Bullying and harassment are known to cause PTSD and physical health problems as a result of the stress of the harassment and the stress that reporting and dealing with it causes. Isn’t it time we take that seriously?
Being bullied is stressful. Very stressful. It’s a pattern of harassment over time and it takes a toll on the victim. That toll can be physical as well as emotional and mental. Both of which can benefit from professional care.
Let me give you an example. At one point in my life I was stalked. The experience made me so nervous I developed a nervous bladder which required medical treatment and medicines. My urologist told me that sometimes physical stress manifests as a physical problem. I required medicine and medical care for a condition that was ultimately – caused by too much stress.
There is a reason that people who experience harassment in the workplace have been winning court causes and receiving payouts. Companies that fail to protect people from these stress induced medical problems should be held liable for the medical bills required to treat these conditions. What companies should do – is consider the mental and physical effects of bullying workplace injuries and pay for treatment accordingly – both mental health treatment and physical health treatment. They should also understand that tolerating harassment behavior is expensive.
We also really need to normalize mental health treatment and help people understand that some of their physical symptoms may be related to the physical stress they are under. Very few people have the skills to cope with harassment or bullying on their own and mental health professionals can have a huge impact in a very short amount of time so it’s money well spent.