Setting boundaries is telling others what you will and will not tolerate and what they can expect from you if they violate one of your boundaries. Enforcing boundaries, on the other hand, is doing what you said you’d do if someone violates one of them.
In other words, you can set boundaries all day long but if you don’t enforce them, people will pick up on it very quickly. And soon, they’ll no longer take you seriously. They’ll only see you as making empty threats. People will then step over your boundaries deliberately, just because they can!
Setting and enforcing boundaries is never easy, especially if you’re dealing with bullies. Bullies, especially narcissistic bullies, despise boundaries and will retaliate and lash out at you for daring to have them. Therefore, when you decide you will no longer be controlled by your bullies, the power dynamic automatically changes.
Don’t Just Mouth It. Mean it!
They hate anyone who is their own person and not the person they want them to be. Bullies want conformers and followers, not original individuals. Again, bullies abhor boundaries because it shows that they can’t control you. Moreover, when a bully cannot control you, that bully goes into panic mode and will do very desperate things.
Why? Because they want things back to the way they used to be. In other words, they attempt to roll back that power dynamic by doing either one or all of the following.
1. They will be super sweet to you.
2. They’ll threaten you.
3. They may verbally or physically attack you.
4. Or they’ll resort to smearing you to others.
Bullies Hate Boundaries.
It’s been said that if bullies can no longer control you, they will control how others view you. Therefore, again, enforcing your boundaries will not be easy, especially once bullies have grown comfortable with controlling you.
And if they’ve grown comfortable with wresting control over you, you will automatically take them out of their comfort zones once you take your power back. Then you will have hell to pay.
Nevertheless, you must, for your own sake and the sake of your mental health, hold firm and stick to your guns. If you refuse to give in to your bullies, there’s always a chance they just might leave you alone. But be prepared just in case they don’t. You might need to remove yourself from the bullying environment and go to a place where you can make a fresh start.
When people talk of tolerance, I immediately cringe. I don’t find the word very attractive because let’s be real here. The word itself has a bad smell. To put it bluntly, it sounds downright gross!
Sadly, many targets of bullying are so afraid of being alone that they settle for friends who aren’t friends at all. The people the target associates with may keep the target under the impression that he’s being accepted when, in fact, they may only be tolerating him. And you can tolerate someone without accepting them.
I know a few who assume that acceptance and tolerance mean the same but they don’t.
For example, you’re in polite company and the guy sitting next to you, (who happened to scarf three huge bean burritos for supper last night, then put away three eggs for breakfast this morning) covertly eases forth a silent but deadly fart. You catch the first nauseating whiff but can’t hold your nose nor leave the room without seeming rude to everyone else in the room.
Instead, you only sit there, trying to keep a poker face, and nonchalantly hold your breath until you’re sure the smell has dissipated. That’s what tolerance is.
Tolerance means that people allow the target to be around but secretly wish he’d go the hell away. And it has a way of seeping through in how they think of the person, how they act around him, and how they behave toward him.
So, how is the target to know if he’s being tolerated?
Here are the signs:
1. The target will be excluded from any events or social gatherings.
If you’re the target, you’ll often hear the rest of the group talking about the barbeque or sleepover they had over the weekend. You know, the one that none of them thought to invite you to? Show these morons you have a modicum of self-respect and walk away. You don’t need them.
2. The target will feel left out because the other members of the group will be communicating with all other members except her. You’d much rather be alone than to be lonely. Alone is when you’re physically by yourself. Lonely is when you’re among people, yet you’re still alone because to them, you don’t exist. You can be alone but not be lonely. Realize that if you ever feel lonely and you’re in a group, that’s the time to tell them to go kick rocks and be on your way.
3. The target will feel as if he’s tagging behind the group.
Again, if they seem to always leave you behind, eighty-six them and bid them goodbye.
The Difference between Acceptance and Tolerance is huge!
4. Other members of the group will voice their hatred of the target anytime he isn’t around to hear it. The target will then hear about it later. If they stab you in the back, it’s time to ditch them. You’d much rather be by yourself and keep your dignity rather than stay among those toxic people and lose it.
