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Body of Essay
Bullying can be a difficult topic to tackle. That is why this bullying essay will help offer an idea of what will comprise a good paper and what potential areas of research to cover within this controversial and popular subject. From developing a good thesis, carrying it throughout body paragraphs, and closing with a brief and concise conclusion, this essay will show what to do to obtain a high grade. The first step before the thesis, the body, and the conclusion, is a unique and informative introduction. This will help lead to an idea of where to start the paper and when all is finished, an abstract can be created, thus putting a successful end to any writing project.
Understanding a Bully
What Makes Others Bully?
Bullying: The Need to Control
Identifying the Four Common Types of Bullying
A. What is Bullying – Definition
B. Types of Bullying – relational, verbal, physical
D. Effects of Bullying
Bullying is an ongoing problem that affects people as children and adults. To stop bullying, people need to understand the various ways to bully and why bullying exists. Bullying makes those that do it feel powerful and look ‘cool’ to others. Yet, bullying can create immense suffering for the victims, sometimes leading to death. This essay covers four types of bullying: relational, verbal, physical, and cyberbullying. It also covers briefly the effects of bullying by providing examples of real bully cases.
Title: Identifying the Four Common Types of Bullying
Essay Hook: Bullying has lead to the suicides of several American youths.
Kids and adults alike have talked about bullying and their experiences. From coworkers acting too aggressively to kids in class being mean, bullying is a common occurrence that has been portrayed in movies, books, and shows to several generations. Although many think they have a good idea of what constitutes bullying, many do not know the various forms of bullying. People can be bullied verbally, physically, online, and in relationships. Intimate partners, friends, and family members can be bullies.
The four different types of bullying that will be discussed in this essay are relational, verbal, physical, and cyberbullying; these types of bullying are often difficult to identify and in covering these topics, it will provide a deeper understanding of bullying and its potential negative impact on both the bully and the person bullied.
What is Bullying
Bullying is defined as hurtful, mean behavior happening continually in any relationship that has an imbalance of strength or power (Zins, Elias, Maher, & Wiggins, 2007). It can take on several forms. These forms may often seem similar. It is important to distinguish each one and understand how they impact a person on the receiving end of the bullying.
Bullying can consist of direct or indirect bullying. “Direct bullying refers to face-to-face physical or verbal confrontations, while indirect bullying is usually described as less visible harm-doing, such as spreading rumors and social exclusion” (Zins, Elias, Maher, & Wiggins, 2007, p. 11). Those that experience direct bullying may be verbally or physically assaulted. Those that experience indirect bullying may be gossiped about. Regardless, direct or indirect bullying can have profoundly negative and long-lasting effects on the person bullied.
Types of Bullying
The first form of bullying is relational bullying and is considered indirect bullying. Relational bullying means bullying with exclusionary tactics, involving deliberate prevention of someone being/joining part of a group (Macklem, 2010). This could be at a game, social activity, or lunch table. A good example of this is when a group of boys at baseball practice decide to go to a fast food place to eat. One person is left to the side, ignored, treated as though he was invisible. Making people feel excluded from a group can lead to feelings of worthlessness and depression.
People suffering from relational bullying may experience mood changes, turn to isolating themselves, or withdraw from peer groups altogether. Although relational bullying can happen with either gender, girls experience this form of bullying more than boys, especially in certain age ranges. “Between eight and eleven years of age, girls continue to use more and more relational aggression. They appear to be choosing the form of aggression that is most hurtful to others, and the type of aggression that is most tolerated by the peer group” (Macklem, 2010, p. 42). Relational bullying does not simply mean excluding someone. It may also entail spreading rumors, sharing secrets and breaking confidences, and recruiting peers to share in the dislike of a target. This form of social manipulation is quite common in grade school and can frequently happen up to middle school.
