Making Excuses for Bullies- 10 Reasons Why People Do It

Down through the ages, either at school, the workplace, or the community, people have made excuses for bullies’ behavior, and it can be downright sickening to targets of such evil acts. Often, the bully has gotten away with it for so long that they get too comfortable and no longer try to hide it. It leaves targets feeling not only a sense of injustice and resentment but endangerment! Unfortunately, this happens all the time, and it’s nothing new.

If you’re a target of such brutality and find yourself wondering why people make excuses for bullies, here are your answers below:

1. They’re afraid of becoming the next target. Nobody wants a bully on their back, so they make excuses for the bullies to protect themselves from being ostracized and to keep from arousing the bullies’ anger. These people often “don’t want to make waves” or “rock the boat.”

2. They’re loyal followers of the bullies. Many people are under the impression that being friends or followers of the bullies will give them status, popularity, favors, and, most of all, protection. And in many cases, it does. But in others, the followers are only being used and will be quickly dismissed as soon as they’ve “served their purpose.”

bystander effect

3. They hate the target worse than they hate the bullies. They take the lesser of two evils route. If people hate the target worse than they do the bullies, they’re naturally going to side with the bullies and help demonize the target, all for the satisfaction of seeing the victim suffer.

4. It’s expected of them. And people will often do what’s expected of them to do in an environment. Often, the bullying of a particular individual has become the status quo in that specific environment, whether it be a school, workplace, or community. And no one wants to challenge that for fear of being marginalized and forced to join the target at the bottom of the heap.

Silhouette of two hands with smartphones, shoot a video on a sinking person’s hand, asking for help. The concept of a selfish society, a social problem

5. They prefer to “cheer for the winning team.” Many people will side with the person who wields the most power. When people are on the side of the winners or ones with the most power, they get a share in being one of the big dogs. Many times, there’s a certain amount of social status and prestige that goes with rooting for a particular clique, team, or group who seems to be in charge and run the school, place of employment, or community.

6. They want to be a part of the in-crowd. (See number 5)

7. They think it will keep down the drama and allow some peace in that particular environment. Let’s face it. Bullying is stressful for bystanders and witnesses too. You don’t have to be a target for it to suck the energy out of you. All it takes for bullying to take the oxygen out of the room is for you to see it. So, people make excuses for the bully, often in their presence, to appease them and calm them down.

8. They’re bullies themselves. Birds of a feather flock together. People have a nose for and take care of their own.

9. For purposes of self-interest. The bullies benefit them somehow. If the bullies are stars on the school football team, star performers in a corporation, or successful business people in a community, they boost the image of that school, corporation, or district and often bring or attract money into the coffers of these entities.

The prevailing thought is this, “If someone makes me look good and is bringing in the money, I’d be a fool to do anything to jeopardize it!”

Also, in return for keeping their mouths shut or justifying their wrongdoings, bullies will often reward bystanders and witnesses with social status, perks, favors, and protection. Or the reward may be the feeling of importance in knowing that they’re on the team that holds the most power and prestige.

10. They want to impress the bullies and be admired by them. Many people have a desire to run with the “cool crowd.” Therefore, they make excuses for them to impress them and win favor. They feel that if the bullies, who already have an overinflated sense of their own importance, think well of them too, then they must be hot items themselves. And it’s a huge self-esteem boost.

However, these people are only letting these bullies’ approval define who they are, which is dangerous. Because once the bullies decide they don’t need them anymore, it will be devastating for them.

You must understand that there is a payoff in it somewhere. Human Nature dictates that none of us do anything unless it somehow, someway, appeals to our self-interests, even a little bit. If people make excuses for bullies, you can be sure that those people are somehow benefiting from it, whether it be a psychological, social, or material gain.

Bullies with Guilty Consciences

Have you noticed that anytime you speak out against bullying and abuse, or any wrongdoing for that matter, that the guilty dogs always come for you and bark the loudest? Maybe you tell your story of the bullying and abuse that you, yourself, suffered in the past and how you’ve since overcome it.

And…BOOM! Many haters come out of the woodwork, latch on, and start screaming, cursing, putting you down and accusing you of everything under the sun. Some call you ugly names and threaten – even people you don’t know, who don’t know you, and have nothing to do with what you’re talking about.

Thankfully, this has not happened here on WordPress and I am so grateful for all my WordPress family! You guys are truly the best and I could not ask for better people online.

But, on occasion, it has happened on a few other forums and once in person when I gave information about it to someone who desperately needed it. The person thanked me but the people who overheard our conversation went berserk over it later. So, if this has happened to you too, did you ever wonder why?

Its because the people who are sooo offended and doing the yelling, cursing, and tantrum-throwing have guilty consciences.

Here’s a further explanation:

Naturally, we know that people who’ve bullied and abused you in the past, are going to come out in droves and attack you. That’s a given. And you don’t have to call these people out by their names to trigger them and put them on the defense. Why? Because to hear, read about, or even know that you’re speaking out on the subject itself makes them very afraid- panicky even.

But, more than anything, it eats at their conscience!

Again, realize that you don’t have to necessarily expose them. All you’ve got to do is prick at their sense of guilt and they go nuts.

The latter is why you may also trigger people who may not know you nor have anything to do with what was done to you- you delivered a huge blow to their conscience! Even worse, you made them feel dirty! And that alone drives people utterly insane!

Though they may not necessarily have bullied and abused you, they did someone else. And hearing you talk about your experiences, or talk about bullying and abuse in general, made you a huge reminder to those people. You caused them to either think of the abuse they’re dishing out to someone else or have inflicted in the past. Ouch!

It’s subconscious. They don’t know it, and probably couldn’t explain it. All those people know is that your story, or the subject you speak of is rubbing them the wrong way and causing them a lot of anxiety.

This is the reason they freak out and flip their wigs.

It’s happened to me. I’ve seen it up close. And believe you me, these folks become downright scary! Because when they lose it, their eyes seem to jump out at you and they snarl when they yell at you. I mean, they really come unglued!

But understand that they are only revealing themselves. They’re ripping their own masks off and don’t realize they’re doing it. Why would someone get so defensive, so irate and have a complete meltdown if you weren’t stepping on a few toes- if the people around you didn’t feel that somehow, some way, you weren’t talking directly to them, or about them?

Really think about it. Pastors of churches have this happen all the time. During Sunday service, they’ll preach on a certain subject, then a few church members get angry over it and give him the what-for after the service is over.

My point is that if they knew they weren’t guilty of anything, they’d automatically know that the conversation had nothing to do with them. So, why would they care?

Remember that the people who are most offended by this and react irately are the guilty ones and you can bet that they have, at some time, bullied you or another innocent person. Anger can be revealing.

With knowledge comes empowerment!