Tuesday, February 15, 2011

What is Bullying?

        Exactly what is bullying? It's good to have an idea what constitutes bullying behavior so one can recognize it when it happens. We shouldn't dismiss this behavior as "just kid stuff" when it is in reality harmful. 

        A good place to find a definition is from the school system as they deal with this behavior on a daily basis. The Polk County School System in Florida defines bullying behavior as needing to meet three criteria: 

        1. A behavior must be unwanted, offensive, threatening, insulting,
            humiliating, or interferes with the individual’s school performance
            which results in the victim feeling stressed, injured, or threatened.  
       2. There must be an imbalance of power between the victim and the
       3. The behavior must be repeated.

        This seems to me to be a comprehensive and helpful definition.

        In future blogs I'll look at other facets of bullying and what we can do about it.

Meanwhile, if you have any thoughts or experiences with bullying, I would appreciate hearing from you.