Bullies that partake in relational bullying may do so to feel power over others and over their intended target. They may dislike the bullying victim and so feel the need to encourage others to dislike the victim as well. Relational bullying also helps a person increase his or her social status among his or her peers. By that person putting someone else down or making someone else look bad, that person looks better in comparison.
The next form of bullying is verbal and is an example of direct bullying. Although there is no evidence of harm done as seen with physical bullying, those that experience verbal bullying state they develop traumatic memories from such events. “Verbal bullying usually takes the form of name-calling, taunting, interrupting, teasing, joking or threatening, intimidating, and humiliating. Victims of verbal bullies are often shy, have low self-confidence, and are chosen because they don’t have friend to defend them” (Ryan, 2012, p. 7-8). Bullies that verbally bully their victims do so because it makes them feel powerful. Like relational bullies, they may tease someone to improve their own social standing and belong with a group.
Verbal bullying can make a bullying victim depressed, socially withdrawn, and can lead to suicide ideation. Those that are verbally bullied may feel as though they have no one to turn to, to alleviate their situation. The best way to deal with verbal bullying, either as a child or as an adult, it to have confidence and learn self-respect. By people understanding and stressing their own personal boundaries, it may help them avoid dealing with a verbal bully.
The third form of bullying is physical. It is direct bullying and is easier to notice than other forms of bullying. Some people assume physical bullying is the most common type of bullying. However, evidence suggests it is the least common. “Many adults characterize most bullying as being physical, but this is a myth. In truth, physical bullying comprises the minority of bullying activity. Both boys and girls much more commonly experience verbal, social, and educational bullying” (Heinrichs & Myles, 2003, p. 25). People experiencing physical bullying are generally physically weaker than the bullies picking on them. They also tend to demonstrate a lack of an assertive personality.
An example of physical bullying is when a kid kicks or scratches another kid one day, and the next day pulls his or her pants down. This repeated act of aggression and physical violence constitutes physical bullying. Physical bullying can lead to potentially serious consequences for the victim such as permanent injury, disability, or even death.
One example of physical bullying that lead to death was the story of Bailey, a 12-year-old male honor student. He was hit in the head several times and experienced seizures that put him in a coma. “Bailey suffered a concussion, broken nose and other injuries when two boys jumped him in recess – one pushing him and the other landing the blows. He started suffering violent seizures causing doctors to put him in a medical coma” (Davies, 2013). Bailey died a short time after, from his injuries.
Physical bullying can be difficult to stop. Measures that can be taken involve gathering evidence and contacting law enforcement. People should never have to endure physical bullying and must be dealt with accordingly. Why physical bullying exists is varied.
Often physical bullies attack their victims because they experience some form of abuse. They may do so simply because they can. Or, they may be peer pressured into attacking a bully victim. Regardless of the reasons, physical bullying is a dangerous form of bullying that should be handled with the proper authorities in order to avoid additional problems from arising.
The final form of bullying is cyberbullying. While cyberbullying may be seen as indirect bullying, it can also take on a form of direct bullying due to harassing behaviors like insults and written attacks being sent online. A person can anonymously blackmail someone, post degrading and offensive posts on various social media platforms, and start pages making fun of a person’s looks. Cyberbullying has become a major issue and has led to the deaths of several teens in the last decade. One notable example is Amanda Todd.
Amanda Todd was a teenage girl who committed suicide because of an anonymous man who harassed her for years, posting topless pictures of Todd for her classmates to see. Aside from being tormented online, she was also physically assaulted by the girlfriend of the boy she slept with and was rushed to the hospital afterward for drinking bleach. Todd made a short video on YouTube detailing her suffering. “On September 7, 2012, Amanda Todd posts a video on YouTube entitled “My Story: Struggling, Bullying, Suicide and Self Harm”. Using queue cards she tells her story of the cyber-bullying she has been exposed to for a long period of time” (Hendricks & Hansen, 2014, p. 17). A month later, in October of 2012 Todd hung herself in her home.
