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EFFECTS OF RATIONAL SELF ANALYSIS AND COGNITIVE RESTRUCTURING COUNSELLING TECHNIQUES ON BULLYING BEHAVIOUR AMONG SECONDARY SCHOOL STUDENTS IN LOKOJA, KOGI STATE, NIGERIA
1.1 Background to the Study
Bullying behaviour is a persistent and repeated negative action which is intended to intimidate, hurt another person in a weaker position, or the systematic abuse of power (Smith et al as cited in Owoyemi, 2012).
Townsend, Alan, Chikobvu, Carl and Gary (2012), said that bullying is generally defined as largely unprovoked, negative physical or psychological actions perpetrated repeatedly over time between bullies and victims. They said bullying can lead to fear of school, absenteeism, and stunted academic progress, which in turn are precursors to dropping out of school.
Owuamanam (2015) opined that bullying is a form of aggressive behaviour manifested by the use of force or coercion to affect others particularly when the behaviour is habitual and involves imbalance of power.
Eweniyi, Adeoye, Ayodele and Adebayo (2013), opined that bullying constitutes a significant threat to the mental, social and physical well being of school children. That it is an old phenomenon and worldwide problem, and has defied several efforts to curt it.
Thus, school bullying behaviour is a serious problem which has received considerable media attention. A National Survey in 2011 carried out at USA; found that twenty three percent (23%) of public school students (aged 12 – 18) reported bullying victimization (Roberts, Kemp, and Truman, 2013). Another National Survey in USA found that twenty eight percent (28%) of students (aged 12 – 18) reported being bullied on school property, and an estimated sixteen percent (16%) reported being bullied electronically in 2011 (Centre for Disease Control and Prevention, 2012).
Bullying victims frequently experience depression, anxiety, low self esteem, school adjustment problems, academic difficulties, and suicidal behaviour (Duckworth and Follette, 2012; Albayrak, 2012). Being victimized or bullied generates psychosocial distress in children and adolescents, and victimization can be a precursor to emotional and behavioural disorders, low academic achievement, dropping out of school, and subsequently substance misuse. There has been increasing research interest in USA in the relationship between victimization and substance misuse (Radliff, Wheaton, Robinson, and Morris, 2012).
Tambawal and Umar (2017) were of the views in their study that bullying has effects on secondary school students in Nigeria. That bullying in schools in Nigeria was a phenomenon that has serious psychological conseque221
nces for victims and these include; low psychological well – being, poor school adjustment, psychological distress and physical illness. They opined that some of the major causes of bullying identified are; defective or wrong – upbringing of children, peer group influence among others. Again, they identified some of the effects of bullying as; fear and tension in victims, refusing to go to the school on the part of the victims amongst others. Thus, they recommended that every secondary school should have anti – bullying policies and to take appropriate measure to stamp it out.
Adegboyega, Jacob, Uyanne and Jacob (2016), reported that bullying behaviour was the most common form of violence in schools among secondary school students in Yagba West, Kogi State, Nigeria; That the school management should create conducive environment for students to feel safe and that victim of bullying should be encouraged to report and not to be stereotyped; and that cases of bullying should be referred to the school counsellors for proper, adequate and appropriate handling.
A growing body of National and International research in USA suggests that all types of bullying behaviour or victimization create a proximal risk for substance misuse among adolescents (Fekkes, 2016). In other words, youth who are bullied by their peers are at a heightened risk of alcohol, tobacco and drug use, although these associations vary, depending on gender, types of victimization or bullying behaviour (such as physical, mental) and types of substances (Mistral, 2016). Bullying victims suffer from internalizing problems more frequently than non – victims (Kaur, 2014). Victims can display internalizing problems because of a perceived lack of ability to change or improve their situation that reinforces feelings of depression, anxiety or hopelessness (Hong, Dallis, Sterzing, Choi and Smith, 2014).
U. S. Department of Health and Human Services (2017) said that there are two sources of federally collected data on youth bullying, namely: The 2014 – 2015 school crime supplement – PDF (National Centre for Education Statistics and Bureau of Justice Statistics) indicates that Nationwide, about 21% of students ages 12 – 18 experienced bullying. The 2015 Youth Risk Behaviour Surveillance System (Centre for Disease Control and Prevention) indicates that nationwide, 20% of students in grades 9 – 12 report being bullied on school property in the 12 months preceding the survey.
Omoniyi (2013), reported that bullying behaviour was no doubt becoming a common feature and a nightmare in schools both in and outside Nigeria. It was a worrisome practice in schools because it infringes on the child‟s right to human dignity, privacy, freedom and security.
That the physical, emotional and educational consequences of bullying behaviour can never be underestimated; he further opined that bullying behaviour in schools have manifested characteristics on both the bullies and their victims as well as the psychosocial and psychological effects on the victims. That educators and other stakeholders should begin to address the problems of bullying and may encouraged a zero bullying tolerance within and outside the school community.