Differences between peer conflict and bullying
Normal Peer Conflict
- Peers have equal power or are friends with each other.
- Conflict happens occasionally or rarely.
- May be accidental.
- May not be serious; no threat of harm.
- Equal emotional reaction from both peers.
- Not seeking power or attention and not trying to gain something.
- General remorse – will want to take responsibility.
- Effort on both sides to solve the problem.
- Imbalance of power between peers; not friends.
- Repeated negative actions that happens often.
- Purposefully done.
- Serious with threat of physical or emotional harm.
- Strong emotional reaction from victim and little or no emotional reaction from bully.
- Seeking power, control or material things.
- No remorse – bully blames victim; no guilt from bully.
- No effort to solve the problem.
*Adapted from Bully-Proofing Your School, 2004