will break my heart.
    Silence. Then they agreed. Also helped them understand the poem!

  2. This was a very informative article to read. I wonder if we’ve all at some point in another have been a victim of very bullying. As an adult I can still remember hurtful things that I’ve overheard someone say or things that have been said to me.

  3. Very well said. Verbal bullying may not hurt you physically, but its effects are so much worse because you bring it with you until you get older.

  4. More people need to aware that verbal bullying is just as hurtful and can scar as much as physical bullying. Thanks for this post! ;)

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