Any time a target gets tired of the abuse and calls a bully’s bluff. The bully will more than likely justify their behavior to others. Here is a list of the most famous statements you’re likely to hear, from most popular to least.
Toxic people! They’re the people who are ungrateful, who are notorious gossips, complainers and whiners- the Negative Nancies and Debbie Downers of the world. People who are toxic undermine your accomplishments and successes and stun you with backhanded compliments. In a nutshell, they suck the oxygen out of the room with their negativity and make you want to run for the nearest exit when you see them coming.
I can’t stress enough the importance of giving these happiness thieves the old heave ho and the things it can do for your self-esteem.
As tweens, teens, even in our twenties, it is only natural that we all want to be liked, be cool, and be accepted by our peers. However, when you are a target of bullying, those wants can be hard to attain due to lies and rumors that bullies may spread, all for the purpose of keeping their victims isolated and alone.
You see? The last thing a bully wants is for anyone, and I mean ANYONE to like you or want to be friends with you.
Often, bully targets will become desperate for friends- for ANY human connection with ANYONE their age. As a result, they may get involved with the wrong people-people who only tolerate them. But because these new people in the target’s life are not directly abusing them (hitting, shouting, name-calling), the victim may mistake this as a friendship and latch on. Or they may feel that it’s the best they can do and there’s nothing out there for them. But targets can do better. They just don’t know it.
And while the targets’ back is turned, his “new buddies” at school or at work are rolling their eyes and talking through their teeth. These people are no better than the bullies. They only feel sorry for the target.
These people are toxic. I understand that being alone is tough. I have been there. But wouldn’t you rather be alone than to crawl up behind people who only tolerate you? I know I would.
Be selective of who you call “friend” because a smiling face does not a friend make. And anyone who makes you feel bad does not deserve the privilege of knowing you. So, get rid of them and fast!
You may be friendless for a time but I promise that you will meet new people and make friends. You are worth it! For now, just spend time with family and do the things you enjoy. Better people will be placed in your life when you least expect it.
1. Positive thoughts equal a positive mind, equals positive actions, which bring positive opportunities, which lead to positive results, which bolsters confidence, which gives you a positive and extraordinary life!
2. Tenacity equals positive change and eventual success.
3. Negative people will never see success, only hollow victories from time to time.
4. The reason most people find ways to discourage you and tell you that you CAN’T is because they’re very much afraid that you WILL.
5. Resting on your laurels equals stagnation and repels growth.
Therefore, with each major goal accomplished, I’ll raise the bar, continue to challenge myself and flex those mind-muscles even more.
On Sunday I had a pretty tough day. Fathers Day hit me with a force I was not expecting. It was so powerful, it brought me to my knees. The only other time as an adult I had been hit with such force is when my mom unexpectedly passed. Yesterday, I could not stop […]
Most people who become targets of bullying are genuinely good-hearted, pure, and sweet-natured and would never dream of hurting another human being in any way.
Bullies, on the other hand, are consistently thinking up newer and more sophisticated ways to inflict harm on others. Their hunger for power is so that they have left a long line of victims in their wake and are always on the lookout for new targets.
The reason most good-natured people become targets of bullying is that bullies are notorious for taking kindness for weakness. Sadly, to protect yourself from becoming the next target requires that you adapt the bully mindset. You must think as they do but not act as they do.
I realize this can be difficult because the mind of a bully isn’t a pleasant place to be. It’s downright ugly!
Another sad truth is that to think as a bully takes a certain degree of identifying with the person to be able to predict what they will most likely do next. And if you can figure out what their next move will be, you can stay a few steps ahead of the bully and protect yourself.
Though it won’t be easy, as the mind of a bully can be a real cesspool, sometimes you must wade through a ton of crap to keep yourself safe and your name and reputation clean.
Shelly (not her real name) had been one of my most vicious of bullies during school. Every time we passed one another in the halls, at a ballgame, anywhere and we would not hesitate to exchange nasty sentiments as we passed, “Bitch!”, “Whore!”, “Skank!”. Thinking up ways to degrade and slut-shame each other was always top priority during these little meetings.
Fast-forward twenty years, in late 2007, I went to a karaoke show, which was held in the Moose Lodge club on the outskirts of town to celebrate my recently having the courage to break off what had been a 2 1/2 year long abusive relationship. I truly had not known my own strength until this point and I was ready for a fun girl’s night out.
When I arrived at the Moose Lodge with a few friends in tow, the first word I heard was, “Oh my God! Not that bitch!” Honestly, I thought the verbal assault was directed at someone else until I looked up and saw her. There Shelly stood, pool cue in one hand, the other hand resting on her boyfriend’s back as her eyes and brows narrowed into little slits in her face and bore into me like a sharp object.
