When Bullies Bully by Instigation (Part 2)

In the first part, we discussed that bullies soften bully by instigating an argument between the target and someone not normally involved in the bullying.
There are many ways in which bullies instigate and bait others to participate in the bullying unwillingly.

Here are a few examples of baiting strategies:

The Secret Admirer Bait

A bully will use this to bait someone to insult and humiliate the target.
Here’s how it goes:

The bully and a few classmates or coworkers will see the target. The target is nearby and within earshot. If the target is female, the bully will point to a nearby male and say,

“Hey, (target’s name)! John said he was madly in love with you!”
John will then get on the defensive and say,
“Oh, hell, no! I don’t like that ugly thing!” or, “That whore? No freakin’ way!”

Moreover, by doing this, the bully slyly baits John in a knee-jerk reaction that includes insulting and humiliating the unfortunate target and achieves gratification in seeing the target humiliated and hurt.

The secret admirer bait is mostly used in middle and high school.

The Invitation bait

In this situation, the bullies will, all of a sudden and out of nowhere, become chummy with the target and pretend to have a change of heart. They do this to win the target’s trust.

Once trust is won, the bullies will invite the target to a birthday party, cookout, sleepover, or kegger, then humiliate the target somehow.

Furthermore, this may involve getting the target drunk or high, then manipulating them into compromising situations. This is used by both school-aged and adult bullies.

Here’s how to shut these monsters down:

1. Understand that no one ever becomes true friends overnight. Therefore, if someone who has bullied you suddenly starts to buddy up to you, and it seems to have come out of nowhere, it’s a red flag, and you should steer clear! You can be sure that this creep is up to no good.

2. Also, if bullies are trying to bait you into anything, they will lay it on thick! They’ll overdo the pleasantries. It will sound so sickeningly sweet, you’ll want to grab a barf bag. You’ll know it’s fake if you’re paying attention.

However, remember that bullies are very convincing and if you’re young and still in school, you’re likely to overlook the yuck if you aren’t careful. So don’t fall for it! Don’t go anywhere with those people. Because once you’re alone with them, you’re at their mercy!

3. If you’re a kid in school and a bully uses the secret admirer bait and tricks someone into humiliating you, deal out a good burn for the person baited into insulting you.

For example, you can say:

“No chance. I could never be that desperate, and you could never be that lucky.”

Then keep walking.

Your witty comeback will sting the poor sucker who took the bully’s bait and tried to insult you. But hey! Better them than you. Right?

With knowledge comes empowerment!

When Bullies Bully by Instigation

This type of bullying is indirect and extremely cowardly. These types of bullies don’t have the guts to be direct or the stomach to get their hands dirty. Therefore, they do their bullying by instigating a conflict between the target and another individual. They then stand back, at a safe distance, and watch from afar, enjoying seeing the target humiliated and in distress.

In most cases, the individual these bullies pit against the target is not a bully and has had no history of conflicts with the target. The person pitted against the target can be a stranger, an acquaintance, friend, teacher, or supervisor.

Divide and Conquer

There are several reasons people bully by instigation:

• To create a situation where they can gleefully watch as the target gets humiliated and stressed out.
• For the purpose of turning others against the target.
• To create drama and entertainment
• So that they can parade the target in front of an audience
• To distract from their own evil deeds. If two or more people are too busy fighting and others are too busy watching and getting their kicks, they’re too occupied to pay attention to what the bully is doing.
• To isolate the target by making him look like the bad guy. The more people the bullies can turn against the target, the worse the target looks, and the less power he has.

bullied victim tortured

Often, when you’re a target of bullying by instigation, the person or people your bully has pitted against you will start their sentences off as:

“Hey! I heard you’re trying to get with my boyfriend!”
“Somebody told me that you did…”
“I heard you told so-and-so such and such!”
“Somebody told me you’re talking smack about me behind me back! How about having the guts to say it to my face!”

You’re First Clues

If you’re a target of bullying and someone has instigated a conflict between you and someone you don’t usually have trouble with, the first words out of your accuser’s mouth will be,

“I heard…”,
“Somebody told me…”
“It’s going around that…”
or
“It was brought to my attention…”

Those first few little words are your first clue of bullying by instigation, and that one or more of your bullies is trying to pit others against you.

