Identify a Bully

Edited by Nerissa Avisado, Anonymous, Eng, Lynn and 4 others

Don't underestimate bullying. It is widespread and it is happening everywhere – at school, the playground, and even in workplaces and homes. It is inflicting pain on the victims and can have overwhelming repercussions that you may not care to think of or entertain. Some of the victims may even resort to suicide or murderous acts to get even. These are not exaggerated; take a look back at some of the most gruesome violent acts in the recent past. You wouldn't want your child or yourself in that position. The good news is, you can do something about it. Start with knowing how to identify a bully.

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Age does not mellow skilled bullies or those who have not managed to overcome their bullying through the years. They, later on, bring this to the workplace. By this time, they have perfected their bullying style and tactics that work to control others to gain power and personal success. Many adopt the skillful combination of charm and aggression to help them achieve their goals in terms of career advancement. If you want to meet these bullies, you need to know who they are.

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What is the value of being able to identify a bully? It helps you avoid them or stop them if you know how to. If you have a kid who is being bullied in school, you can report the bullying to the proper authorities. You can also teach your child how to react or how not to react to the bullying. It will never be easy, especially with kids, but it is doable. For adults who want to help, finding them is easy; you need not put in too much effort to find them because they stand out like a sore thumb. They are very visible. Similarly, adults are not spared in workplaces. You need to spot them before they are able to lure you into their den, where you will become their supper.

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Here are ways to spot them in your midst.

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Identifying the School and Workplace Bullies

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    They stand out, as they often get into trouble.
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    Bullies, or those with the tendency to be a bully, are those who noticeably get into arguments, often with the authorities, and particularly with teachers in the schools. If you see someone arguing with a teacher a lot, it can be an indicator that the kid involved is a bully. They do not like to take directions from anyone, even their teachers. At work, a bully will also not take criticism from co-workers, and sometimes not even from the boss. This often gets them into trouble, and they may get placed in detention, suspended, or expelled. At work, sanctions can range from warnings to demotions, and at worst, being fired from the job.
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    They are loud, and they throw verbal abuse at their victims.
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    Bullies often use verbal abuse and cheap talk to tear down and undermine people. This is the case whether bullying happens in school or at work. Bullies enjoy it when you are demoralized or you react to their "strategy." Therefore, the best thing to do is to walk away and not let them see how you are affected by it all. If you are aiming for a promotion, your negative reaction can successfully take you out of the race; so don't react in the way they want.
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    Bullies are "charming" as they use charm and seduction to recruit cliques.
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    A bully usually manipulates victims, using emotional and even financial leverage to get them to support the bully. This is how bullies get others to obey them. They get accepted by charming their victims and by offering benefits such as friendship (for the popular or those in position), protection, or advancement in their work or career that can also provide their cliques with power and financial rewards (if this happens in a workplace). What the victim fails to recognize is that the bullies will only deliver these promises if it suits or benefits them.
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    Bullies are intimidating.
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    They use verbal aggression as a weapon. When the bullies fail to "recruit" the victim in their cliques, bullies can resort to verbal aggression. This works to intimidate the victims into compliance. Bullies are inclined to use angry or even violent outbursts as a way to break defenses, much like a weapon. They may threaten them or use guilt and shame to coerce them into obeying, like it is the victim's sense of duty. Fighting back or resisting generally leads to the victim's further pain and embarrassment.
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    Bullies are threatening.
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    They demonstrate physical power as another weapon. It is easy for a big, burly type to be a bully as people around them get easily intimidated by their presence. Bullies will sometimes use this obvious physical strength and advantage to attain their selfish, personal goals. Thus, he or she will try his best to maintain such image of strength even vision and leadership. They get very insecure when his or her motives are exposed. This is why manipulation and doing things in an underhanded manner is second nature. If not addressed or managed, bullies can take on these tendencies and skills for life. Bullies in the school can also be bullies in the workplace, and in life, in general.
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    Bullies can be products of broken and/or violent homes.
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    Bullies are most likely victims of violence in their own homes. That is why they feel the need to channel their pent-up energies and anger some way, someplace else on people they perceive as weaker and defenseless. Thus, they have the strong need to dominate and also to subdue other kids younger or smaller than them. They are irked by those students who seem to have a more secure and enviable life. If you or your child project that image, be ready to tackle these bullies.
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Other Weapons that Bullies Use

