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Updated: Jul 1, 2022

Bullying is aggressive and bullying behavior repeated over time by individuals or groups of people. The acts of bullying, both physical and verbal, which are particularly serious are configured as real crimes.

Using the internet and social networks to bully is referred to as cyberbullying and sexting

Homophobia and transphobia are an attitude of intolerance towards LGBT people - Lesbian Gay Bisexual Transgerder. Consequently, when bullying affects girls and boys who are homosexual or perceived as homosexual, it is referred to as homophobic bullying while when it affects transgender girls and boys it is referred to as transphobic bullying. Bullying is characterized by the repetition of both physical and verbal attacks and by their particular severity. In any case, bullying is a crime.

Whoever is found guilty, even if a minor, risks heavy penalties such as suspension or expulsion from school, rejection, compulsory social work, financial compensation.

Short list of bullying, by way of example:

• insults and teasing

• physical offenses

• exclusion from groups or persistent disregard

• use of vulgar nicknames

• sexual orientation offenses - homophobic and transphobic bullying

• offenses against skin color, origins or religion

• threats or coercion to do something against one's will

• offensive phone calls or emails

• damage or theft of personal items

• physical violence (pushing, kicking, punching).

This type of bullying occurs against those who do not reflect gender stereotypes, such as effeminate or flashy boys, masculine or short-haired girls, girls and boys who love to do activities usually aimed at the opposite sex. However, it can also address those who have homosexual or transsexual relatives or parents and those who have LGBT friends or girlfriends.

Compared to the traditional phenomenon of bullying, which affects the identity of the person, the homophobic one concerns sexual orientation, while the transphobic one concerns gender identity. In the event that bullying occurs to those who do not yet have awareness of their orientation or defined their identity, it is much more difficult to ask for help and report the violence suffered for fear of being embarrassed or for fear of the reaction of others.

Unlike other types of bullying, LGBT youth do not find, in most cases, in the adult group someone who can share their situation, as is the case for example for those who have been victims of racism or other forms of discrimination.

As part of society shares stereotypes and prejudices towards LGBT people, sometimes parents and teachers do not understand the effects of this type of bullying and underestimate the situation or even focus on the identity of the bullied girls and boys rather than on the happened.

What to do?

In these situations it is important to find someone to trust and to confide in, not withdraw into oneself but ask for help, without being afraid of being judged for who you are.

The best way to combat bullying is to talk about it with friends, family members, teachers or school psychologists and staff as well as school security officers and share your problem with them.

By Dr. Tomori Mareglen

Criminologist & Crime Analyst

Expert in Forensics Sciences,

Investigative Criminology & Intelligence

Executive President - CEO

International Police Organization IPO

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