5. There’s always that sickening “elephant in the room” feeling.
Feeling awkward around these people is a sure sign that they don’t deserve your friendship. Understand that this is only your gut trying to warn you about these people. Listen to it!
If people tolerate a person, they only permit having them around when there’s no other choice. And they’ll take every chance of voicing their seething hatred of the person when he/she isn’t around to defend themselves. They allow the person to be around because there’s no way they can make them go away or say anything without looking like a heel. When the tolerated person is present, the rest just grin and bear it.
Here’s why the target should drop these people:
1. By continuing to be around people who tolerate him/her, the target decreases his value as a person. That’s right. Anytime you must crawl behind people who don’t give a crap about you, you make yourself look like you have no other options. People who see this lose all respect for you and think you’re weak and worse, desperate. Therefore, your value will drop like a meteor!
2. You’ll risk being used and abused. Any time you’re desperate to have friends, you’ll settle for any crumb of human connection. You’ll be willing to put up with shabby treatment just to keep from being alone.
Users and abusers will take notice of this and hang around only to get something from you. And those who are decent people and would otherwise be good friends will want nothing to do with you because desperation is so off-putting and only repels them.
3. You’ll only embarrass yourself and further erode your self-esteem. If you don’t have respect for yourself, no one else will either. No one respects anyone they deem pathetic.
You need to muster up some pride and stay away from people who make you feel bad about yourself! Begin rejecting them and have nothing more to do with them. Then watch your value rise again and see how much better you feel about yourself afterward.
Tolerance just plain sucks! For both parties!
It sucks for the others because they don’t want to be around the target but don’t know how to get rid of them without looking like a bunch of jerks. Also, it sucks for the tolerated person because he/she in a place they’re not welcome and in a situation in which they’re mistreated and even abused. It sucks for everyone involved because the energy in the room is bad.
Anytime a Person in a Group of People is only Tolerated, Everyone Feels it. Tolerance includes resentment. It’s gritting your teeth, sitting there with contempt on your face, and drumming your fingers until the person finally leaves. Tolerance makes the tolerated person feel crappy because it’s begrudging and there’s suffering on the part of the tolerating people.
We only Tolerate People We Find Disgusting and Abhorrent.
Acceptance is a much better term. With acceptance, people are at least willing to see the value the disliked person brings to the table although he’s a person they wouldn’t have chosen. It’s receiving the person and allowing them a degree of freedom and respect despite differences.
Acceptance is sitting quietly and letting the person just be. It’s embracing her good qualities regardless of your dislike of him.
With that said, understand that you don’t deserve to be around the people who only tolerate you. Better yet, they don’t deserve the privilege of even being in your presence. It’s much better, not to mention healthier, to be by yourself until you meet people who will not only accept you but celebrate you.
I can’t stress this enough! You deserve to be among those who love you and who care deeply about you. Never, ever settle for people who only tolerate you just to keep from being alone.
Sometimes life tests us and we must be alone for a while before it finally rewards us with people who are meant to be in our lives. In the meantime, use this time of solitude for a deep self-evaluation and for getting to know yourself again. You just may discover strengths and qualities you never knew you had!
Rear of man in hat relaxing on beach chair at beach with sea and blue sky background. vacation in summer.
People may bully you now. They may taunt you, call you ugly names, physically beat you, humiliate you, and turn others against you. Those around you may make you feel sad, alone, unattractive, and rejected in the present.
But rest assured, it won’t always be this way.
Take it from someone who has been there. I had no friends in middle school nor high school until I finally transferred to my new high school during my senior year. Once I left *Oakley High School and began attending *Roseburg High School, that’s when life began. And I took back my power and started rebuilding every part of me that my bullies from the old school had torn down. Leaving Oakley was the free feeling you get after walking away from a toxic and abusive boyfriend.
As an adult, my confidence and self-esteem blossomed. Today, I’m a very happy forty-something and have so much to be thankful for. I have a family of my own. I enjoy my job and am comfortable in my own skin. I’ve accomplished more than I thought I ever would.
