While there is an animal hunting definition of stalking, the real question here is what the harassment type of stalking means, and what is the real stalking meaning. Stalking meaning is basically that stalking is a crime of power and control, with the intention of intimidating the victim. This can be done directly (in person, usually face to face or within sight), or indirectly (gifts, correspondence (paper and electronic, property damage). These methods are further detailed below.
Stalking Meaning and Definitions: What is the meaning of stalking?
What is Physical Stalking?
Stalking is harassment that is repeated and unwanted by the victim. There are unfortunately many ways a person can be stalked, including:
- Regular unwanted contact, like visits to the victims home, workplace or other public spaces. This contact can also be via telephone or mail, or electronic (see Cyberstalking).
- Loitering near the victim – nothing is said or done, but the constant physical presence of the stalker can be disturbing for the victim. This can be as simple as driving past the victims house, or standing where the victim can see them.
- Sending of gifts – while it is nice to receive gifts, when you do not want to get anything at all from someone, even a bunch of flowers can upset you. Some gifts can have hidden meanings, including sinister ones.
- Theft or damage to the victims car, home, workplace or property is an escalated form of stalking harassment.
- It is not only the victim that can be harassed. Close friends and family can find themselves experiencing the same harassment, including threats to harm those close to (and protective of) the victim.
- The victim can also be directly threatened by the stalker, with threats to harm, sexually assault or kill the victim
- The final escalation of stalking actually branches into a different category of crimes – assault. Stalking can get to the point where the victim ends up being physically and/or sexually assaulted.
Stalking Meaning: What is Cyberstalking?
Cyberstalking is similar to physical or offline stalking, in that it is repeated harassment of the victim. This harassment takes place in the electronic world, but may be coupled with more physical stalking. Common methods include posting false accusations or defamatory facts online, threatening behavior, monitoring social sites and IP address, viral attacks to PCs and other electronic devices, identify theft, malicious ordering of items in the victims name (such as pornographic items), and encouraging others to join the harassment.
Stalking Meaning: Types of Stalkers
An impression that many people have of stalkers is they are typically a ‘crazy’ who comes from nowhere to harass the victim. In fact, over three quarters of stalkers are known by their victims, and the majority of those were current or former intimate partners. Admittedly, many of the stalkers do exhibit ‘crazy’ behavior, but it is usually minor neuroses or emotionally driven.
Studies have identified at least six major categories of stalker, some of which stalkers progress through in the course of their ‘relationship’ with the victim:
- Incompetent Suitors – Some people lack the social skills to court someone effectively, and instead drive the victim away by harassment behaviors.
- Intimacy Seekers – The stalker believes the victim to be their soul-mate, and will do anything to establish an intimate, loving relationship with the victim.
- Rejected Stalkers – After having achieved intimacy with a victim, once the relationship has ended, the rejection spurs the stalker into action.
- Resentful Stalkers – These stalkers have a grievance (real or imagined) against the victim, usually to distress or frighten the victim.
- Predatory Stalkers – This type of stalker operate closer to the animal hunting definition, spying on and tracking the victim with the intent of preparing and executing an attack (physical and/or sexual)
- Vengeance Stalkers – Also known terrorist stalkers, these stalkers do not want (or have had) an intimate relationship with the victim. They just want to get a message (personal or political) across in a harassing and threatening way.
Effects of Stalking and Stalking Meaning to the Victim
But what does stalking mean for the victim? Stalking is a type of assault, albeit mental or psychological in nature, which can force the victim to change their daily lives to try and avoid the harassment, including changes of home, work or contact methods (phone numbers, etc). All of this can lead to a sense of isolation by the victim, which is often what the stalker wants.
Is stalking a form of bullying? It can be in a variety ways. So, what does bullying mean? Bullying is aggressive behavior with the use of force or pressure in order to abuse or intimidate others. You may find you need to understand what does bullying mean in order to identify it correctly and initiate prevention within your child’s school or community networks. Another way of clarifying what does bullying mean is the following bullying definition ” undesirable, aggressive conduct among children that includes a real or perceived power imbalance”.
By understanding the difference between bullying and stalking and what does stalking mean and what does bullying mean you have put yourself on the beginning of the road to ultimate safety from stalkers and bullies.
It is important to understand what is the meaning of stalking and what does bullying mean and help others spread the word on what is meaning of stalking and how to defeat it now!