Bullying is systematic: they target the same person, or same group, or same kind of people, over and over again, over a period of time. For example, it is not the same if I call you poopy pants one day because you pooped your pants (teasing), than if I brand you poopy pants for the rest of the school year or the rest of your school life because of that event (bullying). Bullying also includes spreading and maintaining bad rumours about a person or leaving the person out of the social life of the environment on purpose and trying to prevent others from accepting the person, just for sake of power, not because the victim was bad or a threat. The bully will often justify the behavior.
Bullies tend to be cowards, since the bully has more power than the victim or makes it seem that way, or tries to make it that way. Teasers may feel empathy for their victims if the victim shows itself as hurt and may stop, but bullies do not.
Teasing can be playful and may not be repetitive. On the other hand, bullying is repetitive and intends to cause harm. There has to also be the consideration of that bullying is NOT always teasing. Vice versa, teasing may or may not be bullying, as it depends on the ondoer's intentions. I think teasing comes a lot in the boy's locker rooms, and the early stages of schooling such as secondary and elementary school. But, then again, both can appear anywhere. Bullying also indicates other non-teasing behaviors such as exclusion, shoving, exposure of inappropriate pictures of the person, and beating someone up. I know because I am a victim of child abuse and I was bullied and teased by my aunt after my dad's death.
Bullying can be an ongoing and repetitive action, and it can be verbal, physical or emotional. Bullying is targeted, and the person who is bullying might be doing it because they have problems at home, or they aren’t in the best mindset, and they feel the need to let it out on someone weaker than them. Whereas someone who is teasing might be doing it for fun, or might think it is funny or “a joke”. Teasing can be a part of bullying, but they are two completely different things. Teasing between friends is like making jokes, or playing around.
Teasing should never be hurtful. Friends who are close with each other can tease one another, as long as they stay within boundaries and don’t play on people’s insecurities. It’s best to reserve teasing for people you’re really close with, in my opinion. This may sound a bit extreme, but people you don’t know all that well will feel uncomfortable telling you when your words are hurtful instead of funny. That means you might become a bully without knowing it. When it comes to bullying, you never know how much your ‘joke’ will actually affect the other person. So always be mindful of what you’re saying, and don’t hesitate to let other people know when they go too far!
It's really more of a perspective kind of thing, I guess. Everyone thinks and feels differently about these things. For me personally, I consider teasing to be amongst friends or loved ones. A playfulness that has no true intention of being harmful or hurtful. However, bullying, in my view, includes purposefully being spiteful towards another person, with the intention of wanting to hurt, humiliate or belittle. If someone says something or does something to you that hurts your feelings, then maybe communicating that to the other person would help clear the air and get reassurance from them. If said person denies or rejects your hurt feelings then that, to me, is bullying. There's no respect there or compassion.
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