I also have grown to love myself- imperfections and all. I don’t worry about what others think of me, and I permit myself to be me and to say no when I don’t want to get involved in or do something that doesn’t feel right to me. These are freedoms that I will never again give up. Not without one hell of a fight!
Don’t Give Up! There’s Beauty on the Other Side of Bullying
I want you to know that the bullying you’re subjected to now will not last, and there’s a beautiful life waiting for you once it’s over. So, whatever you do, don’t give up! Stay your course, and keep fighting. Hold on to your faith and your dignity with everything you have. Because it may not seem like it now, but the best is yet to come, and the right people will find you.
Today, I’m surrounded by family and friends who love and accept me for me, not only what I can do for them. I have friends I never have to explain anything to and who love my flaws and quirks along with my good qualities. I’m so secure with being myself that I can make fun of myself and have a good time doing it.
I’m relaxed, worry-free, and best of all, safe! I’ve found my tribe, and you will find yours. And once you find them, they’ll be well worth the wait!
You’re worth fighting and living for. Don’t give up now. Stick around! It gets better! Much better!
After you’ve been a target of bullying for any length of time, the world becomes a terrifying place.
You begin avoiding people and social situations like the plague because you’ve become afraid of people- all people. In short, you’ve lost all faith in humanity. Everything becomes threatening. You’re stuck in defense mode and constantly waiting for the other shoe to drop.
The ability to think becomes blurry. You drown in self-doubt and lose the ability to distinguish fact from opinion and truth from lies. Therefore, you lose the ability to make smart decisions. You’re always on guard and trust no one. Again, everyone becomes a threat. Even total strangers become threatening.
You can’t give anyone a chance because you’ve become so afraid of being hurt again. And why not? Your classmates or coworkers have done extensive and deliberate harm for so many months or even years. So, who’s to say that others won’t do the same.
Knowing that anyone could bully you at any time, you must always watch your back and cover your behind. And you must continually look over your shoulder and observe those around you for signs of hostility.
You come to believe you have a mark on you that everyone but you can see, and it’s why others always seem to come after you. As much as you want to get rid of that mark, you’re not sure how to do it.
You don’t think you’ll ever stop being a target.
There’s the feeling that there’s no possibility of ever overcoming it. Other victims might rise above it, but you never will because you think that love, success, and anything good is for anyone who isn’t you.
You’ll never be the same person you were before bullies began targeting you. When you’ve been a target of bullying and continue to be, jokes stop being funny because you automatically feel they are somehow aimed at you. Bullying makes a person paranoid. And with good reason.
You lose all confidence, and your self-esteem hits rock bottom. Therefore, your mind is poisoned with the belief that you can never do anything right. You see yourself as a failure. You think that anything you touch, you’ll only screw up.
There’s the expectation that you’ll fail in social situations and that everyone will see all your flaws, real or perceived. You start having unexpected and uncontrollable emotional meltdowns and outbursts. Why? Because you’re in constant fight or flight mode. Your mind is in overdrive, and you’re hyper-vigilant. Your physical body suffers splitting headaches and violent bouts of nausea.
You don’t know who you are anymore. You’ve become a stranger to yourself- this person you don’t even recognize.
You’re shaky inside. You feel tired and run down all the time now. Even worse, you pass out from panic attacks, and you can no longer sleep at night. Your weight drops and your hair falls out due to the overwhelming stress. You feel as if people are torturing you.
In essence, you turn against yourself because you feel the entire world has turned against you.
I was there at one point. Then, I got mad! I didn’t only get angry at them for driving me into that dark pit of hopelessness, but I got mad at myself for allowing it! And when I got mad at myself and started working on changing my self-perception, that’s when things began to change!
The good thing is that I wasn’t down for long. Therefore, if you’re a target of bullying, and this describes how you feel now, I want to give you a big hug.
I also want to tell you that regardless of how things are looking now, there’s hope. You will see the sun again.
‘You see? It’s one thing to have people look down on you, but it’s another when you allow them to cause you to look down on yourself. If nothing else, hang on to your self-love and your strong sense of self. Please don’t allow your bullies to force you to see yourself through their eyes. Believe in yourself, even when no one else does. Never ever give up.
