What is Bullying

What is Bullying?

Bullying is a behaviour that causes hurt or harm to another person by use of power and control. Everyone's experience of bullying is different, bullying can cause harm in one instance just as much as it can on several.

Spiral are currently working with young people to understand their definition of bullying, so we are not using a term created by adults who are not in their situation.

What is Bullying

Bullying can lead to long term mental health problems.  The effects of bullying do not leave when you leave the workplace or school, or turn your laptop or phone off.  The ongoing effects of bullying can cause depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, feelings of anger, leading to serious short term and long-term effects on the individual.

People that bully are acting out a behaviour. There can be many reasons for this; learnt behaviour, coping mechanism, experiencing bullying themselves, lack of awareness on how it can affect a person, for their own gain.

Many people associate bullying with something that happens in our youth.  Although bullying can be an issue in our youth, it can occur at any age and at any time in our life.

Due to Covid-19 young people are have increased anger, anxiety, and low mood. These can all be factors that lead to bullying behaviour or becoming a target of bullying.

Types of Bullying


Pushing, kicking, tripping, any kind of unwanted or force full contact.


Name calling, jokes or offensive remarks about a person's; gender, religion, appearance, socioeconomic status, ethnicity.


Name calling, jokes or offensive remarks about a person's; gender, religion, appearance, socioeconomic status, ethnicity.


Excluding others from a group, spreading lies, rumours, exaggerated stories.


Sending pictures, videos, messages using an electronic device.


Using threats to intimidate others.

Mate Crime

Mate crime is a hidden form of disability hate crime, where vulnerable people, such as those with autism, are bullied or manipulated by people they consider to be friends.

Effects of Bullying

Adults and young people

Anxiety, depression, time off work/school, isolation, withdraw, anger which can be directed towards themselves or people around, long term mental health problems, problems with physical health, self-harm, substance misuse.

Family Members

Feelings of failure, isolation with not knowing what to do, develop an obsession worrying about the situation which can lead to raised stress levels, feelings of anger, leading to further issues.


Large staff turnover, un-happy working environment, financial costs – covering sickness, legal cost, impact on company’s reputation, reduced productivity.

how to get help

If you or someone you know are experiencing any of the above you can contact Spiral for confidential support.

You can complete a referral form online, or request one to be sent by email or post. Spiral also welcomes referrals from other GP’s and other organisations.

Once the referral form has been handed in, you will be contacted within fifteen working days to arrange the first meeting.

You can call Spiral on 01228 642641 to ask any questions. If no one answers your call, leave a voice mail, text message, or email and someone will contact you as soon as they are available.

Get in touch