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Why Do People Bully?

Instructor: Artem Cheprasov
Bullying is a form of aggressive behavior that is often associated with children but definitely occurs with adults as well. So why does this happen to both? This lesson goes over many of the reasons for why children and adults bully others.

What Is Bullying?

Have you ever felt threatened or powerless when someone behaved in an aggressive manner towards you? Maybe it was something they said. Perhaps they even physically assaulted you. Or, they may have gossiped behind your back. All are examples of various forms of bullying. This is where an aggressive person takes aim at a victim in a threatening manner, often repeatedly. This makes the victim feel powerless and hurt.

Why do people do this? Let's find out as we explore the many reasons for why people bully.

Why Do Kids Bully?

It is not uncommon for children to experience bullying. Why do kids bully? Sometimes, the underlying reason lies at home. Children who do not receive enough attention at home may bully others merely for attention. Reasons for why children may not get enough attention include:

  • Parents who are alcoholics or drug abusers
  • Children who are neglected by their parents outright
  • Children of some divorced parents

Another reason for the bullying may be that the child is trying to feel more secure about themselves if they've been bullied by an older sibling. In other words, if the older sibling has bullied the younger one, the younger sibling now feels powerless. To try and 'empower' themselves, the younger sibling will go out and victimize someone else. Similarly, if the the parents are bullies, children will mimic this behavior.

Why Do Adults Bully?

That means that adults can be bullies too. Why would an adult be a bully? Well, as you just learned, the bullying may be a behavior that has carried on over from childhood and has become ingrained in the adult as well.

Adults bully to avoid feeling helpless. By bullying people, they derive a sense of relief that they aren't powerless. Adults can also bully to try and get ahead in the workplace. By spreading rumors or even physically intimidating someone, they try to get their way in order to move their way up at work.

Other Reasons For Bullying

Many of the reasons for why adults and kids bully overlap, however. Some other potential reasons for bullying include:

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