Bullying, friendship, and people concept. Girl patronizing screaming pointing the finger at the shy timid nerdy woman who is looking down

The Correct Way to Respond

Therefore, if you’re a target of bullying and you’re ever in a situation like this, here are a few comebacks you can’t make to the accuser:

Laugh at the accuser and say one of these,

“Really? You ‘heard,’? You’re so gullible you’ll believe anything, won’t you?”
“Wow! And you believed that? Boy, are you stupid!”
“Gee, you’ll fall for anything, won’t you!”

Challenge the accuser’s intelligence, then walk away laughing. Your accuser will be stunned, and your bullies, who are surely watching from afar, will be sorely disappointed.

How I wish I were this quick in school. But, as an adult, I was better able to defuse it by the above counter statements.

Always imply that your accuser is dumb for believing the lies, and I guarantee that the person will back down. It’s what worked for me.

(Continued in Part 2…)

Knowing Who the Real Target of Bullying Is

When you witness bullying, it can be difficult to know which person is the bully and which is the target. Why? Because most bullies are cunning, clever, and covert. Therefore, not all bullies resort in physical violence, where they leave bruises, cuts, and broken bones that are easy to see. Many bullies use psychological tactics and emotional manipulation to bully and abuse their targets.

Also, they many use psycho/emotional methods to set the target up for physical violence or to get into trouble with authority. Remember that bullies have ways of slyly provoking the target and setting them up to look like the aggressor.

Additionally, bullies have ways of gaslighting you and making you doubt your own sanity. They have a knack for manipulating your emotions and making you feel guilty for things you aren’t guilty of. These people also have ways of brainwashing you over time and turning you against yourself. They know how to make you feel as if you did something to justify their mistreatment and abuse.

And sadly, once they do, you won’t know how to save yourself from those who accuse you of perpetuating the bullying, label you, and penalize you unjustly. You’ll have difficulty identifying and naming the tactics bullies are using against you. Therefore, you won’t know how to explain what is happening to you or report the bullying without sounding like you’re rambling.

And worst, your bullies and the circumstances they force on you will convince you and those in power that you are the culprit. If you happen to be the person who witnesses someone else being bullied, you’re likely to point a finger at the wrong person.

Therefore, if you want to know who the real target of bullying is,

ask yourself who has the least power.

Ask yourself who has the least social capital.

Other questions you should ask are as follows:

Who has the least influence?

Who has the least friends?

Which of these individuals is liked or loved the least.

Which of these people is most hated.

Ask yourself which person people can openly abuse and get away with it.

Once you know the answers to these questions, the answer will be crystal clear.

 

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Let Them Talk All They Want

Gossips are everywhere! Too many people worry needlessly about what people are saying about them. But here’s the thing, people talk. They’re going to have something to say about you until the day you die. Get used to it. Better, yet embrace it! Love it!

Here’s Why:

1. Although hurtful, when people talk about you, they make you relevant! Good or bad, it means you’re an exciting topic- you’re not dull. Remember that it’s much better to be good or bad than to be boring.

Businessman not listening to nonsense.

2. When people engage in petty gossip about you, it means that they can’t get you off their minds. Somehow, someway, positive or negative, you’ve made an impact on them. You’ve stirred emotions up in them.

3. When people talk about you, it means they don’t have lives of their own and are obsessed with yours, which means your life must be more exciting than theirs.

4. When people talk behind your back, they reveal much more about themselves than they do you. Remember the old proverb, “Great minds discuss ideas, Average minds discuss events, and Small minds discuss people.”

Remember, Haters Make You Famous

5. When people can’t shut up about you, you’re the one who’s in control of them. Because you occupy a large amount of space in their minds, you’ve affected them profoundly and with little or no effort.

6. The people who blab about you expend a lot of their energy on you while you get to save yours. They’re thinking of you without getting so much as a thought from you.

7. When you’re the topic of others’ discussions, it means that they’re your fans, only they don’t know it.

8. In a nutshell, when people can’t stop running their mouths about you, it only means that you have a tremendous amount of power over them, and you didn’t have to make an effort to get that power! Yay, you!

So don’t give their talk any validation by reacting. Just sit back and be amused by the talkers. Petty gossip is just that- petty!

Give ’em something to talk about

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Bullying for Increased Social Status

Bullying is not only used to maintain power and control over the target. It is also used as a vehicle to achieve higher social status. And sadly, it works like a charm. The reason it works so well is that the social status of the bully is increased, while that of the target is reduced.

