What is Bullying?
As we mentioned earlier, bullying is a word which is used often but it can have many different meanings, from a verbally and physically aggressive person in our life to a person who seems to make us feel uncomfortable or less than. An experience of bullying can affect us for the rest of our lives and can greatly affect how we move forward in life.
Increasingly, society recognises the bully in his or her many roles…
The abusive husband or wife, the controlling boyfriend or girlfriend, the friend who lays down too many rules, the mean people on social media, the group who won’t let someone join in, the abusive parent, trolls, laws of some Countries, some religions, sexism, ageism, homophobia, racism…. The list is almost endless and can change depending on our experiences in life.
We find that the wording can change as well. Recently, we hear much about coercive control which has now become a legal term for people who abusively control others. It has also become a crime which shows how seriously we can be affected by bullies.
Bullies themselves can come in many different guises. They can be angry individuals who seem to enjoy inflicting hurt or pain on others, to smart, charismatic people who mange to fool those around them.
The level of bullying can also vary. Again there is physical abuse, mental or emotional abuse which can be very visual signs of bullying. There can also be “invisible scars” where one person controls the thinking and behaviour of another, e.g. the boyfriend who won’t let his girlfriend see her friends. He tells her they are no good for her anyway, and he is the only person who truly loves her so why does she need them anyway?
Some people may not even realise they are being bullied, or they may think they can change the other person.
Bullying behaviour may include in summary…
Calling names, lying to get you into trouble, physical abuse, taking things from you, damaging your stuff on purpose, stealing your money, leaving you out, spreading rumours about you in person or online, threats and intimidation, abusive calls or messages… etc.
Parents and teachers and even your friends can help but ultimately, if you wan to beat the bullies for good it is down to you!
Together, we are going to learn how to turn this situation around!
Next, we are going to learn about the victim / bully relationship.