When you are or were bullied, did your bully ever justify their horrific treatment by making statements such as, “You ‘made me’ do it!”? I’ll bet that you have. Bullies often make the following statements to their targets to justify their behavior and intimidate the poor targets into keeping silent.
“You ‘made me‘ or ‘make me’ hit you!”
“You ‘make‘ people want to hurt you!”
“Don’t ‘make me‘ hurt you!”
“Don’t ‘make me‘ mad!”
These are all statements bullies use to gaslight targets and to brainwash them into believing that they did cause them (the bullies) to lash out.
I can’t count the times I heard these from my classmates and I must admit, it was very hurtful and intimidating. However, I look back now and realize that this was only my bullies’ ways of shifting the blame my way because they were so afraid that I would call them out on their terrible behavior and expose them for the trash they truly were. They also wanted to maintain the upper hand.
The key words in these sentences are either “made” or “make” and they are very telling if you really stop and think about it.
If you are a victim of bullying, expect those kinds of remarks. But understand that these are classic statements bullies make to shift the blame your way and to avoid losing their power over you, being caught and the possibility of facing consequences. Please keep this in mind the next time this happens.
Peeling the mask off the bully one layer at a time.