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    Skilled bullies can mask their real emotions and intentions.
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    They can be very scheming and mischievous. They can put on a really good act, so that you will come to trust, even respect them. You will never know their true colors until you have allowed them to enter your life deeply, to the effect that they are already interfering with your life. Their intentions are always guarded and are often self-serving. Many times, these are even harmful to others.
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    Master bullies build alliances and recruits with political gamesmanship.
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    A bully is helpless alone and he knows that. This is why bullies will strategically build their power base by developing alliances and by recruiting those whom they can easily subdue tactically by intimidating them in any way – physical strength, power, or charm. They may be the type who will go the extra mile to gather damaging information that they can use to undermine anyone who will not support, or maybe even blocks, their mischievous plots against others. They will use this to weaken opponents and gain control of the playground or the company, as the case may be.
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    They dangerously resort to mind games to distort others' thoughts.
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    Bullies masterfully create delusional thoughts about those around them. This is a way they can recruit or manipulate others. Consequently, they make use of a lot of half-truths, rumors, misstatements and hearsay to his or her purpose. These are done to intentionally distort facts in order to confuse and mislead target victims.
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    Bullies feed on other people's fear.
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    Bullies can smell fear, just like sharks smell blood. Showing fear is therefore something they feed on and they make you their target. If you want to fight them, overcome your fear first. The "if you can't beat 'em, join 'em" mentality can get you into more trouble. Being a cohort of a bully does not really spare you from his anger. Worse, you will also find yourself being entangled with the authorities. The bully may even try to use you to justify or cover up his mistakes. It will not be hard to make the authorities believe, especially if you are often seen together. You are also likely to earn his enemies.
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Identify a Bully: Warning Signs that Parents should be Vigilant of

In the past few years, there have been several news reports about teenagers who committed suicide because of bullying. One excellent example is the bullying of a young girl from Florida, Rebecca Sedwick. Rebecca suffered from so-called "aggravated stalking". Suicide is just one of the adverse results of bullying.

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There is no doubt that bullying is a very alarming phenomenon. As a matter of fact there are approximately 160,000 kids who skip their classes each and every day because they are afraid that someone from school might attack or intimidate them. What also makes bullying very alarming is the fact that the victims are getting younger and younger, and it has become more rampant and aggressive than before.

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Indeed, parents need to be very vigilant, especially if they have teenage kids. They have to be alert of the warning signs and they should know what to do if they find out that their children are victims of bullying.

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The Warning Signs

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    If the child can't explain why his or her money, toys, school supplies or any of the stuff that he or she brings to school, are missing.
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    If the child can't explain why he or she has physical marks, such as scrapes, bruises, or cuts.
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    If the child's belongings are damaged.
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    If the child doesn't want to ride the school bus.
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    If the child doesn't want to attend classes anymore or do school activities.
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    If the child suddenly became withdrawn, sullen, shows signs of being lonely or has become evasive.
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    Parents should do something if they notice that their child doesn't want to go home or go to school alone, or if the child suddenly becomes clingy.
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    If the child shows a remarkable change in personality and/or behavior.
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    If the child shows too much sadness, anxiety, or anger, or becomes very moody or depressed, and the mood lasts for a long period of time without a known cause.
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    If the child always experiences nightmares, can't sleep, wets the bed, or cries before sleeping.
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    If the child starts bullying younger kids or his or her siblings.
    As explained by child health experts, there are a lot of victims of bullying who become bully themselves.
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    If the eating habits of the child change.
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    If the child opts to reach home first to use the restroom.
    According to reports about bullying, among the most common places where bullying occurs are bathrooms in schools and parks, due to the fact these locations are not adult-supervised.
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    If the child is ravenous whenever he or she gets home.
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    If the child's friends suddenly decreased or if he or she doesn't like to mingle with other kids his or her age.
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    If the child's grades suddenly drop.
    Child psychiatrists have determined that victims of bullying can't concentrate and focus well.
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    If the child talks about being helpless or acts as if he or she wants to die.
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Tips, Tricks and Warnings

  • Don't be surprised if the bully doesn't fit the bully stereotype. It is so typical to think of the bully as the boorish-looking guy, the tomboy, or the biggest classmate. The bullies, more often than not, are those that do not fit the usual stereotype of a bully. They can be smaller, but with a wily, sneaky mind. They can be the most popular, the prettiest, or the daughter or son of a violent parent. Really, bullies have many faces.
  • Catch them red-handed during recess. Know that in school, a lot of bullying takes place during recess or in places where authority is not visible. Therefore if you would like to catch the bully in action, try looking in the places where the bullies feel supreme. If you are a student who can easily fall prey to these bullies, you may find it hard to totally ditch these places. However, you can always prepare in advance, knowing when they will be around and how they will try to bully you. If you are smart, ask your parents or teachers to catch them right when they are starting it.
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Questions and Answers

Why would a bully want to meet his or her victim?

The best way to enact a mischievous intent to someone is when it is done physically, so bullies need to meet their victims in order to put their plans into action. Without having an interaction with his or her victim, the bully cannot follow through, and the damaging effect to the one being bullied will not receive its maximum potential. The bully will always find ways to inflict pain on his or her victims, and they know that just by meeting their victims that they can create discomfort to them. Therefore, it would be worth meeting them personally.

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Interpersonal interaction with the victims or potential victims can also provide a way for the bullies to devise new and creative ways to pester the ones they're bullying. Additionally, meeting the victims may mean more opportunities to extort money and other things from victims.

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A bully might want to meet with their victim so that they can talk to them about their behavior. By a bully meeting their victim they will get insight into the victims life so that it can change the way that they act as a person/bully towards the victim.

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Categories : Relationships

Recent edits by: Robbi, Jmgf, estrella sacragon

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