I had not seen her in so many years and wondered how it was that she’d managed to drag around so much hate for so many years when I had completely forgotten about her amid juggling bills, a job and family and other adult priorities. I’d soon learn that that night, Shelly was going through the lowest point in her life. Life hadn’t been kind to her.
It seemed that on her part, even twenty years, marriages and children hadn’t been enough to erase the teenage animosity she still held. We lived in a small Southern town and in small Southern towns, very few people ever forget the past and it’s very easy for the reputation you once had in your teens to follow you for the rest of your life. Sadly, this is how it is in a small town.
Having always loved music and had vocal talent, I got up and sang one of my favorite songs and everyone cheered once I was finished. After I sat down, Shelly sat down beside me and was very impressed with my performance. She told me that she admired my voice and that she’d always known I could sing but didn’t know I was that good. At first, I was flabbergasted. This was the first positive remark I’d heard from her but nevertheless, I was grateful.
I smiled and gave her a gracious “Thank you. It’s good to see you again after all these years.”
We continued to talk and she took some pictures out of her purse to show me. Pictures of what was her talent- woodwork and paintings, the most beautiful work I’d ever seen. This lady was very talented and I couldn’t or wouldn’t deny it. I truly loved her work and could not stop looking at those pictures and complimenting her. She truly was an expert at woodworking and oil painting.
It was at that point that the dynamics of our relationship changed for the better. We exchanged phone numbers and soon began calling each other and texting cute little funnies back and forth. Then we began to invite each other to family outings, cookouts and meetings in town for lunch.
We soon became the greatest of friends and I grew to truly love this lady. We would often talk about how we missed out on what could have been a wonderful friendship years ago. But since the past cannot be changed, we are content to go from the present and make our friendship as fun and drama-free as possible.
The moral of this story is this: It is always possible to turn a bully or enemy into a friend. Nothing is impossible. All it takes is to break down that wall and show the other person genuine interest. Everybody loves it when you are interested in them, their likes, and how things are going in their lives. Even the coldest and meanest of people.
As humans, we all have a certain degree of selfishness. We all want the same things- to be loved, appreciated and respected. Everybody also has a void, waiting to be filled and if we can fill the void- whether it’s by making the person feel loved and respected or giving the person some sense of who they are and where they belong, it can be the difference between gaining a friend or keeping an enemy.
Through our many talks, I found out that this poor lady, whom I thought was so cruel, yet totally in control and didn’t need anyone was really a girl who didn’t feel loved by anyone. She was just as sad as I was but had put on a tough exterior. Also, she had suffered incidences of bullying herself, though not as severe as I did, it still hurt her immensely.
Sadly, my beautiful friend Shelly passed away two years ago from Cancer. There’s not a day that goes by that I don’t miss her and think of her.
I’ll never forget that night at the karaoke club, the night Shelly and I became close friends. And we remained like sisters until the day she died.
By showing her genuine interest, without fakery, I was able to turn one of my most resistant bullies into one of my best friends.
Fly high, Shelly! Until we meet again on those golden streets!
Bullies never select targets at random. They always pick a possible target and size them up before they choose them.
Just as bank robbers will case a potential bank before they rob the place, bullies case (size up) any potential targets.
During the sizing up phase, bullies study their objects carefully to ferret out any weaknesses and imperfections, look for incongruencies between verbal and nonverbal communication (mismatches in words and gestures) and scan for any traces of fear.
You’ll know you’re being sized up for bullying when the person watches you closely while looking you up and down. Their eyes will go from your head to your feet, then back up to your head, and you’ll get an uncomfortable feeling in the pit of your stomach. You’ll feel that something ‘just isn’t right’ about this person. Trust those feelings and get rid of them! Fast!
Another sure-fire sign is that the bully will test you by throwing out a subtle insult or use sarcasm to see whether you catch it and what your reaction will be. If you quickly pick up on it and take control of the situation by calling the bully out or countering him/her by coming back with a cute, but scathing zinger of your own, you’ll stop the bully in their tracks, and they’ll likely decide you are worth the trouble, then move on to an easier target.
On the other hand, if their test remark goes over your head, you ignore the comment or react out of fear, you’ll likely become the bully’s new victim.
Always put a stop to it the first time it happens.
This can be as easy as saying, “I know what you’re doing and I don’t like it! Now get lost!”
Never let the mistreatment become a habit or pattern! Because once a pattern is set, it’ll be too late and any comebacks or means of defense will only bring retaliation and escalation of the bullying.
If you are being sized up by a bully, shut it down! Do or say something that will discourage the bully, then have no more to do with the creep.
The more you know, the better you protect yourself!