What Is Bullying

Overview

 
Definition
 
Bullying is an unwanted, aggressive behavior that happens among school-aged children and usually takes place between individual with a clear authority contrast, where one is a victim and the other is a dominant figure. In order for a behavior to be considered as “bullying”, it has to happen over an extended period of time and repeatedly. The kids who are bullied and the ones who bully may develop long-term effects.
 
The aspects of bullying can be narrowed down to 3 aspects:
 
1- Aggressive: whether psychologically or physically
 
2- An Imbalance of power: Kids who bully usually take advantage of their perceived power - which may be physical strength or popularity – to control and/or harm others.
 
3- Repetition: Bullying behavior happens more than once or has the likelihood to happen more than once.
 
Bullying includes actions such as making threats, spreading rumors, attacking someone physically or verbally, and excluding someone from a group intentionally.
 

 
Types of Bullying
 
There are 4 types of bullying:
 
1- Verbal bullying- which involves saying or writing mean things. It includes:
- Teasing
- Name-calling
- Inappropriate sexual comments
- Taunting
- Threatening to cause harm
 
2- Psychological Bullying (also referred to as Social bullying, relational bullying)- which involves hurting someone’s reputation or relationships. It includes:
- Leaving someone out on purpose
- Telling other children not to be friends with someone
- Spreading rumors about someone
- Embarrassing someone in public
 
3- Physical bullying- which involves hurting a person’s body or possessions. It  includes:
- Hitting/kicking/pinching
- Spitting
- Tripping/pushing
- Taking or breaking someone’s things
- Making mean or rude hand gestures
- Sexual Harassment
 
4- Cyberbullying – which involves the use of technology to harm others. It includes:
- Using any electronic device to bully; like laptops, PCs, phones, tablets etc...
- Using any communication platform to bully; like social networking websites, SMS, chat rooms, websites etc.
- Sending mean messages or threats
- Spreading rumors online
- Posting hurtful or threatening messages
- Stealing a person's account information
- Pretending to be someone else online
- Circulating unflattering pictures of a person
 

 
Where and When Bullying Happens

Bullying can occur during or after school hours. While most reported bullying happens in indoor school buildings, a significant percentage also happens in places like on the playground or the bus. It can also happen going to or from school, in the child’s neighborhood, or on the Internet.