Types of Beliefs Bullying Instills in Victims

broken

“Nobody will ever love me.”
“Nothing positive can ever happen for me.”
“Human beings, in general are predators and love drama.”

Those were once my beliefs.

When a person is being bullied, they make it a point to play everything safe and settle for far less than what he/she deserves. Why? Because they have been told that they aren’t good enough for so long that they have begun to believe it themselves and do not think that anything positive can ever happen for them. Also, victims lose faith in humanity and come to believe that all people are rotten and take pleasure in harming others. As a result, they lose their trust in humans in general, which only causes them lose out on what could be truly awesome friendships and relationships and re-enforce loneliness and isolation.

This is what bullying does to victims. It smashes their self-esteems to pieces, which can sometimes take years to put back together again, causing them to do things that they normally would never do. I say this because it happened to me.

During the years that I was bullied in school, I did not trust anyone. I selected friends I really didn’t want to be friends with, dated guys whom I wasn’t even remotely attracted to…all because I believed I couldn’t do any better. I did this to avoid being alone. As long as there was a warm body around, it was “good enough”. I didn’t realize that not only was I being unfair to myself, but also the people I selected. I deserved to be with people whom I WANTED TO BE WITH and whom were upstanding and positive, and they deserved to be with people who were with them because they chose to be, not because they were the only option.

Here is another thing victims do as a result of bullying, they never give themselves permission to be selfish, not knowing that sometimes a little bit of selfishness is okay, even imperative at times! This is because victims are often accused of being selfish when they are only caring for themselves and shamed into believing that anything they do for themselves is bad. Therefore, they put themselves on the back burner and everyone else comes first, often at the victim’s own expense!

It happened to me. I became shy and shut people out for fear of being harmed. I was afraid to say “no” to people because in the past, I had been retaliated against and hurt for daring to set a boundary. I was simply forbidden to set boundaries and was expected to or forced to “let” others violate me. It was a terrible situation, which caused me not to value myself as a person.

Thankfully, things are much different today! I want you to know that when you are being bullied, placing worth on yourself is the most important thing you can do. Always…ALWAYS value yourself, even when it seems that others don’t because it will save your self esteem. Keep fighting even when it seems that you’re losing the battle because oftentimes, when things look the bleakest, your breakthrough or relief is just around the corner.

Always love yourself and put yourself first, then reach out to only those who reciprocate love and positive feelings to you. Turn a deaf ear to the negative talk bullies may attempt to fill your head with. Better yet, send those toxic parasites packing! Because you’re worth it! I promise you!

Advertisements

Better Safe Than Sorry: Why You Shouldn’t Apologize in the Presence of Bullies

dreamstime_s_6037465

A sincere apology and owning up to any error often shows great strength and bravery. It takes a person with integrity to apologize for any wrong doing because few people will admit they are “wrong”.

However, an apology or admission, no matter how sincere or genuine, can also be taken as a sign of weakness in the presence of bullies or anyone who lacks integrity. We all live life on a basis of trial and error. In fact, put another way, life is trial and error and to grow and mature as a person, one must own his/her mistakes and wrong doings. Admitting mistakes and giving a well-deserved apology to someone we have transgressed against is a sign of honor and integrity. Only not to those who lack those qualities!

Yes, you should have an open mind, you should be empathetic, generous and kind but only in the presence of and to the people who reciprocate the same toward you. In the presence of bullies, on the other hand, extending those virtues is next to impossible and can be downright dangerous! Here’s why:

A bully will take your heartfelt apology, turn it against you and steamroll you with it! Because he will only take it as further evidence that he’s right, or worse…that you are a terrible person, clumsy, stupid…take your pick. Your apology or admission will only serve bullies’ plans to assert control over you and keep it. To a bully without a conscience, any apology made by his/her victim only looks like a waving white flag of surrender. Therefore, you must make sure that you’re in a safe environment before extending one. Here are a few examples:

Victim: “I was wrong and I’m sorry.”
Bully: “Damn right you were wrong! Oh, you’re sorry alright…a sorry sack of crap!
Victim: “Hey! What’s your problem? I just apologized!”
Bully: “Screw your apology! Your apology means nothing! You only apologize to cover your own butt!”

dreamstime_s_69678644

When I was a victim of bullying during school, I had a bad habit of over-apologizing, which is all too easy to get into anytime you are a victim of any form of abuse. So, you apologize emphatically, even when an apology isn’t necessary and you do this in order to appease the abuser and avoid being harmed.

I have since learned that with bullies, your apology should be more indirect. I’ll say it again. A direct apology will only make you seem weak to a bully and provide assurance to her that she has power over you! Here are a few examples of indirect apologies and they’re what has worked for me:

“Oh, relax! You’ll be alright.”
“You’ll forget all about this by the end of the day.”
“You’ll get over it.”

The above examples may seem callous, unfeeling and cold. However, it allows you to express empathy without accepting blame. Always remember that bullies lack integrity and a conscience and any of the two shown in the presence of those who don’t have it will be shot down. Apologize, yes! But do it without taking any blame. Do it with POWER!