Autism & Bullying

See also:    Abuse   

Internet Resources

Bullying behaviors can be grouped into the following categories: threat to professional status, threat to personal standing, isolation, excessive overwork, destabilization,
Helen Cowie
The Platinum Rule is: Do unto others as they would have you do unto them. Essentially, treat people how THEY want to be treated, and expect others to treat you how YOU want to be treated. The single most important aspect of expecting this from others is communicating how you expect to be treated. Yep, communicate your expectations; anything from how or how not to act, what you will or will not put up with, to what you want or don't want. You might be surprised, many people are often relieved (even if it is a little unnerving or the circumstances upsetting) to understand what's actually expected of them – it makes things easier for both of you in the long run.
Dad of Cameron
The behavior of toxic people drips with venom with a clear object in mind--you. Toxic people can be found anywhere and everywhere. Many toxicants can not be avoided because they hang out very often where we spend most of our time--in the work place.
Elizabeth Lambert Johns
Only bullies had authoritarian parents and disagreed with their parents, whereas only delinquents had conflictual and low supportive parents. Bullying and delinquency are not merely different behavioural manifestations of the same underlying construct.
Anna Baldry, David Farrington
One myth... was that bullies suffer from low self-esteem and need ego boosting. Some schools, in fact, have programs to do just that. "Actually, bullies are doing really well psychologically. They feel very strong... They're popular among their peers, which explains, in part, their good feelings about themselves." What bullies lack are the skills to resolve conflicts peacefully, as well as any empathy for the victim. "They don't necessarily think about the victims' emotional distress," she said. Ironically, researchers have found that many bullies feel they are unfairly treated in school.
Cynthia Lee, UCLA Today
Bullying is not normal, natural, or acceptable. Young victims get hurt, both emotionally and physically. Young bullies can grow up to be abusive adults. Bullying in the classroom prevents students from learning and teachers from teaching.
Allan Beane
Overall, the results of this exploratory study suggest that bullying by students and teachers is a fairly common problem in college. Given the serious and long-term negative mental health consequences associated with being bullied (Duncan, 1999; Katori, 1999; Miller, Verhoek-Miller, Ceminsky, & Nugent, 2000; Olweus, 1999), and the fact that bullied students have been associated with lethal retaliatory violence in American secondary schools, and that as many as one million American college students may be carrying guns and other weapons on campus on a regular basis, it is recommended that the issue of bullying on college campuses receive greater attention.
Mark Chapell et al
While boys typically engage in direct bullying methods, girls who bully are more apt to utilize these more subtle indirect strategies, such as spreading rumors and enforcing social isolation.
Ron Banks
Bullying is described as aggressive behavior normally characterized by repetition and imbalance of power. It may be considered as a normative in many group settings, but socially unacceptable within the ethos of a democratic society.
Peter Smith, Paul Brain
Those who fail to recognize and stop bullying practices as they occur actually promote violence, sending the message to children that might indeed makes right.
Usually bullies come from middle-income families that do not monitor their activities. The parents of bullies are either extremely tolerant and permissive, and allow them to get away with everything, or physically aggressive and abusive.
Kathy Noll
Parental cognitive stimulation and emotional support at age 4 years were each independently protective against bullying... Each hour of television viewed per day at age 4 years was associated with a significant odds ratio of 1.06 for subsequent bullying....The early home environment, including cognitive stimulation, emotional support, and exposure to television, has a significant impact on bullying in grade school.
Frederick J. Zimmerman et al
Presentations, workshops and books on teasing and bullying.
Judy Freedman
As bullying contributes to stress, absenteeism and low morale which, in turn, results in reduced productivity, it is in an organisation's best interests to respond to the problem. Addressing the workplace culture is an important factor in this, says Dr Sandi Mann, an occupational psychologist and contributor to the research, because those likely to bully will thrive in an environment that encourages such behaviour.
Guardian UK
No amount of inappropriate behaviour can possibly justify what really happens to ASD children in schools. Anecdotes range from constant shoving in corridors, held head-down in toilets, locked in cupboards, kicked, punched, beaten unconscious, hanged on the school gate to running the gauntlet in gym changing rooms (practically universal). A favourite appears to be to surround the ASD child with a group of at least four and engage in whatever taunting is most likely to elicit the most satisfactorily terrified response. Note that it is never a one to one engagement here. The odds are always 4 to 1 or worse.
DOE letter reminding schools, colleges and universities that prompt action must be taken if harassment of a student based on disability interferes with the student's ability to participate in or benefit from the school's program.
U.S. Department of Education
Teasing cannot be prevented, and children cannot control what others say; however, they can learn to control their own reactions. The simple strategies listed below will empower them and reduce feelings of helplessness.
The point of this epinion is that verbal barbs can have long-lasting effects. I have tried many times to forgive my classmates and forget remarks like these, but because of the photographic nature of my memory, I find it difficult.
Robert Ruane
Bullying in its truest form is comprised of a series of repeated intentionally cruel incidents, involving the same children, in the same bully and victim roles. Bullying can consist of a single interaction.
To Gulf Shore's grade 9 class, as you go on to Bluefield, a request…. Please take your tolerance and acceptance practices with you. Spread them. Teach them to the kids from the other schools.
Schools have got to understand that it is usually the bully who has got the problem, not the victim.
Kevin Phillips
Bullies and victims use different strategies to interpret social incongruence. Bullies were more similar to the control group than victims were.
Andrea Smorti, Enrica Ciucci