Too much sugar is never good because it doesn’t only eat away at your teeth, it eats away at your self-esteem and your life. In a world with so many evil people, it isn’t wise to be a pushover because too nice equals no backbone and no boundaries.
And there will be many people who’ll take your kindness for being a fool. And don’t think they won’t take advantage of you.
You apologize for things that aren’t your fault and that you have nothing to do with. Keep this up and others will find it too easy to lay guilt trips on you whenever it is that you can’t give them what they want. They will blame you for the tiniest of things because they know that you’ll bow down and take the blame. Apologies should only be given when they’re warranted. Here are 8 things you should never apologize for.
3. You end up a slave to the whims of others.
You bend over backward to take care of everyone else and often, they don’t appreciate it. They only demand more of you. You always feel tired and exhausted because you’re so busy pleasing others that you don’t have time to take care of yourself.
4. You say yes when you really want to say no.
You don’t want to hurt anyone’s feelings or piss anyone off, so against your better judgment, you say yes rather than no. Here’s an example: You’re dog tired and want to go to bed, then someone shows up at your door at eleven o’clock at night with a problem!
They need help and you passively agree to help them with or solve their problem. What’s really bad is that this person has done this many times before. What you should do is tell this person to take a walk. These types of people should never darken your door at such a ridiculous hour!
You’ll also rescue people from bad situations that are self-inflicted. You’re an enabler.
5. You take on others’ moods.
Instead of refusing to let some Negative Nancy get you down, you let their funky moods rub off on you. Not good!
Understand that the reason some people are too nice is that they feel they’re not enough. They feel they have no right to say no to anything- that they don’t deserve to take care of themselves. And it’s because they’re terrified of conflict.
They want to be approved of, liked, and loved and feel that the only way to do it is to bust ass for others. Sadly, the opposite usually results because people lose respect for you! No one respects a pushover!
Unfortunately, most don’t realize all of this until they reach your limit and get fed up! But you don’t have to waste years of your life being a doormat if you follow the guidelines below:
Life’s too short for that. You must stand up for yourself when someone violates a boundary, whether it be physical or psychological. Realize you deserve to be treated well and you deserve it just as much as the next person. Always speak up for yourself.
2. Stop apologizing so much.
Realize that some things don’t warrant an apology. And standing up for yourself and saying no are only two of those things.
3. It’s okay to put yourself first.
Take care of yourself first. Only then will you have enough energy to take care of others.
4. Again. Say no if you don’t want to or don’t feel like fulfilling a request.
Don’t be afraid to say no if you don’t want to do something or don’t feel like doing it.
5. As difficult as it might be, don’t let the moods of others around you affect your mood.
If you have a Debbie Downer who is always negative, there’s nothing wrong with calling them out on it or staying away from them. Whatever you do, don’t try to rescue them or argue with them. It won’t work.
Sometimes, taking care of yourself means facing conflict because some people will be selfish and demanding. They won’t be able to see past their own needs and desires.
Never be afraid to stand up for your rights. It’s okay to take care of others. But don’t forget to take a little back for yourself. Only then will people respect you and recognize that you also have feelings and rights.
All too often, targets of bullying have a hard time setting boundaries. Many just keep their mouths shut, grin and bear it while others wipe their feet all over them. They suffer in silence and obscurity, which only further damages their mental health. If being used as a rug hurts so much, why do they allow it to continue?
There are several reasons:
1. They don’t have the confidence.
Many targets of bullying feel helpless and simply think it wouldn’t do them any good. So, they see no point in speaking up because they know that they’ll likely get bullied worse for it. It takes confidence to set boundaries, which, sadly, is something a few bullying targets have.
Also, as we know, bullies don’t respect boundaries because they don’t acknowledge them. In their minds, you’re a target and, to them, a target has no rights and deserves no human dignity. Bullies don’t see targets as human beings deserving of the same human rights as everyone else. That’s a fact.
2. They feel powerless to stop the abuse.
Again, setting boundaries is anything but easy- it’s one of the hardest things to do after people bully you for so long and brainwash you into thinking you’re to blame for their horrid behavior.