Amanda Todd is just one of dozens of teenage girls and boys on the news that killed themselves because of cyberbullying. It is a serious problem facing today’s youth. How to spot the signs of someone being cyberbullied is if the person spends more time online, appearing anxious or sad afterward. Another is if the person being bullied has difficulty sleeping, wants to stay home, and withdraws from activities he or she used to enjoy. Bullies that engage in this form of bullying do so because it is instant, gratifying, and can be done anonymously. If people wish to combat cyberbullying, they must limit the time the person bullied has online and print out any evidence that could lead to a possible arrest or actions against a cyberbully.
Effects of Bullying
Those that experience bullying may feel the need to commit suicide. They may become bullies themselves as bullying can make a person with low self-esteem feel important and strong. “The main attraction of bullying is that it enhances the bully’s self-image, which is likely to be particularly important for pupils who have a low self-esteem” (Kyriacou, 2003, p. 20). Victims of bullying can develop trust issues with others and have problems socializing. Whatever happened to the victim can then translate to problems in that person’s life from altered performance in school to experiencing mental and physical health problems (Kyriacou, 2003). Bullying can and does have a profound and deep impact on the psyche of the victim.
In conclusion, bullying is a complex issue. It has various forms. Verbal and physical bullying are direct forms of bullying that involve teasing or hitting a bullying victim. Relational and cyberbullying are indirect forms of bullying that consist of isolating someone from a social group or harassing them online. Whatever the form of bullying, it can deeply affect the person bullied. Many that are bullied commit suicide. The ones that do not commit suicide have an altered view of the world. To stop bullying, it is important to recognize the signs, to make bullying a thing of the past, not the present or future.
Davies, K. (2013, March 6). Bailey O’Neill: Boy who died after schoolyard bully attack was punched 3 times in the face and refused to hit back | Daily Mail Online. Retrieved from http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-2289093/Bailey-ONeill-Boy-died-schoolyard-bully-attack-punched-3-times-face-refused-hit-back.html
Heinrichs, R., & Myles, B. S. (2003). Perfect targets: Asperger syndrome and bullying ; practical solutions for surviving the social world. Shawnee Mission, Kan: Autism Asperger Pub.
Hendricks, V. F., & Hansen, P. G. (2014). Infostorms: How to Take Information Punches and Save Democracy. Cham.
Kyriacou, C. (2003). Helping troubled pupils. Cheltenham: Nelson Thornes.
Macklem, G. L. (2010). Bullying and teasing: Social power in children’s groups. New York: Springer.
Ryan, P. K. (2012). Online bullying. New York: Rosen.
Zins, J. E., Elias, M. J., Maher, C. A., & Wiggins, L. (2007). Bullying, victimization, and peer harassment: A handbook of prevention and intervention. Psychology Press.
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The topic of bullying was not so hard to tackle, was it? We hope this bullying essay helps you develop your own amazing and insightful writing. Sure, some tasks can seem daunting, especially if you do not have a guide to help you. But here there are guides and essays that can point you in the right direction. All you need is a little push and some good examples.
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While many parents assume that bullying is a problem confined to middle school or high school, it can begin as early a kindergarten and become firmly seeded in a school culture by the second or third grade.
If you are a parent faced with bullying, you need to take a firm stance so that the behavior is stopped before it becomes a de facto part of a child's school life.
The definition is simple: bullying is any aggressive behavior designed to intimidate or torment.
It can be physical, such as pushing or hitting, or verbal, such as name-calling or spreading gossip. In younger children, bullying can also include exclusion, either by urging others to ostracize an individual or by forming cliques to which others are conspicuously excluded.
While cyberbullying may be less prevalent in younger school children, the same behaviors that govern online bullying are played out in real life.
The statistics are dismaying. According to research published in the journal BMC Public Health, as many as 13 percent of children in kindergarten and elementary school are victims of bullying, while 11 percent admit to being a bully. An additional four percent can be described as victim-bullies, a great many of whom will become bullies in later life as a misguided form of self-protection.
