Bullying: Definition, Please? | Teen Ink

Bullying: Definition, Please?

May 24, 2012
By AriShine GOLD, Norcross, Georgia
AriShine GOLD, Norcross, Georgia
13 articles 0 photos 130 comments

Favorite Quote:
"Whatever you are, be a good one." -Abraham Lincoln

The anti-bullying messages are ubiquitous; this generation is bombarded with campaigns against almost every type of bullying. However, there is a glaring error in the media’s portrayal of pressure and harassment between teenagers.

Here is the typical bullying scenario: one boy is pushing another boy against the lockers, calling him names. Someone else is standing by, watching this happen. Finally, the bystander runs for the help of a teacher, and the teacher quickly disperses the conflict. It is fair to say that this happens at some point, but this is not what usually happens between bully and victim.

Some people fail to understand that bullying can be little things that others might not notice: body language, tone of voice, a disgusted glance. These things don’t seem like a big deal, but a roll of the eyes can pack as much punch as a slap to the face, especially when the victim is repeatedly ostracized using body language. This kind of bullying is much more common, probably because it lacks consequences. Often, this is not even considered actual bullying.

The media typically depicts a brand of bullying that is more severe and outright. This is telling teens that bullying is pushing someone against lockers or sending a text that says, “U R STUPID!” The message adolescents are given about bullying absolves the bullies of more subtle nature. Also, the line between joking and bullying is ambiguous at best. Sometimes, one is unaware that his or her playful teasing is hurtful. When bullying is represented as pushing and shoving, the line between friendly and hostile is displaced, and a roll of the eyes is accepted as innocent.

Children and teens need to be reminded that these little acts of ostracism are not okay. Those subtle remarks are bullying, too. It is the responsibility of the media to at least try to more clearly define what bullying is. Furthermore, teens need to be smarter about the things they do or say. You never know what could be hurtful.

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This article has 1 comment.

on Jul. 6 2012 at 8:01 am
Ha-5-rika SILVER, Visakapatnam, Other
9 articles 7 photos 62 comments

Favorite Quote:
Life is what your thoughts make it.
Happiness, success and the greatest of achievements are nothing if you don't have someone to share it with.
A life lived for others is a life worthwhile - Albert Einstein.

You know, you are right! Those little things, small gestures and words are what break hearts and make one feel they are useless or ugly or bad. We need to be careful about what we say. After all, we can't take our words or actions back, can we?