What is bullying?

On this page:

What is bullying?

Bullying is repeated, unwanted, aggressive behaviour that involves a real or perceived power imbalance.  Kids who bully use their power – such as physical strength, knowing something embarrassing, or popularity – to control or harm others. 

Bullying can happen anywhere, at any time, and can be verbal, physical or emotional. It can happen in person or online, and it can be obvious or hidden.

  • Bullying is deliberate - harming another person intentionally.
  • Bullying involves a misuse of power in a relationship.
  • Bullying is usually not a one-off - the behaviour is repeated, or has the potential to be repeated, over time.
  • Bullying involves behaviours that can cause harm - it is not a normal part of growing up.

Read more About Bullying, including information on types of bullying, cyberbullying, the effects of bullying, and who's involved in bullying.