Why Kids Bully
The kids most commonly targeted by bullies are those with a disability, who are obese, or are less adept at schoolwork or making friends.
In order to establish social dominance, a bully will often need little more than an unusual name to target a child for abuse, often under the guise of teasing. Other children, meanwhile, will take part, either because they are eager for social acceptance or fearful of ostracization themselves.
In the end, children will attack the same things that many adults do, namely behaviors, beliefs, or characteristics which stand out and challenge a social order to which person believes he or she is a part.
Fear of the unusual can sometimes lead children to exhibit aggressive behaviors to hide insecurities that they themselves do not understand. Such behaviors may be reinforced by parents who exhibit the same biases or use aggression as a means of dealing with conflict.
What Parents Can Do
Rather than dismissing schoolyard bullying as "a phase" that children will eventually outgrow, parents have the unique opportunity to alter these behaviors by helping young children overcome the very fears, anxieties, and insecurity that place them at risk.
There are six things you can do to help:
- Stay connected with your child. The more you know about your child's classmates and school life, the more likely you will be to spot any changes the child's demeanor or interactions. This includes both the child being bullied and the child who is bullying. Make a point of discussing the events of the day every day, and pay attention to not only what the child says but what he or she may be avoiding in conversation.
- Look for the warning signs. If a child is a victim of bullying, the first warning sign will usually a change in behavior. This may include withdrawing, exhibiting sudden aggression or anger, misbehaving, or being reluctant to go the school. If your child is a bully, the clues may be harder to pick up, but it is not uncommon to hear the bully make disparaging and boastful remarks about others, often without realizing how unkind the behavior is.
- Explain what bullying is. Young children understand that hitting or pushing another child is wrong. Even teasing is something they instinctively know is hurtful. But kids can be both sophisticated and unsophisticated in their approach to these behaviors. On the one hand, they can dismiss teasing as "just kidding around" and, on the other, fail to comprehend how other hurtful behaviors like exclusion can be. Help your child understand bullying in all its forms, both direct and subtle.
- Teach a child empathy. Young children have the unique talent of making connections. Unlike adults, who are able to navigate conflict and justify ill behaviors, kids who are five, six, or seven see action and consequence in a more straightforward way. If your child is a bully, ask how he or she would feel if the shoe were on the other foot. If your child is being bullied, help them understand why some kids misbehave can effectively "take them off the hook" and confirm that they are neither strange nor blameworthy.
- Tell a child what to do if he or she witnesses bullying. Children will often not want to get involved if someone else is being bullied out of fear of reprisal. Teach them how not acting is essentially the same as approving of the behavior. A child should understand that reporting a bully is not "tattling" but merely a way to stop others from getting hurt. Let your child know that he or she should report any such behavior to you or a teacher so that an adult can intervene.
- Lead by example. Many parents do not take bullying seriously enough and will dismiss some behaviors as being "not as bad" as others. Do not allow yourself to be swayed by these arguments. If such behaviors are ignored, young children will believe that they have been given tacit permission to bully. Even things like exclusion can be acted upon by teachers by breaking up groups, pairing kids who don't interact with school projects and regularly changing classroom seating.
As a parent, do not accept that nothing can be done. The greatest opportunity for change is not in high school when social dynamics are set; it's in kindergarten and elementary school when behaviors and personalities are still evolving.
If school officials fail to act, voice your concerns to the parent-teacher association or file a formal complaint with the local school board. Include a detailed outline of the bullying events and any other information that may support your claims. In the end, how you act can determine whether a child is allowed to suffer in silence.
Jansen, P.; Verlinden, M.; Dommisse van-Berkel, A. et al. "Prevalence of bullying and victimization among children in early elementary school: Do family and school neighborhood socioeconomic status matter?"BMC Public School. 2012; 12:494. DOI: 10.1186/1471-2458-12-494.