Why People Bully?
Bullying is a psychological mechanism to deal with an inner problem by acting it out. A bully typically needs to dominate and feel on top. A bully typically tries
- To compensate for their inadequacy and reduce their fear of being seen as weak, inadequate and often incompetent individuals
- To avoid accepting responsibility for their behaviour and the harmful effect it has on others
- To divert attention away from the fact that they are not doing anything to remedy the inadequacies
If bullying is not dealt with, the bully can destroy another person’s life.
- Suffer in silence – This is exactly what most bullies want the victim to do. The sight of the tortured and bullied intimidated, grovelling in fear typically makes bullies feel stronger and more powerful. Most of the bullied persons just hope that avoiding the bully and hoping that the bully will find a new victim, just solves the problem. This happens rarely and many people suffer irreparable damage to their personalities and many are driven to suicide in desperation. Bullies typically expect a docile reaction, so if the victim reciprocates with the docile and groveling response, the problem will continue.
- Confront the bully – Stand up to the bully and directly challenge the bully. This requires immense courage and taking huge risks. Bullies are usually smart and pick on people “weaker” than them to minimise the chances of being directly challenged. Direct challenge is very risky as things can go badly if a small kid would challenge a big bully and get beaten up badly. Twelve-year-old Debbie Shaw at a UK school died from injuries received from fighting a bully.
- Develop a buddy system - Bullies rarely strike groups. If your child is being bullied, make sure he or she walks around school with a friend, or is within earshot of a teacher or responsible adult. If someone bullies your kid, have them look the bully in the eye and say, "I don't like your bullying me. Stop it right now."
- Marshall resources to confront the bully – Take stock of the situation by noting exactly how the abuse or bullying is happening. Then find out where you can get help in confronting the bully. In case of school bullying, if talking to the parents or the teacher doesn’t help, talk to the student counsellor, school nurse or any adult who understands and is ready to intervene. At the workplace, if talking to the supervisor doesn’t help, go to the HR people or the union rep or be prepared to take legal action. The case is made stronger if a link can be found between bullying and discrimination on the basis of race, ethnicity, gender, sexual orientation, age or physical disability etc.
Physical bullying - may accompany verbal bullying with kicking, hitting, biting, pinching, hair pulling, or threats of physical harm for kids.
Hazing is another form of sexual bullying. This has been made popular by porn sites and torture scenes at Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq.
Bullying can kill. Bullycide is the term that describes suicide by a person who is a victim of bullying.
This site documents lots of cases, where bullying has led to deaths.
- A high school coach in Georgia knocked a student's eyeball out of its socket to punish the student for fighting with another student.
- In Texas, a 230 lbs teacher tried to restrain a student by placing a14-year-old autistic special education student face down on the floor, by sitting on his shoulders and suffocated him to death because the student did not stay seated in class.
- In a Florida public school, a teacher’s aide, on probation for burglary and cocaine possession, gagged and duct-taped children for misbehaving.
- Thirteen-year-old Jared High, who was brutally assaulted by a known schoolyard bully reported the bullying. Both he and the bully got suspended. Jared became depressed, and committed suicide.
- 12-year-old Natalie Ruddick, in UK, pretended to be ill and stayed home so she wouldn't have to face school bullies. A burglar who broke into their house that day murdered her.
- A boy in Ireland was running away from a bully and was hit by a passing lorry, which killed him.
Does hazing support the idea “Do to others what you want them to do to you”? Secretly perhaps?