Dealing With Adult Bullies

3 min read
Dealing With Adult Bullies


If you have ever been bullied then you are sure to understand the effects that it can have on your day-to-day life. When kids are bullied it can cause them struggling emotionally and, consequently, it can affect how they deal with their personal relationships. But, to become a victim of an adult bully can cause devastating consequences to an individual and their family. Many victims fall silent about the issue and fail to seek the help they need because they are embarrassed.

What is bullying?

Bullying is when a person or a group are knowingly cruel to someone with the intention of hurting them emotionally or physically. Adult bullies are normally smart when targeting their victim, by conducting their malicious behaviour away from witnesses. They may begin their bullying campaign by making sly remarks and giving their victims little digs. The bully thrives on the hurt they are causing and they are likely to increase the frequency and severity of their insults as time progresses.

Consequences of adult bullying

Victims of bullying during adulthood can have lasting effects on a person’s life. Many suffer with anxiety and depression, sleep deprivation, loss of self-confidence and self-esteem, they may become fearful and some have financial issues due to time missed from work. A bully victim can also suffer with health problems, such as aches and pains and digestive disturbances. Their behaviour is likely to change dramatically and many, sadly, take their frustrations out on their loved ones.

Don’t be a victim

If you think you are being bullied then act to put a stop to it. Here are some tips on dealing with adult bullies:

  • Try ignoring the bully. Avoid showing them that they make you feel comfortable or upset, but instead appear happy and jovial regardless of their actions.
  • Stand up to them and point out that their nasty behaviour is causing you upset.
  • If they seem unlikely or unwilling to back down then seek advice and help from loved ones in your life. Sharing your pain with others will not only feel like a weight has lifted off your mind, but you are likely to gain much needed support.
  • Catch your bully out by asking a friend or loved one to witness their behaviour. By exposing their behaviour they are likely to stop.
  • If their bullying is having effects on your mental or physical wellbeing then document their behaviour and report it to the police or seek legal action.

Here’s what not to do if you are being bullied

  • Avoid exchanging insults with your bully as it will encourage them to carry on.
  • Never resort to physical violence.
  • Don’t take your frustrations out on others, like your children or partner.
  • Don’t bottle up your emotions and avoid speaking out as you will only cause yourself unnecessary pain.

If you are the victim of an adult bully and need support then seek support.

Beyond Blue –

Sane Australia –

If you are feeling depressed or suffering with anxiety see your doctor or a specialist. Never suffer in silence.

If you become concerned about your or anyone else’s health please seek immediate medical attention or go to our health hotlines and website post for further resources 

SAHM takes no responsibility for any illness, injury or death caused by misuse of this information.  All information provided is correct at time of publication. 




About Author

Louise Mullins

Louise writes which she thinks is a pretty awesome job. She resides in sunny Queensland with her husband and two crazy boys, who love to throw food at...Read More her, pull her hair, and have public meltdowns (just the kids that is - not the husband). She is obsessed with American TV box-sets and is a secret Star Trek fan. Her poor husband and kids have to endure her terrible cooking which is often inedible. Read Less

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