Many targets have been abused for so long that they’ve “gotten used to it.” In other words, bullies and their sycophants have conditioned the targets to take the abuse and allow them to ride roughshod over them. Many times, targets have been fooled into believing that setting boundaries is selfish.
This is why many targets cave in to the bullies’ demands. They feel it’s safer just to give them what they want and pacify them.
3. They fear the bullies will retaliate.
If you’re a target of bullying, you may badly want to tell your abusers to knock it off. You may want to tell them to get the hell away from you and stay away. You may even want to fight back, but you don’t know how they may react.
Another thing you don’t know is whether they’ll accept your boundaries, nor if they’ll want to accept them. You know that there’s a chance the bullies may act violently toward you for having the chutzpah to speak against their abuse.
Bullies despise even a hint of opposition because they see it as your challenging their power and perceived authority. And they’ll do whatever they can to tighten their grip if they suspect you’re defying them. And sometimes, things get dangerous, and you must do it scared.
But what they don’t realize is this. When you set boundaries, you enact your autonomy and speak from a place of self-care and self-love. You decide what you will and won’t tolerate. You take your power back.
Before you’re able to do that, you must be clear of what you will not accept.
It takes uber-confidence to stand up to a bully. It would be best if you also gave up your old self-protective behaviors – those you tried in the past that failed, which are ways your bullies and a few other abusers in your life probably conditioned you to respond.
2. You must stop trying to explain yourself to anyone.
3. You must stop trying to figure out what made the bullies so hostile.
4. You must stop wondering what you did wrong.
5. You must stop wondering if something’s wrong with you.
6. You must stop asking, “why me.”
Before you can stand up to abuse, you must squash the mentality that compels you to do any of the above mentioned.
You must understand that all the why me, why this, why that, gets you nowhere. And all the wracking your brains wondering and trying to figure out what’s wrong also serves no purpose. It’s a complete waste of time and only makes you feel worse.
Instead, be real with yourself and conclude that your bullies are just a bunch of ignorant, moronic jackasses who lack character and live fake existences. You must also learn to trust yourself, which includes trusting your body and how it feels. Trust everything you see, hear, feel, sense, and the vibes you pick up from the people around you. And finally, trust your decisions.
It also takes dogged determination:
1. Even if your bullies rationalize and justify their behavior, you won’t take their crap.
2. Even if they blame you for their despicable behavior, you won’t take it.
3. Even if they tell you that you’re crazy or mentally imbalanced, you won’t take it.
4. Even if they call you a bitch, an asshole, or any other degrading name, you won’t take it.
5. Even if you made a mistake and your bullies call it out in an abusive manner, you won’t take it.
6. And, for the love of Pete! If the bullies commit physical violence, you definitely won’t take that! Get the police involved, file charges, and sue for any damages! Or, put up those dukes and throw down if you need to!
And it’ll take calling your bullies out every single time they cross the line.
You can say:
“Cut it out!”
“Knock it off!”
“Get away from me!”
You get power just by loudly giving either one of these commands. And who knows? I’m not making any guarantees here, but you might shock your bullies back to reality and make them leave you alone. There were times when I was pleasantly surprised, and it worked for me.
You do not have to walk on eggshells around anyone! Know that you do have a choice and a voice. You can choose not to accept the bullies’ behavior. You have more power than you know.
As a survivor of bullying, people often ask me, “What’s the worst thing about being bullied?” Here are my answers:
1. It’s the pinned up fear and rage you feel but don’t dare show. It’s the paralyzing social fear that sets in. It shuts you down and leaves you withdrawn from the rest of the world. Once people have bullied you for so long, you become intensely paranoid and suspicious of every person you meet. Any laughter you hear, you automatically think, is directed at you.
2. It’s the confusion. You know that you should take a stand against the bullies. You know that you should speak out about it, only you don’t know how to do it, and you’re terrified that it will only make things worse.
3. It’s the unanswered questions that play in your mind a thousand times a day. “Why me?” “What have I done to these people” “How do I fix this?” are the questions you have in your head every time bullies surround you and harass you. You know what you want to say to the bullies. “Look! Leave me the &%$# alone!” you scream inside your head but don’t’ dare say it because you know what’s likely to come next.
