With every person we talk to about bullying we get a different definition of what it is. There seems to be some difficulty defining what bullying is and what it isn’t. Norwegian researcher Dan Olweus defines bullying as when the person is
“exposed, repeatedly and over time, to negative actions on the part of one or more other persons.”
He defines negative actions as “when a person intentionally inflicts injury or discomfort upon another person, through physical contact, through words or in other ways.”
The following are markers that may help determine if an act of aggression is actually bullying or simply the result of conflict between two parties.
1. Imbalance of Power
The bully can be older, bigger, stronger, more verbally adapt, higher up on the social ladder, of a difference race, or of the opposite sex. Sheer numbers of kids banded together to bully can create this imbalance. Bullying is not sibling rivalry, nor is it fighting that involves two equally matched kids who have conflict.