In Bullying Definitions

How the Bully Definition Evolved & What It Means Today

bully definition

The term bully is a term that has had various meanings and definitions over the years. The current bully dictionary definition describes a person who uses his or her strength to harm another person who is weaker than he or she is. A person can use the words tyrant, oppressor and tormentor as substitutes for the word bully. When people visualize bullies nowadays, they think of large people who like to step on little people. The term did not always carry such negativity, however. At one point in time, the word bully used to mean something positive. In fact, Theodore Roosevelt created the term “bully pulpit” to describe the White House. The bully pulpit definition referred to a large and “wonderful” place that offered the opportunity to speak to the world. “Bully for you” is another expression that used bully in a positive sense. The term use to mean the same thing as “good to you” back in the Roosevelt era. How did the definition of bully become some distorted? Explore the Bully Definition here….

Bully Definition Changes Over the Years

The term “bully” seems to have German or Dutch origins. Bully seems to have a positive original meaning that stemmed from the words for “friend” and “love.” People used the word bully in an endearing manner at some point until the 1600s and 1700s. Eventually, bully developed a negative definition. The word has had various meanings over the years from terms such as “prostitute defender” and “swashbuckler,” to terms like “tyrannical coward.” The bully definition has kept its “tyrannical coward” meaning ever since it gained it in the late 1700s.

Bully Definition for Kids

Parents must teach their children the bully definition before they enter school. The ones who have not taught their children about the bully in school can still sit down with them today and discuss it. School bullying affects more than 77 percent of schoolchildren. Therefore, children must learn about the “big bad wolf” in school so that they can try to protect themselves from his or her terrorism.

The story of Little Red Riding Hood is an excellent story to use for explaining the definition of bully to a young child. A bully is a person who acts as the big bad wolf in the story acted. This person is usually much bigger and stronger than the victim is, and he or she tries to “blow the victim’s house down” with his or her “strong winds.” The strong winds represent the verbal abuse and the threats that the bully makes to try to get the victim to cave or comply. A high school bully wants to tear down the foundation of confidence and self-esteem that another student has. Therefore, young students should be quite receptive to hearing an explanation of bullying in those terms.

Talking About Bullies With Older Children

Children who are older than seven or eight will most likely understand a definition of bully that does not include a children’s story. A parent could open a conversation with his or her child by asking if anyone has ever said mean things in school. The parent could ask if anyone has ever stolen something from the child or tripped the child as he or she walked. The parent could go on to explain bullies and their behaviors no matter how the child answers. Children who are aware of the characteristics of bullies are likely to report their abuse. They may develop the strength to avoid emotional upset when dealing with bullies, as well.

What Is the Bullied Definition?

Bully is a past-tense term that describes a set of actions that occurred previously. Someone might use the bullied definition while explaining past experiences to a child or relative. A person may use the term bully as he or she is explaining an occurrence to the police, as well. A victim can use the term bullied to describe a wide variety of past actions such as harassment, threatening, teasing, taunting, demanding, demeaning, humiliating and the like. Any painful action that a person inflicts on another person to cause emotional or mental harm is bullying. Therefore, a person who has gone through such things has been bullied.

What Is the Meaning of Bullying?

The world bullying describes the heinous things that bullies do to other people to establish power over them. A wide range of actions could describe bullying. For example, a person who continuously uses a racist term on a person of a different race is bullying that person. Someone who “jokes” about an overweight person’s weight every day is bullying that person. A person who always puts down someone for not having the same amount of money or material things that he or she has is bullying that person. Abusive spouses who tell their wives that they will never find anyone else to love them are bullying them.

The classic depiction of “bullying” used to involve an angry child in the schoolyard who demanded lunch money from the smaller children. While the classic description certainly still rings true, it does not describe all instances of bullying. A bully does not necessarily demand things. He or she can destroy another person’s self-esteem without asking for anything at all.

Types of Bullies

Just as many bullying types exist, many bully types exist. The office bully is one of the worst bullies because he or she affects a victim’s desire to go to work every day. The office bully definition describes a person in the workplace who uses various methods to suppress or torment co-workers or employees. An office bully could be a co-worker, supervisor or a member of upper management. An office bully might promise promotions and incentives to get the victim to worker harder or stay late. The office bully never quite delivers when the victim asks for the reward, however.

The office bully may be a downright verbally abusive person. He or she may belittle the person’s work efforts or call the person names such as lazy or stupid. An office bully could have a gossiping nature, as well. The gossiping bully will pretend to be friends with the worker just to get personal information from him or her. The person will then twist the victim’s personal information into a “more entertaining” story and spread it to other workers in the facility. The gossiping bully is dangerous because he or she can quickly ruin the other person’s reputation.

A domestic bully is a man or woman who terrorizes people inside of their homes. The bully may terrorize a spouse or child. The domestic bully is usually very cunning in that he or she will present a different public image from the image that the spouse and children see. Domestic bullies may use physical violence, verbal abuse, emotional abuse or a mixture of all three to maintain control over the family. Physical violence includes direct contact such as punching, strangling, scratching, pinching and slapping. Verbal abuse includes name-calling, threats, insults, hurtful jokes and the like. Emotional abuse includes actions such as ignoring someone or making that person feel inferior or inadequate. Emotional abuse is a tricky form of abuse that has many faces. An emotionally abused person may not even realize that such abuse exists for years.

Social bullies include high school bullies and bullies that exist within people’s social circles. Peer pressure is a type of bullying in which members of a social circle talk another member into doing something that he or she does not want to do. Peer pressure exists in adults as much as it exists in school-age children. Peer pressure occurs from friends, family members, religious groups and more. Victims of peer pressure often feel as if they will lose their friends or family members if they do not complete the required task.

What to Do About Bullying

Anyone who feels as if he or she is being bullied should seek help immediately. A person should never keep bullying experiences inside because they cause internal damages. Additionally, bullies usually stop when someone exposes their deviousness. Therefore, high school victims should report their bullying experiences to guidance counselors. Adult bullying victims should seek assistance from the local police, Human Resources Department or any party that can intervene. Bullies will try to threaten or plead their way out of exposure, but victims should expose them so they cannot hurt other people.

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