Bullying is a repetitive aggressive behaviour that can be physical or verbal, it can either be online or in person. It is an unwanted aggressive behaviour and stems out from real or perceived power imbalance. Bullying is the intentional harm or discomfort one gives to others.
Bullying is deliberate and ongoing misuse of power in relationships. It involves an individual or group of individuals who misuse their power or perceived power over a person who usually can’t stop the happening.
In order for a behaviour to be called bullying, it should have the following characteristics,
• An imbalance of power
Bullying include activities such as spreading rumours, making threats, attacking someone physically or verbally, excluding someone from group and so on.
Bullying can be physical, verbal or relationship bullying.
• Physical bullying: It involves hitting, kicking and pushing. It may also include stealing, hiding things , humiliating and harassing.
• Verbal bullying: It involves name calling, teasing , taunting, insulting. Thus includes verbal abuse.
• Relationship bullying: It includes spreading rumours or lies, excluding someone from group or refusing to talk to them.
Reports suggest that boys are more likely to get involved in physical bullying , whereas girls are reportedly more involved in verbal bullying. But either type of bullying should not be tolerated.
With the development in digital platform, bullying is no longer limited to public place. One can get bullied even sitting at home via the digital platform. Unlike traditional bullying, cyber bullying does not require face to face contact. It doesn’t require physical power or strength in numbers.
• Cyber bullying come in all shape and form: Almost everyone at internet can be a cyber bully and can be its victim even without revealing their true identity.
• Cyber bullying has no time constraint: A cyber bully can torment you 24 hours a day. It can occur anywhere and just with a single click hundreds of people can see the humiliation.
• Method of cyber bullying can vary: The method people use to cyber bully others can vary with the platform they use. It can be via text, email, stealing someone’s online identity and so on.
Cyber bullying is common both with boys and girls. Since it is so easy to perpetrate, one can easy turn from a victim of cyber bullying to a cyber bully.
Effects of Bullying and Cyber bullying
A victim of bullying or cyber bullying usually experience same effect. These includes:
• Experiencing a turmoil of emotions: A victim usually experiences feeling of anger, isolation, fear, hopelessness, helplessness. If severe the victim might also experience suicidal tendencies.
• Poor mental health: A victim is at a greater risk of developing depression, low self esteem, anxiety and other mental health conditions.
• Reducing social contacts: A victim usually reduces their social contacts. In case of bullying they might leave school, college, workplace , in order to avoid being bullied. In cyber bullying, they may withdraw themselves from social platforms altogether.
Ways to deal with Bully
There is no definite solution or full proof way to deal with bullies. However since bullying and cyber bullying impacts the mental health of a person it is extremely important to deal with bullies . Suffering in silence is never the solution.
• It is not your fault: Do not blame yourself, it is not your fault. No matter what the bully says but you do not deserve this . The bully is the problem, not the victim. Do not change yourself .
• Change your perspective: The bully is usually the one who is insecure with themselves. They want to control your feelings, so you too feel miserable about yourself just like they do . Do not let them break your confidence.
• Don’t dwelling into it: One should try to stay as away from bullies as possible. Do not read hate comments or messages. Instead focus on the good and positive things in life.
• Learn to manage stress: Bullying does induce stress, making it very important for the victim to manage stress. Yoga, meditation, exercise not only helps in dealing with stress but also promotes physical wellbeing.
• Engage in hobbies and fun activities: The more time one spends on hobbies and other activities they get pleasure from , away the person stays from bullying. Hobbies make a person better version of themselves and makes them secure individuals.
If you are a victim of bullying, just remember it is not your fault. You do not deserve it. You are not the problem , your bullies are.