4. It’s the feeling of loneliness and isolation. When we suffer bullying, not only do bullies smear us to keep us isolated and from making any new friends, but we- WE automatically put up walls of protection to keep other people out, which only reinforces the separation from others.
5. It’s the loss of your entire personhood. You forget how to smile, laugh, and have a good time and how to connect with and interact with others. You’re no longer that vibrant, happy, and healthy person you once were. And each insult, each back-biting rumor, each physical attack, each joke, and each prank cuts a little deeper, chips away at your self-esteem, and brings you lower. You feel trapped. You feel as if your bullies are holding you hostage!
Bullies can ruin a target’s life! And they can alter your entire life if you don’t make the changes needed to take your life back.
I won’t kid you. To get out of the hole that your bullies have forced you into, you will have to work hard.
You’ll first need to get out of that environment (if possible), then focus on healing, and lastly, change your entire mindset, which means altering your thought patterns, your attitude, and your whole demeanor. And this change won’t happen overnight but may take years.
However, you must be patient and put in the work and time to take back your confidence and happiness. But I promise you, it will be worth it in the long run, and you’ll be so glad you put in the time and effort!
You regain your power by changing your mindset. Realize that a victim mentality only breeds a funky attitude.
I may have been a target, but I was never a victim. I thought I was during the entire time I was bullied and for a while after it was over. Understand that a victim mentality, when taken to extremes, serves no purpose. It only breeds laziness and entitlement. You feel that the world owes you something. It doesn’t.
I had the same attitude and it got me nowhere!
Also, if you hold on to it and let it define you, you’ll only attract more bullies and abusers in your life. We are what we think, and the universe will provide more of the stuff that matches our thoughts.
That is why it’s so important that you shed this mentality of defeat. Only then will you re-empower yourself and win true peace and happiness!
Most bullying is emotional and psychological torture. Sure, there are many physically violent bullies out there and they are psychologically traumatizing enough using their fists. However, physical bullies are either (a)not very socially intelligent and persuasive, (b) attack in groups wearing masks over their faces to give them anonymity, (c) so well-connected that they’re almost untouchable, or (d) couldn’t care less about the consequences they will face.
The reason most bullies prefer psychological violence is because there are no bruises, cuts, wounds, scars, or any visible marks on the target’s body. And without visible marks, there’s no proof of the abuse. Therefore, when you report the abuse, the perpetrators aren’t likely to get into trouble for it and you stand more of a chance of being accused of being too sensitive, paranoid, or mentally ill.
These are the reasons I recommend being prepared when you know you must walk into a snake pit.
Here are ways to gather evidence:
1. Document the abuse- I’ve said it many times before and I’ll say it many more. It’s crucial to document each bullying incidence and do it in detail. Use the 5W method- (What, who, why, when, where…and sometimes how) write down what happened, who was involved, who were the bystanders and witnesses, why the bullying incident happened (retaliation for reporting a prior bullying incident?) when it happened (date and exact time of incidence) and where it happened (school bathroom, locker room, gym, behind the school, the parking lot, etc.).
2. Wear a body camera- If you live in a one-party consent jurisdiction and the laws permit you to wear one, I recommend you wear a body camera. In fact, I can’t stress it enough! Body cams that record both video and audio are your best bet, but if you can only get a cam that records video, that’s fine too as you can still capture physical attacks and body language. A picture may be worth a thousand words, but a video is worth a thousand pictures because if bullying is caught on video, there’s no question that it’s happening and it’s the best evidence you can get!
3. Keep a digital recorder handy- These are good for recording verbal altercations and many of them today can play recorded sound that is clear and not muffled.
4. Make 3-4 Copies of your evidence- Whether it’s documentation, body cam recordings, or digital audio recordings, it’s always best to make several copies of the evidence because schools, companies, and other entities are notorious for (deliberately) misplacing and losing a target’s evidence of bullying. Yeah, I know. Convenient, isn’t it?
