Sender: Meilda Rassias
Mother of two VERY active and cheeky boys
Victoria, Australia

Even though bullies have been in society for as long as the human history itself, our understanding on what kinds of acts are considered “bullying” has just begun to be discussed and addressed seriously. As a mother of two young boys, I feel the need to know more about this issue. So I did some research on the subject, and I was surprised by some of the facts I found.
Do you know that bullying behavior can start from a very young age of 18 months old?! It is true such young child has not developed a cognitive understanding of what bully is all about. Babies and toddlers may be involved in pushing, hitting or not wanting to share their toys with their siblings or friends. But the problem comes when parents also do not recognize that such behavior is actually bullying and thus, diminishing the matter as something petty. We often heard such remarks as, “That’s just how little kids play.” Nonetheless a non-bully child will eventually grow up as bully if they do not experience clear boundaries and limits set by their parents.
The Department of Education and Early Childhood Development (DEECD) in Victoria, Australia, defines that bullying occurs when one or more people deliberately and repeatedly upset or hurt another person, damage their property, reputation or social acceptance. Bullying can come in many forms as well:
- DIRECT PHYSICAL BULLYING: being hit, tripped, kicked, pinched, etc.
- DIRECT VERBAL BULLYING: being called names, teased, put down, racist remarks, etc.
- PYSCHOLOGICAL BULLYING: being threatened, stalked, gestures, etc.
- SOCIAL BULLYING: being ignored, having rumors spread about you, excluding someone, etc.
- SEXUAL BULLYING: picking on someone because of their sexual orientation, unwanted touching and brushing against someone, etc.
- CYBER BULLYING: insulting someone in chat rooms, sending cruel or threatening emails or text messages (SMS); using social media on web to spread rumors or wrong information about someone, etc.

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