Bullying

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7/17/13

Bullying is Subjective | Mr Bullyproof

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Bullying is Subjective
by Mr Bullyproof | Follow Him on Twitter Here What are your definitions of bullying? Are those definitions useful to you? One of the major problem schools have in dealing with bullying is in how they define it. It’s not just a paper exercise in thinking up labels, it makes a massive difference as to whether the organisation takes action as result of an incident or not. If you have a child who is being bullied at school, the school will only help them if the teachers believe that whatever has taken place counts as bullying. Will a teacher take action because one child sneers at another? It not only depends on whether a teacher believes the child but also whether the teacher considers sneering to be bullying. This is one of the reasons why schools are so bad at dealing with bullying. Currently, 50% of children have at least one experience of being bullied every school term yet 86% of teachers have not seen any bullying in the last 12 months. (Source: Respectme annual conference November 2009). Bullying is subjective. It means different things to different people. To become bullyproof you must accept this completely. You cannot allow other people to decide whether you are being bullied or not. You are the only person who gets to decide. About a third of all the enquiries I get include a phrase like this: “I’m not sure if this is considered as bullying but….” Many parents who call me are concerned that their situation might not be ‘serious enough’ for me to deal with. Perhaps I won’t consider what is happening as bullying. To me, if someone feels that they are being bullied then they are. My definition of bullying is worded to allow for the subjective nature of bullying. It is also a useful definition as it has a subtle empowering quality for my clients: “Bullying is a parasitical exchange, where one person gains a benefit from hurting...
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