Do You Bully Other People?

Instructor: Elisha Madison

Elisha is a writer, editor, and aspiring novelist. She has a Master's degree in Ancient Celtic History & Mythology and another Masters in Museum Studies.

Do you behave in ways that bully others and don't know it? This lesson will explain how you can tell if you bully other people and discuss ways to avoid this behavior.

What Is Bullying?

You are walking home from school and a kid larger and meaner than you comes and knocks down your books or steals your phone. This is obviously someone who bullies, right? What about the people calling others names on social media sites? Is that bullying behavior?

Bullying is an action or behavior that intentionally hurts others either physically or emotionally. Usually this behavior is aggressive because people who bully try to be in control of a situation and will do anything to create environments where they are. - whether it is in sly and manipulative fashion, intimidation, or in physical altercations.

Do You Bully?

Something that's hard to acknowledge is that all of us have likely been involved with bullying behavior in our lives. There are three large ways that people are bullied:

  • Cyberbullying
  • Physical bullying
  • Emotional bullying

Bullying takes many forms

You may not throw smaller kids against a locker door, but have you spread a rumor? Or maybe lied to a teacher or blamed something you have done on another student so you would not get in trouble? There are many forms of bullying, and unfortunately, we can all say we have had some sort of involvement in bullying. But how can you really tell if you act with bullying behavior?

Some things to ask yourself:

  • Do you sometimes hit or hurt other students on purpose?
  • Do you tease other students?
  • Do you take or break other students' possessions?
  • Do you spread rumors or malicious gossip about other students?
  • Do you mock people on Facebook?
  • Do you have friends that flinch away from you?
  • Do you look down on other kids in school that are less fortunate than you?
  • Are you judgmental about people's clothes or unique hairstyles?
  • Do you always want to control a situation?
  • Are your jokes centered around mocking others?
  • Do you find yourself laughing at people with disabilities?
  • Do you find that you have to constantly lie to stay out of trouble?
  • Does your behavior change drastically when your parents come to your school?

These are just some of the questions you should ask yourself. The last one is especially important, because it is very reflective of a problem. If you behave one way at school, but completely switch behaviors when family comes to visit for an event, you should ask yourself, why? Do you talk nicer? Are you more respectful and polite? Perhaps this just means you are trying to be too sexy or silly in school. But it can also be a bigger issue. It could mean you know your behavior is aggressive and angry towards others, and when someone who you care about may see it, you change.

Steps You Can Take To Stop Bullying

Bullying can take the form of small insignificant comments you make about clothes or hairstyles, but their affect is still immense. So how do you stop? Although trying to understand our actions is a challenge for everyone, it is a good way to start figuring out if you bully and why you bully.

Many schools want to be a bully free zone.

One way that you can avoid bullying behavior is by treating others how you would want to be treated. Would you want to be made fun of for your clothes or your glasses? Would you be okay if rumors were started about you and people you have kissed or dated? Think about all of those little things that you say about others to your friends. How would you feel if your friends said these things about you? Once you realize that even the smallest slights can be hurtful, the easier it will be to take a moment before you speak. Here are some other simple things you can do:

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