1. Reggie
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    Reggie I Like 'Em hot "N Spicy Contributor

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    Adult Bulllying and Parant Seperation

    Discussion in 'Research' started by Reggie, May 21, 2011.

    I heard many times that people often bully others in school. Do people bully adults too outside the school? In addition, do adults bully other adults like those that kids would be bullied in class? I had been doing research over this, but all I could find is people as either kids or teenagers being bullied mostly in school. The only thing I read and heard is that most adults are bullied physiologically than physically. I do not often see many adults being bullied, even though they are not in college or in high school. My question is, what are some reasons why adults are bullied as exposed to kids being bulled? I am trying to flesh out my character about a 17-year old teenager (though he is considered an adult since he graduated already), being picked on by his used to be friends, and this continues to go on until the second act of my story.

    I am looking for a realistic reason as to why people are always bullying my main character. He is a timid person, but I am not sure if that would be a cause of adult bullying. In my story, many people the main character’s age were his friends, and then they turned themselves away from him and started making fun of him. He is now lonely and all he has is his father. What are some reasons why they would turn their backs away from him and start bullying him?

    I also have another question about parent separation. My main character’s parents separated because they could not solve or manage conflicts. This is mainly because the father treats the main character different from the character’s brother. Therefore, they both end up splitting up. The father takes the main character to California with him while the mother keeps the main character’s brother. Is this a reasonable situation? Are there any other possible reasons why the two separate?
     
  2. ChickenFreak
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    ChickenFreak Contributing Member Contributor

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    I think that you may be asking the question backwards. In my opinion, bullying is about the dysfunctional needs and desires of the bullies more than it's about the characteristics of the victim. The victim must be suitable, but "suitable" depends on the bullies.

    What do your bullies want? Do they want social position, a feeling of superiority, a feeling of strength, an opportunity to control, an opportunity to inflict pain, or fear, or doubt?

    In junior high and high school, I think that a lot of kids are defining who they are, and the simmering soup of adolescent insecurity means that many are defining themselves as what they are _not_. They want to define themselves as Not Geeks, so they lash out at the geeks. They want to be fashionable, so they lash out at the unfashionable. They want to be popular, so they attack the unpopular.

    In adulthood, there's still a good bit of that "he's what I don't want to be - attack!" bullying, but I think that other motivations come up with a higher frequency. Control, for example - the club president who sets a lot of bureaucratic rules for no better reason than the fact that he can. Social hierarchy - not that that doesn't happen plenty in adolescents, too. The desire to feel strong. The desire to feel weak - this one sounds strange, but a certain kind of "girl bullying" can be about who's the delicate flower that needs all the attention and pampering.

    So who are your bullies? How are their adult lives working out? What are their frustration? What are their fears? That will determine who they'll bully, and when you know that, you can make your main character that person.

    ChickenFreak
     
  3. Trilby
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    Trilby Contributing Member Contributor

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    Bullying goes on all the time in the work place.
    Many people go to tribunals for being bullied at work - policemen, teachers, office workers etc I don't think they are any exceptions.

    Sometimes the bully targets someone and turns all his little yes men (better her than me, thinkers) against his chosen victim.

    A bullying husband/father can and will hit his wife or child somewhere the bruises and scars cannot be seen - where it will be hidden by clothing.

    Belittling remarks are a form of bullying, chipping away at a persons confidence - you must have witnessed that among adults.
     
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  4. teacherayala
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    teacherayala Contributing Member

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    Bullying is seen as most prevalent in middle school and then it is seen as kind of diminishing in impact somewhat in high school. (But it doesn't mean it actually goes away entirely--just that some people, depending on the high school, learn to grow up a little and kids learn how to take it better. They tend to keep the bullying issue to themselves and not talk about it as much as in middle school.

    Among girls, bullying tends to be related to gossip, rumors, social isolation, undermining confidence in beauty and intelligence.

    Among guys, bullying tends to be more physical and is usually targeted for those who are different physically in some way. Yes, a kid that is quiet might be a target for bullying. A particularly vulnerable place is in the gym locker room where adults might tend to give them more "space," unknowingly putting the victims in a very vulnerable situation. Bullying sometimes is done in packs.

    Psychological bullying also happens for all. When I was in high school senior, a rather beefy girl threatened to beat me up in the parking lot outside school. My crime? Having the same last name as another student who had a longer time being at that particular high school. I was new to the school, so I was fair game.

    There's also sexual harassment, sometimes boy-boy and sometimes boy-girl. This carries lasting implications into later lives as they may struggle with their own sexuality as adults, depending on the severity of the bullying.

    Adults can also be bullies. They can choose to form their own little circles and exclude others. They might not be outright mean about it, but they'll invite their friends to parties in front of the victim without inviting the victim. They'll gossip/spread rumors. In guy circles, they will make undermining jokes and then guffaw with the guys at the victim's expensive, then slapping him on the back and saying it's just a joke. The victim feels obliged to laugh along. Sometimes there will be a prank or two. Sometimes bosses will bully their workers, depending on the job. In a competitive work force, people will say nasty things to each other or sabotage projects.

    In terms of traits that would definitely cause a target for a 17 year old boy would be 1. to have a touch of a learning disability or 2. to look physically weak in some way. 3. to have some small disfigurement 4. to be struggling with sexuality. Quiet and timid is sometimes all you have to be to be targeted, depending on the bully, but these things listed above will many times affect a kid's experience at school. Again, this depends on the school and whether the environment is tolerant of difference or not. I work in an international school, so bullying due to homosexuality would not be tolerated by the high school students. When we did a survey and informally questioned them about bullying, most of them said that they would say something if they felt that someone had made a mean comment or had been bullying in some way. They are very tolerant of homosexuality as a lifestyle, so they wouldn't bully for that reason.
     
  5. Leonardo Pisano
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    Leonardo Pisano Active Member

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    Bullying is an extreme form of dominance. Victims are usually weak in defence, either by their social position, (social) behaviour or by some appearance that make them weird - or at least different. (the latter is I think more relevant in kids). So, bullying is by default very cowardly. In some extreme sexual appetites, dominance also plays a role, both submissive and dominance roles. Trilby's explanation on "belittling remarks" is also a good point: can also hurt tremendously. Google research suggestions: "(sexual) harassment" ; "domestic violence" ; "sex slave".

    HTH
     
  6. mammamaia
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    mammamaia nit-picker-in-chief Contributor

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    as noted in all the examples above, bullying occurs at all ages, among all kinds of humans, for all kinds of reasons... and among other species, as well...
     

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