For many people, having the respect and admiration of their peers is of more value to their sense of self-worth than money and material wealth. Although one can achieve elevated social status through wealth and material things, it can also be attainable though bullying if the bully doesn’t have the former. On the other hand, if the bully does have money and material wealth, the social status he gets from bullying is just icing on the cake.

In other words, it’s not something he feels he must do. It’s something he wants to do because he thinks it’s fun.

A Zero Sum Game

A selfish man walks the heads of people as on the steps to the highest post behind the crown. Conceptual scene is a narcissistic and selfish person

But most bullies don’t have a lot of money. And these are the types who achieve social status through exploitation of other mistakes, flaws, and shortcomings.

Bullying is not a healthy way to achieve social status. A healthy way of increasing one’s social ranking requires some type of achievement, such as joining a positive movement or donating to a charity. However, one tiny mistake can instantly tarnish one’s reputation and all the good they’ve done.

The world is, sadly, quick to blame a person for any negative qualities or actions while slow to forgive or to give credit for good deeds. And bullies instinctively know this and take full advantage of it.

The only way they can excel up the social hierarchy is by demeaning others. And they do it by taking the tiniest mistake you make, adding to it, and blowing it up to decrease your social ranking.

The Only Way for Most Bullies to Have Power

Bullying, friendship and people concept. Girl patronizing screaming pointing finger at shy timid nerdy woman who is looking down

In doing this, bullies garner support from others who are just like them and who share the same values. After all, bullying is most effective in group situations, where people unite to serve a certain objective. Bullies never work alone. They always have people backing them.

Group bullying not only gives talentless bullies a sense of belonging, but it also tightens the bonds among members of the group. Furthermore, this collective bullying gives them not only anonymity, but also makes them more successful in bringing the target down than if the bullies worked alone.

Another advantage to group bullying is the mob mentality it produces. It’s a dark part of human nature that people conform and imitate the behaviors of other members of the group. Therefore, in groups, bullies have much more impact and can make a much bigger impact.

Bullies Never Work Alone, They’re Too Cowardly

However, understand that people who rely on their ability to bully others out of existence to achieve social gain can never achieve it any other way.

These types of people are the talentless, the lazy, and the incompetent. They have no redeemable qualities, no personalities, and no real intelligence. You must see these bullies exactly as they are- empty suits with zero substance. And, once you see them clearly, your confidence won’t take such a big hit when they come for you.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Step-by-Step Description of Mobbing in Progress

Mobbing is THE severest form of bullying. Once the bullying reaches the stage of mobbing, this is when the bullying becomes life-threatening! And if you’ve ever been a target of it, you know firsthand how destructive it is.

The reason that mobbing is so hard to remedy is that not only has it already rendered us so distraught that we’re unable to think clearly, but we aren’t able to name, describe, nor communicate the steps bullies take to destroy us.

A successful smear campaign is started by a bully or bullies who are well-practiced in the arts of persuasion and influence and can last for years.

Here’s something I want you to realize. A smear campaign is nowhere near as tricky as it looks. You’d be amazed at just how simple it is to smear someone. It’s so easy that it shouldn’t be so effective, but it is!

To quote the old Geico commercial, it’s “so easy; a caveman can do it.”

Here’s a chronological, step-by-step recap of how bullies do it and succeed at it:

1. The bullies have a dislike for a specific individual who refuses to conform to their standard of who she should be.

Now all this time, the bullies have been able to influence everyone else and get them to submit to their will and every whim. Then, low and behold, along comes the target (we’ll call her “Cindy”) who’s stubborn and either unable to or won’t submit to the bullies’ control and allow them to change her personality into what they think it should be.

And Cindy may not realize the bullies’ motives and that just by doing her thing, she’s enraging the bullies. So, she goes on about her business, makes plans for her future, makes achievement after achievement, and maybe she gets loads of positive attention and praise from others because she’s so successful and well-liked.

2. Next, the bullies begin to smear Cindy. To implement their smear campaign, they watch Cindy, studying her behavior carefully until they’re able to anticipate her reactions.

3. The bullies then train their audience (i.e., the other classmates or coworkers to expect a specific type of behavior out of Cindy. They point out these behaviors when they occur. The bullies then associate Cindy’s completely innocent behavior with something bad or evil.

