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A Psychologist's Thoughts on Clinical Practice, Behavior, and Life

Diagnosing Bullying

Though all agree that bullying is bad, its complexity and that of the victim are often downplayed. In fact, bullies may primarily be sadistic, depressed, or anxious; and victims may primarily be submissive, provocative, or masochistic. Varying teacher and family dynamics exist for each, ranging from fear and helplessness, to parents who gain vicarious satisfaction from their child's asocial behavior. Successful intervention requires an accurate diagnosis of the underlying dynamics and that both school and family share the same goal, which are often not easy. Ideally, intervention would begin in pre-school since the later it occurs, the greater will be the effort needed to affect change..
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