Teacher abuse is the single biggest reason that our schools are dysfunctional. Teachers are frightened into submission, afraid to speak out against detrimental administrative choices that are harming our children. Our educational system operates more like organized crime, than a profession. Many of our districts are closer to a tyrannical dictatorship than a healthy hierarchy.We need an organization to force accountability and reform upon our schools to protect our children and make teaching a profession.
Asperger's Syndrome rescues Nerds from their position at the bottom of the human pecking order and recasts them as Disabled People with Human Rights issues to pursue.
Judy Singer
A non-profit organization working to transform schools, camps and organizations focused on children and youth, into more compassionate, safe and respectful environments.
First, when a pattern of severe risks was present, children later showed more aggression. Second, when the number of risk factors accumulated to some breaking point, children also showed dramatic increases in aggressive behavior.
Malcolm Watson, Kurt Fischer, Jasmina Andreas
The incidence of abuse and peer harassment among individuals with disabilities far exceeds the incidence of victimization in the general population. In addition, individuals with disabilities are less likely to receive abuse awareness and response information, making issues related to effective detection and reporting central concerns, particularly since reports of victimization are much more difficult to identify in this population.
Zopito Marini, Louise Fairbairn, Robin Zuber
Differences in behaviour between disabled and non-disabled children, that are visible in integrated school settings, might also contribute to the higher rate of bullying experienced by children with special needs.
Anne-Marie Sawyer, Anthony Bailey
The primary aim of our work is to provide a clearer understanding of bullying behaviour, by focusing on cognitive and emotional states that might cause bullies to show anti-social behaviour. A review of relevant research about bullying behaviour is presented followed by a brief discussion of empathy and imitation.
Kerstin Dautenhahn, Sarah Woods
We present the hypothesis that bullies possess well developed automatic as well as cognitive empathy, and that bullying behaviour is caused by an overemphasis of goal-directed processes of controlled empathy that work towards nonempathy.
Kerstin Dautenhahn, Sarah Woods
Our schools owe students a safe environment that is conducive to learning. Harassment and hate crimes undermine these purposes and may cause serious harm to the development of students who are victimized by this behavior.
U.S. Department of Education Office for Civil Rights, National Association of Attorneys General
Peers and adults who are blind to the AS child's disabilities may attribute the social awkwardness to willful misbehavior, thus prompting retaliation.
Jed Baker
Concentrates on the relationship between aggressor and victim and studies this relationship from the perspective of the entire group (school class) rather than isolated dyads of children
Marjolijn Vermande, Edwin van den Oord, Paul Goudena, Jan Rispens
The case arose Sept. 26 after the autistic student, a senior, came home from school with a crudely inked Confederate flag on his arm. The senior's father, who asked not to be identified, said his son told him only that it was drawn by "some boy."
Seattle Post Intelligencer
I've had people shove and hit me and call me names. If they would only know how that hurts my feelings. I can't help how I am because I was born autistic... I wish I was like all the other kids, I would really like to have lots of friends. I wish I didn't struggle in my classes in school and have to be in Special Ed. I get teased a lot in school and get called names like retarded. This makes me feel sad.
Missy Everson
Students perceived nearly 60% of teachers and more than 70% of administrators as 'not interested' in reducing bullying on campuses.
Sandra Harris, Garth Petrie
Narratives were revealed to be effective tools to assess, in aggressive children, in bullies and in victims, both their level of social understanding and the strategies they use to reconstruct antecedents.
S.Bisaccia, S.Pagnucci, et al
The ten types of bullying; forms that bullying takes; why me? how bullies select their targets; events that trigger bullying; personal qualities of targets that bullies find irresistible; the difference between bullying and harassment.
Tim Field
Girls and boys use different tactics when bullying; boys are usually physically violent, whereas girls use a psychological approach, singling someone out and ostracising them.
National Autistic Society
Up to 1/3 of the most popular US schoolboys could be aggressive and antisocial. Many of the school initiatives that assist children toward positive development may be overlooking these children because of their popularity.
Sara Abdulla
Although many past studies of peer maltreatment have focused on physical victimization, the importance of an empirical focus on relational victimization has only recently been recognized. In relational victimization, the perpetrator attempts to harm the target through the manipulation of relationships, threat of damage to them, or both.
Nicki R. Crick et al
Teasing requires the ability to understand intention, nonliteral communication, pretense, and social context. Children with autism experience difficulty with such skills, and consequently, are expected to have difficulty with teasing. To better understand teasing concepts and behaviors, children with autism, their parents, and age and Verbal-IQ-matched comparison children and parents described concepts and experiences of teasing and engaged in a parent–child teasing interaction. The teasing of children with autism was less playful and provocative and focused less on social norms than that of comparison children. Similarly, parents of children with autism teased in less playful ways. Scores on a theory of mind task accounted for several of the observed differences. Discussion focused on the importance of understanding social context and playful behavior during teasing.
Erin A. Heerey et al
...but SHOUTING, I've learned, is not the most effective way to be heard. At least I think I've learned that lesson but sometimes I wonder..... There's an awful lot of SHOUTING going on these days about mercury causing autism. It doesn't matter if the majority agree or not, the shear volume of the message drowns out the quiet voices of reason. Question the role of thimerosal, the benefits and risks of chelation, or mention other possible causes and expect to be SHOUTED down with terms like; "Child Abuser" - "Irresponsible Parent" - "Pro-Thimerosal" - "Mercury Lover" - "Pharma-Shill" and several that are too offensive to repeat.
Not Mercury

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This page was last updated on 5 November 2008, 3:48 pm
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