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There is a Monster Lurking in the Corners - Bullying

By Stacey Chavez, Angelirene Cuautle and Nadia Hidalgo

Long Island City - You walk by yourself in the hallways, no one to talk to, no one who cares. Suddenly you hear footsteps coming from the corner. Boo! The bully monster! Nowhere to hide…

‘Nowhere to hide’ Drawn by Mark Lazar~

Over 3.2 million people are victims of bullying each year. Bullying is a serious issue because it can lead to children and teens suicidal thoughts. Because of bullying there are about 4,400 deaths per year that were caused by suicide. 77% of students across the country were bullied mentally, verbally and physically.

Verbal bullying is saying mean things to another person and cyberbullying is when someone makes rumors and says mean things about someone through social media. Being physically bullied is possibly the worst type of bullying. It’s when other people are physically hurting someone, like punching, pinching or kicking.

Bullying mostly happens at school between students. People get bullied because of their race, religion, sexuality, how they look and disabilities they may have. Kids or even adults shouldn’t be offended because of their race, sexuality or how they look. They should be proud of where they’re from and who they are as a person.
Here are some statistics from our own school. In an anonymous survey of 100 HPCMS students, 45% of the them in our school shared that they have been bullied while 55% of the other students haven’t. For the kids that have been bullied they have either been affected by it in a mental or physical way. We also took the risk on our survey of asking if the student had ever bullied anyone. 28% of the students say that they haven’t bullied anyone while 72% of the rest say that they have.
“Sure” you might say. I am the other 33% who have never been bullied. Guess what - bullying affects everyone. Have you ever seen someone being bullied or have you ever bullied someone yourself? By not standing up it has affected you in the long run. It has caused you to be less empathic.You might not even notice that you have bullied someone. Look back in your life. Ever made a comment about someone that wasn't exactly ‘nice’, rolled your eyes at someone just because or simply not let someone hangout with you and your friends just because you don't like them? Most of the time adults tell you that that is bullying and that you need to be friends with everyone, but that is not the case. As I kid myself I know that sometimes you can't be friend with everyone. But what you can do is simply smile. You don't know what a person is dealing with and smiling is a perfect way to give support. 

I’m sorry if this is scaring you but this is the scary truth that not many of us like to think about. Imagine not feeling safe going to school or getting a feeling that no one cares about you. So what we did is asked some kids if they felt safe in school. Here is what 6th grader Alix Hernandez said: “I feel okay about going to school, but there are sometimes where I think, should I go or should I not. Most of the time it’s a yes, that I should go to school because here I know that others and teachers will protect me if anything bad happens.”

Overall people feel safe because they know someone will always be there for them. Sadly this isn’t always the case, multiple kids from the survey chose “not safe at all, afraid for my life.” Yes, you say, but the majority of students at HPCMS say they feel safe here, but that doesn't matter. If even one child doesn’t feel safe then we have to look out for them.

‘Kid-Monster’ Drawn by Mark Lazar

Think of it like this: there is a farmer, the farmer is like society. He gains profit from his crops and the crops are like us - kids! The future! Some of his crops don’t get as much nutrients and water and they die. When the farmer goes to sell all his crops, he doesn't get as much profit as he would have liked. He has to cut the budget and now doesn’t have the same luxuries as before. Slowly the farm crumbles. If we don’t nurture kids now that they are young, they will grow up badly affected by bullying, and sadly might even want to take their lives feeling unwanted.This doesn't just affect the kids, but also basically everyone else. These kids could have grown up to be doctors, lawyers, teachers, politicians or even a celebrity but now society doesn't have them.

These kids are important and we want them to know that. Sadly these kids choose to stay anonymous, but we can really help. This is why we are writing this article, to speak out for them.

The reason some kids don’t stand up is because they feel that the school staff doesn’t do much to help the kids or to give them support. This is what 6th grader Catalina Contreras has to say. “My old school wouldn’t care much if you were being bullied. All they would say is, ok so we are going to call your parents, that's all they would do. They would suspend that person for three days but when the bully would come back she or he would continue doing the same things; he or she would never learn.”

I think she made an important point here. Most people who get targeted by a bully don't stand up for themselves because they are afraid that once they do, the bully will not face any consequences and will just continue. In some cases, the bullying might even get worse.

But not any more. We are about to tell you Nadia’s story, one of our writers. She has been bullied and this is what she has to say about it.

Nadia’s Bullying Story

I know some of you guys don’t completely like me but this is my true story so please refrain from any mean comments. Besides that, thank you for taking time to read my story.

3 Grade:
After Thanksgiving break, I got moved to a class with more kids. A few weeks later, kids from my class started to be mean to me. They were calling me names that hurt my feelings. Every single day, I told my parents about the kids that were being mean to me. I told them to stop. Everyone did except this one student.

4 Grade:
I was dealing with the student again. This time it was worse. Kids were bullying me from my class and other classes. After months of dealing with this, my mom had a meeting with some teachers and the principal. Weeks later, me and the student went to the counselor and we were talking about how we feel. After a few weeks, the student was not bullying me anymore. Just because I am writing this, it does not mean that this situation was done.

5 Grade:
I was dealing with the student again only this time I was bullying the student - the positions switched. I thought it would make me feel better but I felt bad. I realized that no matter what the situation, you should never bully anyone. (And for the girl that I bullied, I am sorry.)

6 Grade:
I am still dealing with the bullying situation. I was first dealing with one student. This person was calling me bad words and rolling her eyes. We were both sent to Ms. Munoz where we were talking about what was happening. (And for the the student that bullied me...I know you are not a bad person. I hope that we might be able to become friends). Right now I feel like I am being bullied by another person. This person says that they don’t care that they do this to me. They say bad things about me and roll their eyes. (And for this student who is hurting my feelings, I don’t hate you, I sincerely don’t. I just want to know why do you do all these things. You might not think that it is mean but it hurts me, and it hurts you too, you just don't see it yet. I know you are a good person and I hope that we can become friends.) Also, I would like to thank my sixth grade friends for their thoughts about how I can change my attitude and for cheering me on.

Final Thoughts

This situation must stop. This might seem petty to you but this is a real situation that a lot of people like myself have to deal with. If you are being bullied and can’t let your feelings out, this is an opportunity to come and stand up for yourself. Let’s come together and stop.

Finally, let’s end on a happy note. We have amazing guidance counselors at HPCMS that can help and support you. You can contact them at or at

If you or anyone you know has been bullied, don’t worry because we are here to support you! Know that there are clubs you can join or sports. A great club to join is the GSSA. You might have heard of it before from your crew teacher, which is also why you might stop reading now. WAIT! No, it is not just a club for people who are ‘gay.’ It is for everyone and any one who wants to learn more about the LGBTQ community or just want to ask questions. This group of people are very open and friendly people. In fact one of the group leaders herself has been bullied. 8th grader Chloe Ritter, the co-group leader of the GSSA said “Bullying is not something you get over. I can think back to 5th grade or 6th when someone was hurting me, I can remember the raw emotions that I felt. It’s not something that you can forget...It started really when was in 5th grade. I was pushed around a lot, I was physically hurt. I was confused on whether or not I should tell someone because people would always call you tattle-tale and things like that. Bullying is still a problem for me to this day. But it has died down now that I have been able to tell people about it.” “Friends are what mostly got me through it. It would be nice to have meaningful conversations with someone has experienced to same thing.”

She understands your struggles and wants you to know to stay strong. And just remember, if people are trying to bring you down, it only means that you are above them. As the great Michelle Obama said “When they go low, we go high!”

If you want to learn more on this topic and how to help, you can go to

If you ever need support you can contact us at


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