5. Keep each of your copies in different (undisclosed) locations- This is so important! Because, if you think school districts and companies haven’t snooped through a target’s office, or worse, hired people to break into their houses to search for evidence they can dispose of, you’re wrong! When it comes to the threat of being sued, schools and companies will resort to anything, and I mean anything!
6. Screenshot and save any nasty and abusive emails, texts, or private messages- Very important! Any time bullies resort to cyber-bullying you via email, text, or private message, they automatically leave a paper trail! Screenshot it, save it, and, if need be, print them all out. Make copies of them and the files. Store each copy in an entirely different place (your house, your grandma’s house, your lawyer’s office, etc.) Store them in a fireproof safe!
They snoop through your garbage when you put it out on the street for the trash-men to pick up the next morning, break into your vehicle, and other nefarious things to cover their butts. I’ve read many an article about these things happening to targets of bullying, whether in school, the workplace, or community. And in today’s world, bullies are now targeting their victims for surveillance drones and school boards are targeting parents with electronic surveillance as well, then spreading their private information and pictures of children to some evil entities.
It’s a very dangerous world nowadays and you never know what sick people you just might be dealing with.
gavel and soundblock of justice law and lawyer working on wooden desk background
I can’t stress enough how important it is to gather your own evidence. Quietly do your own investigation. It’s pointless to rely on the school or workplace to investigate for you because the results will only be in the bullies’ and the investigating entity’s favor, not yours! Never, ever trust anyone else to gather evidence or investigate for you. When you’re targeted for bullying, you cannot afford to trust anyone but yourself and I’m not joking! When you’re bullied, it’s not the time to be lazy. The only person you can depend on is you. Only you can gather the evidence you need to prove that you’re targeted by bullies, take legal action, and get justice.
crazymaking – a form of psychological attack on someone by offering contradictory alternatives, then criticizing the person for choosing either. (Dictionary.com)
When a bully uses the crazymaking tactic to attack the target, he/she puts the person in a lose-lose situation. It’s a case of damned if you do and damned if you don’t.
For example, a bully may tell a woman she wears too much makeup, looks like a slut, and needs to tone it down a bit. So, the woman goes lighter on the makeup the next day, only to be told by the bully that she’s too barefaced and looks like a nun.
No wonder it’s called “crazymaking” because it can make you crazy if you let it. Understand the bullies do this to jerk you around and maintain their power over you. They have you jumping through hoops to win their approval because they have you feeling that you can’t do anything right.
Depression Concept with Word Cloud and a Humanbeing with broken Brain and Heavy Rain
Understand that crazymaking is covert verbal abuse. To protect yourself from it, you must first learn to recognize it when it happens to you.
A surefire way of identifying crazymaking is by noticing how it makes you feel. Crazymaking can:
Make you feel off-kilter and unsure of how to defend yourself
Make you feel lost and confused
Make you feel blindsided
Make you feel discombobulated or disoriented
Give you mixed signals and messages but make you too afraid to ask for clarification
Make you feel extreme discomfort around the bully
Make you feel jerked around and toyed with
Make you want to walk away from the bully but only leave you frozen
Make you feel bewilderment
Make you feel that something is “off”
Make no mistake. This is how your bullies get their kicks. They enjoy this because, again, it gives them a huge rush of power and makes them feel superior to have some sucker bending over backward to win their approval. Understand that this is a game! And your efforts to conform to a bully’s standards are pointless because bullies will only continue changing the rules and moving the goalposts. After all, bullies are notorious megalomaniacs who quickly get drunk on their power.
So, you must know your worth. That means knowing that you don’t have to live up to anyone’s standards but yours. You are the only person who knows your likes and dislikes. You are the only person who has the authority to choose what you want, how you want it, what you do, how you do it, and so forth.
Who are they to criticize you? Your life is your life, and you have the right to live it on your terms. Do what makes you happy, and to hell with anyone who has a problem with it.
The only way you’ll be able to battle crazymaking successfully is to have confidence and a strong sense of self. You must know yourself and be secure in yourself. Only then will you have no tolerance for this type of behavior, and therefore, crazymaking bullies have no power over you.