Bullying or Constructive Criticism?


Bullying has become a major issue in today’s society. Most of the time when we think of bullying, we think of people getting beat up or shoved in lockers, but not all bullying has to be physical. There are also other types of bullying such as social bullying, cyber bullying, and verbal bullying. While physical bullying is relatively easy to recognize, the other kinds of bullying may be harder to distinguish. Some of these types can cause even more damage than physical bullying. 


Social bullying is trying to hurt someone’s reputation or cause humiliation for them. A few ways that this can be done is by gossiping behind someone’s back or playing a nasty prank with the intention to embarrass someone.  Another way that social bullying occurs is by encouraging others to socially exclude someone from some kind of group or activity. Another form of bullying is cyberbullying. Cyberbullying is pretty self-explanatory; it is the use of technology to bully someone. This has become more and more common as many people spend a lot of time on a screen. The last type of bullying is verbal bullying. Verbal bullying includes insulting, name calling, verbal abuse, etc. Verbal bullying can be very harmful for individuals as it may make them feel belittled. All these forms of bullying can ultimately hurt a person in some way, but I believe that a little bullying can be beneficial to an extent as well.  


Although bullying is bad, I personally believe that a little constructive criticism could be good for people. For example, let’s say that I am a little overweight. If someone makes a comment about my weight, I could take that comment two different ways. I could either stew over what they said, be upset about it, and perhaps call the person fatphobic, or I could do something about it. Maybe that little comment made me realize that maybe I do need to shed a few pounds. Maybe instead of getting all worked up about what that person said, I could make a plan to lose some weight. I could go to the gym more. I could adopt a better diet. I could work on getting more sleep. After a few months, maybe I lost some weight, got into shape and now suddenly you feel really good about yourself. So instead of getting upset about an accurate observation that someone pointed out to me, I could use it as motivation to push myself and make a change in my life. Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not condoning verbal abuse. It can be a very harmful thing to very many people, especially if it is drawn out over a long period of time. I’m just saying that you can’t control what people say to you, but you can choose how you respond to it.


In conclusion, bullying is not something that should be normalized in people’s everyday lives. It can cause extreme damage to people’s mental and physical health. But on the other hand, I believe that a little constructive criticism could be good for someone as long as they receive this information with an open mind.