Bullying is one of the most prevalent issues trying to be addressed and dealt with in our society every day. It is a major problem that has been evident for centuries. However, a common misconception is that bullying is only found in the school yards or among teenagers. In reality, some of the worst bullying actually occurs in the older generation. When childhood bullies have grown up and transitioned into what can be called the adult bully, it can be equally as hard, or even harder for their victims to deal with. Adult bullies are found everywhere, but the most prevalent types who are heard about are the workplace bullies and bullying on the college campus. The victims of these older bullies still feel the same emotional and sometimes physical effects of the abuse. In researching the topic of adult bullying, I found it is just as harmful and widespread as bullying among teens and children. This essay will shed some light on exactly what bullying is, why people continue to bully, the different types of adult bullies and where they are most commonly found, as well as ways to handle the adult bully.
Bullying can be defined in many different ways. One of the most effective descriptions I read was “ Bullying is the aggressive behaviour arising from the deliberate intent to cause physical or psychological stress to others.” (Randall 71-83) This definition covers the main fact that bullying can be physical or psychological, but in both cases the bully is aiming to wound the victim in some way. There are many reasons why people may choose to bully others. Many bullies feel some sort of superiority or strength from knocking others down. Some bully to try to fit in or feel control. In all cases however, the aggression usually began as a child and carried over into adulthood. Children who developed aggressive behaviour when they were younger from such things as parenting style, neglect, or abuse, often times grow up to be damaged adults.“For many, the only self-esteem they can accrue, comes from the aggressive manipulation of others.” (Randall 71-83) In several cases, it is also the childhood victim who becomes the adult bully. Adults who were bullied as children often take the pain with them into adulthood and it comes out as aggression towards others. “These bullies are often aware of their behaviour, but unable to stop it.” (Randall 71-83)
Adult bullying occurs every day all around us. The office cubicle replaces the classroom, the dorm room replaces the playground, and the neighbourhood replaces the school yard. However, the most talked about location for adult bullying in recent news has been on the college campus. With the suicide of a young student at Rutgers, as a direct result of bullying, fresh in everyone’s minds, bullying at universities is a hot topic being discussed. Although it is not as easily noticed, bullying does not disappear after high school as some may think. “Harassment or bullying on a college campus is often not as easily detectible as it is in an elementary or secondary school, in large part because students live more independently. In some cases, the victim may be unwilling to come forward for fear of being perceived as less than adult or exacerbating an already difficult situation.” (Jones) Since university bullying is not as easily seen, it is not given as much attention as bullying in the younger generations. However, bullying does not cease to exist once a student enters college. In fact, 27.5 % of college students reported seeing one college student bullied by another at least once or twice, and 18.7 % report having bullied another college student at least once. (McDonald) There are many different types of bullying seen on the college campus. Some of these forms of bullying include hazing as well as sexual bullying and harassment. These forms of college bullying are now being seen as more predominant issues in our society after multiple school...
References: 1) Randall, Peter. Adult Bullying Perpetrators and Victims. New York, NY: Routledge, 1997. 71-83. Print.
5) McEvoy, Alan. "Teachers who Bully Students:" (2005): n. pag. Web. 8 Nov 2010. <http://www.stopbullyingnow.com/teachers%20who%20bully%20students%20McEvoy.pdf>
6) Ryner, Hoel,Cooper, Charlotte,Helge,Cary L
10) Randall, Peter. Bullying in Adulthood:Assessing the bullies and their Victims. New York, NY: Taylor & Francis, 2001. Print.
13) Field, Time. Bully in Sight: How to predict, resist, challenge and combat workplace bullying . Oxfordshire, UK: Wessex Press, Wantage,Oxfordshire, 1996. 56-199. Print.
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