The Impact of Bullying on Gender Expression
Bullying is an unfortunate pervasive experience that can happen anywhere, from school hallways to social media platforms. Bullying often takes many forms and can specifically have a negative impact on gender expression. In this article, we’ll look at the various ways bullying can affect gender expression and what steps can be taken to curb it.
How Bullying Affects Gender Expression
Gender expression is the way a person chooses to present themselves to the world, either through clothing, appearance, mannerisms, and the like.
Bullying can have a particularly damaging effect on gender expression. It can prevent a person from expressing their gender in the way they wish. It can also cause a person to stay “in the closet” longer or lead to immense feelings of self-doubt and low self-esteem.
Here are some common ways bullying impacts gender expression:
- Intimidation: Bullying can cause a person to feel afraid or intimidated about expressing their gender. If a person fears ridicule or reprisal, it can lead to them staying quiet in regards to their gender and not expressing it in the way that they’d like.
- Body modifications: Bullying can also cause a person to change their body in ways they wouldn’t have done had they not been subject to bullying. This goes beyond just cosmetics like makeup or clothes, as some people seek out medical interventions to change their body because of bullying.
- Self-doubt: Bullying can cause immense self-doubt and insecurity that can lead to an individual changing their gender expression completely different than what they wanted to.
How to prevent bullying
Preventing bullying is no easy feat, but there are ways in which we can help stop it.
- Education: Educating students about gender expression, bullying, and how to treat others with respect is key to preventing bullying in the long run.
- Engagement: Gaining a deeper understanding of gender expression from those who are directly affected is important to create an understanding and respectful environment.
- Support: Immediate action must be taken when bullying occurs, with consistent follow-up and support for those who have been harassed.
- Leadership: Lead by example and set expectations of kindness and respect. Be a role model by standing up against discrimination and being tolerant of gender expression.
Bullying and its effects on gender expression can have serious, long-lasting consequences. It’s important to take steps to protect those who are most vulnerable and create an environment of acceptance and understanding. With the right education and support, we can help create a world where people feel safe to express themselves without fear of retribution.