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“No one heals himself by wounding another.” – St. Ambrose

Source: (Carrigan, 2017)

Bullying is a mode of aggression directed at someone intentionally and it’s done repeatedly in order to cause that person harm and pain. In response the person finds it challenging to defend themselves and so the bully continues to hurt them in different ways.

Signs of a bullied child/adult:
  • – don’t want to attend school/work,
  • – lose interest in studies and extra curricular activities,
  • – come home with missing or vandalized belongings,
  • – have low self-esteem and confidence,
  • – have low productivity levels and morale,
  • – insecure,
  • – don’t have a proper friend/social circle to connect with,
  • – feel anxious, fearful and depressed for long periods of time and perhaps even talk about suicide.
What makes a person want to bully others?

There are many reasons for this but generally it’s because they want to dominate others. The idea of subduing others and proving they can get their own way. They are rash and usually defiant of those in authority and so they exhibit that through bullying. Another explanation would be that they come from families where they witness abuse regularly and so they experiment on others. They may even be abused by their parents; for instance the mother and/or father might call them names, mock them, highlight their mistakes, hit them sometimes using objects. As a result of this the person may act out by bullying others. 

Forms/Modes/Types of Bullying

Bullying can happen in different ways and through a variety of mediums. Cyber bullying is one form of bullying prevalent in our times; this includes threatening, spreading rumors, commenting hurtful things and sharing private and/or humiliating photos/videos of the person. Bullying in the workplace is also common; yelling, scolding, pressuring employees to meet unreasonable demands, mobbing, ganging up on employees, inventing rumors/scandals and excluding them.

How does a child/adult continue living with it and move on from it?

Firstly, report all forms of bullying the moment that it happens. Firmly tell the bully to stop and if they persist then walk away before the situation escalates. Then speak to someone you trust and try to surround yourself with people. As difficult as it is, avoid bullying the bully because “two wrongs won’t make a right”. Finally, file a police report and make a case against the bully/aggressor. 

It is important to bear in mind that just because a child/adult doesn’t talk about bullying doesn’t mean it doesn’t happen. As a parent, spouse, family member, friend – it’s crucial that we look for the signs to ensure the safety and well-being of our dear ones. 

References

American Psychological Association. (2010, April 2). Bullying: What parents, teachers can do to stop it [Press release]. http://www.apa.org/news/press/releases/2010/04/bullying

American Psychological Association. (2009).  Beware of cyberbullying. https://www.apa.org/topics/bullying/online

American Psychological Association. (2011, January 1). How parents, teachers and kids can take action to prevent bullying. https://www.apa.org/topics/bullying/prevent 

American Psychological Association. (2004). School bullying is nothing new, but psychologists identify new ways to prevent it. https://www.apa.org/research/action/bullying

American Psychological Association. (2016, November). Bullying prevention is a top APA priority. Monitor on Psychology47(10). http://www.apa.org/monitor/2016/11/policy-brief

Carrigan, L. (2017, May 23). Beating the bullies: Tackling ijime in Japan. GaijinPot. https://blog.gaijinpot.com/beating-bullies-tackling-ijime-japan/

Graham, S. (2010, February 16). Bullying: A module for teachers. American Psychological Association. http://www.apa.org/education-career/k12/bullying