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The Impact of Teasing, Name Calling and Bullying

By Mike Jacquart

I'd have to say the most difficult part of writing my new book, Climbing out of Darkness: A Personal Journey into Mental Wellness (with Marina London LCSW), involved reliving some of the experiences and related feelings I had to recall while penning certain sections of the book.

This included bullying. As a new kid in the fifth grade in the public school I attended, I was bullied and teased A LOT. One particularly mean boy would chase me all the way home. More than fifty years ago, I still remembered these awful incidents well enough that I could almost picture his face. And I recalled breathing a deep sigh of relief when I got home, opened the door, and slammed it shut behind me.

That was bad enough. While bullying of the physical variety was harmful, at least I had a reprieve once I shut the door. I can't imagine how much more difficult it would have been today if my tormentor could have also lashed out at me via texts, social media posts, and other electronic forms of chastisement, since those can be just as devastating as those that occur face to face. At least I did not have experiences like those to relive.

And yet, whether electronic or face to face, and regardless of whether one is at home, school, or even in the workplace, and regardless at what age - child, teen, or adult - the effects of bullying are often similar: anxiety, insomnia, and difficulty concentrating, for starters.

I can definitely relate to that last part. Whether it's teasing, name calling, bullying, or all three, anyone already suffering from a lack of confidence and self-esteem, as was the case with me, is bound to find it even more difficult to cope with the torment.

But it's only been in recent times that the trauma children experience due to emotional abuse has been brought to light. In fact, there are similarities between playground bullies, and as adults, workplace bullying. As noted, whether child or adult, the ill behavior does not have to be face to face to be effective.

"When a person has low EQ, or Emotional Quotient, and they do little to improve their EQ, it is very likely that they could become, or perceived as, a bully," adds Paula Marshall, CEO of the Bama Companies.

Likewise, if a child remains insecure and lacks self-confidence as an adult, these antagonistic incidents are likely to go on much longer than than they need to. If you, or someone you know, is being bullied in the workplace, I would not assume this person knows how, or is able to, address the situation. The employee might well need HELP, such as that available from an employee assistance program (EAP).

The point is, emotional/verbal abuse brought on by teasing, name calling, and bullying, does not necessarily end when childhood is over. Such torment can continue into adulthood. Sad, but true. Our life experiences have a lot to do with shaping who we become as adults. It is why I strived to help the reader understand the impact of mental health in everyday life in my new book.

Climbing out of Darkness: A Personal Journey into Mental Wellness is available on Amazon at

For roughly the same price, the author will snail mail a signed copy. To learn more, contact him at

This article serves as an introduction of sorts to a series of new blog posts and podcasts, especially for men, to be distributed by Fresh Hope for Mental Health,

More to come in a future post!

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