What Are the Long-Term Effects of Bullying?

Long-Term Effects Of Bullying

Being bullied is a terrible thing for anyone to experience, and it can often take a long time to fully move on from the experience.

Although bullying is extremely difficult to deal with at the time you face it, the effects can sometimes be long lasting. A study on bullying by the British Journal of Educational Psychology conducted an interview with individuals who had been bullied. Results showed that 46% of respondents reported their effects persisted into adulthood.

Upset woman - bullying

You may not even realise that you’re dealing with the long-term emotional impact of a bullying experience from long ago. The first step is awareness of the symptoms that may arise.  It’s important to try and deal with these issues head on to stop them being triggered again in the future.


Let’s take a closer look some of the most common long-term effects that bullying can have:


  • Trust issues:

    Loss of trust can be one of the most challenging outcomes of bullying to overcome. Bullying can cause paranoia as it occurs, as you start to feel confused about who you can trust and rely on. You start to wonder if even those who are close to you are gossiping behind your back. This can sometimes result in long-term trust issues. Your prior negative experience with others can stop you from wanting to open up and trusting people your innermost feelings.


  • Loss of confidence:

    Bullying can, unfortunately, result in low self-esteem, as you lose confidence in your own worth and abilities. It can be difficult to forget the harmful things that a bully has told you about yourself, and perhaps you start to believe them. This is more likely to happen the earlier in life that you’ve been bullied. Our perception of ourselves is heavily shaped in our younger years. Since it especially deals with the underlying roots of issues and childhood experiences, schema therapy has proven effective for those dealing with such self-esteem issues.


  • Anxiety and depression:

    Those who may have been bullied can be more prone to bouts of depression, as they relive the memories of what they’ve had to face. They can also suffer from social anxiety and could potentially shut themselves down to interacting with others who they fear might treat them in the same manner. Isolating yourself can lead to sinking deeper into depression. Talking therapies such as cognitive behavioural therapy can be hugely helpful in dealing with anxiety and depression.

upset man - bullying

  • Post-traumatic stress disorder:

    After the trauma of being bullied, it is possible that you could suffer from PTSD. This can lead to lack of sleep and a diminished appetite, which can then result in further health problems. Again, talking therapies are valuable in helping express your emotions around the bullying you’ve faced. A therapist can help you work on resolving your PTSD so you can stop reliving such traumatic experiences in your mind.

This is a collaborative post


  1. Kim Carberry 31st August 2017 at 9:24 pm

    I was bullied all through school and because of it I know I have confidence and trust issues…
    I wish the bullies would realise what impact they have on someone’s life! Grr x

    1. shelllouise 2nd September 2017 at 11:14 am

      I was bullied as well because of my weight. It’s an awful thing for children to have to deal with 🙁

Don't be shy, come and talk to me! :o)

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.