According to Field ([2002-2004, Web site (accessed 21/08/06):

‘Bullying causes injury to health and makes you ill. How many of these symptoms do you have?

  1. Constant high levels of stress and anxiety
  2. Frequent illness such as viral infections especially flu and glandular fever, colds, coughs, chest, ear, nose and throat infections (stress plays havoc with your immune system)
  3. Aches and pains in the joints and muscles with no obvious cause; also back pain with no obvious cause and which won’t go away or respond to treatment
  4. Headaches and migraines
  5. Tiredness, exhaustion, constant fatigue
  6. Sleeplessness, nightmares, waking early, waking up more tired than when you went to bed
  7. Flashbacks and replays, obsessiveness, can’t get the bullying out of your mind
  8. Irritable bowel syndrome
  9. Skin problems such as eczema, psoriasis, athlete’s foot, ulcers, shingles, urticaria
  10. Poor concentration, can’t concentrate on anything for long
  11. Bad or intermittently-functioning memory, forgetfulness, especially with trivial day-to-day things
  12. Sweating, trembling, shaking, palpitations, panic attacks
  13. Tearfulness, bursting into tears regularly and over trivial things
  14. Uncharacteristic irritability and angry outbursts
  15. Hyper vigilance (feels like but is not paranoia), being constantly on edge
  16. Hypersensitivity, fragility, isolation, withdrawal
  17. Reactive depression, lethargy, hopelessness, anger, futility and more
  18. Shattered self-confidence, low self-worth, low self-esteem, loss of self-love, etc.

According to Witheridge (2001: 9), depression, suicidal thoughts and divorce are reported as being common symptoms or phenomena and children often receive less attention. Indeed it is not uncommon, suggests Witheridge (2001: 9), for the victim to have murderous thoughts about their abuser. Yet ironically and unfortunately for those who are severely affected, suicide is a more likely outcome as these thoughts are turned inwards towards the self.