This Friday 16 March 2018, Australian schools will stand united in their communities to celebrate the eighth National Day of Action against Bullying and Violence (NDA).  To coincide with this Your Psych Centre will post an information series highlighting the issues and what can be done to help those who bully and are bullied.

What is bullying?

Bullying doesn’t just happen in schools, or with children; It is evident in workplaces, social scenes, and among children and adults alike. It is defined as “repeated aggressive behaviour where one person (or group of people) in a position of power deliberately intimidates, abuses, or coerces an individual with the intention to hurt that person physically or emotionally”. There is a clear line between conflict and bullying.

Incidents of bullying must include all 3 of these characteristics:

1) Intentional- the behavior was aggressive and a deliberate attempt to hurt another person

2) Repeated- these aggressive actions occur repeatedly over time to the same person or group of people

3) Power imbalance- the person bullying has more physical or social power than the child or children being bullied

Types of Bullying

bullying  There are four types of bullying:

1) Physical such as kicking or pushing;

2) Verbal such as name-calling or yelling;

3) Relational such as excluding or rumor-spreading;

4) Cyberbullying which involves sending hurtful messages over digital devices like computers and cell phones

 What is the impact?

Youth who are bullied are more likely to suffer from the following:

  • Depression, anxiety, eating disorders, and thoughts of suicide
  • Health issues like headaches, sleep problems, abdominal pain, bed-wedding, and fatigue
  • Academic issues including poor attendance, low test scores, and increased dropout rates

Youth who bully:

  • Are at greater risk of smoking tobacco and drinking alcohol
  • Perform poorly in school and have a poor perception of school environment
  • Are more likely to become involved in criminal activity and to experience psychiatric disorders

If you or child are experiencing the effects of bullying, we can help. Contact us to make a confidential appointment.

Next time….why do people bully?