For example, let’s say that Cindy is sweet, playful, and likes to engage in a little banter. The bullies watch as Cindy banters with people in the school or workplace. She playfully calls someone a “dummy” or a “goofball,” but others know that it’s all for harmless jokes and think it’s funny because Cindy is a genuinely kind person.

4. So, the bullies begin making offhand comments. They remark that Cindy’s kindness is only an attempt to kiss ass because she wants something from people and that she thinks the people around her really are dummies, but only disguises it under a veil of fun jokes and playfulness.

The bullies also make statements that Cindy thinks she’s cute and that Cindy thinks she’s smarter than everyone else. Then repeat, repeat, repeat!

To quote a propaganda minister to a well-known dictator in history, “Tell a lie once, and it remains a lie. Tell a lie a thousand times, and it becomes the truth.”

5. The next time others see Cindy being kind to and playfully bantering with someone, she doesn’t look so cute, and the banter isn’t so funny anymore. Now people see a side of Cindy they can’t believe they never noticed before.

6. Now feeling smug with gratification, the bullies look at themselves, then at Cindy with smirks on their crooked faces and try the same thing all over again.

7. And before you know it, everyone wonders what they ever saw in Cindy, to begin with. They start having negative feelings toward the poor girl.

8. Cindy begins to pick up on the negative vibes around her and withdraws a little. She doesn’t speak to people as much as she did and doesn’t understand what she did or said to bring it all about. The bullies notice that Cindy is more distant than usual, and they point this out to everyone.

“Hey, look! Do you see that? Now, what did we tell you? Cindy really does think we’re all dummies! She really does think she’s smarter than the rest of us!”

“And her ass-kissing (Cindy’s sweet disposition) didn’t work, so now she’s too good to speak to anyone!”

9. Cindy’s withdrawal only inflames everyone’s feelings of dislike and resentment. Although her becoming distant is only out of self-protection, others mistake it for smugness and arrogance.

10. And it only snowballs from there, getting worse and worse over time. Understand that people are human, and they make mistakes. They misjudge innocent others all the time.

And when bullies condition the whole of a group, school, organization, workplace, or community to see any quality in a particular person as a bad thing, a smear campaign is most effective. So everyone, even those who aren’t bullies and are otherwise kind and compassionate, can become extremely cold and cruel to a target. And everyone repeats the same cruelty, over and over again.

Understand that smear campaigns are just too effective because they can quickly become bullying, then escalate to mobbing, which is the most severe kind of bullying. And once it increases to mobbing, it’s unstoppable, and the only way you can take your life back is to leave that toxic, poisonous environment altogether.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

“The More You Stir Sh**, The More It Stinks”

Bullies are notorious for sowing discord among other people. They just can’t seem to get enough drama. In fact, they thrive on it. Have you ever wondered why?

It’s to keep the spotlight off themselves and their despicable behavior and dirty dealings. Lots of times, they do it as a distraction. If the bullies can stir the pot and keep others at each other’s throats, they get to look like gods and be untouchable.

Also, bullies get cheap thrills from watching others tear each other down. Trust me, bullies love that stuff!

It also makes the bullies look as if they’re above it all. Bullies use appearances to look better than what they were. And the more they can stir it up and make it stink, the better they smell.

Remember this the next time you see bullies trying to instigate hatred between other people. Remember this the next time bullies try to instigate a fight between you and a former friend, or between another classmate or coworker.

Understand that this is done in politics all the time. In fact, it’s what the media is best at. It is called the Divide and Conquer strategy. And it’s used to sow discord among people. And sadly, it works. And in more ways than one.

The next time someone tries to turn you against a friend or tries to turn a friend against you, ask yourself who the division would benefit most. You, your friend or the instigator?

With knowledge comes empowerment!

The Truth is Uncomfortable and Inconvenient to Bullies and Their Followers

They not concerned with facts, only the excitement that the rumors and lies create and the close bonding it brings their group.

Understand that your bullies already know the truth. Oh, yes! They know that you aren’t what they say you are. And they know that they’re lying through their teeth. That’s the sad part.

Bullies know that you’re better than what they try to make you out to be. But, here’s the thing.

The truth doesn’t fit their narratives, nor their agenda. So, they’ll go out of their way to make the falsehoods look true. Realize that the bullies are benefiting from the ruination of your reputation. And they’ll move Heaven and Earth to keep those benefits.

Your bullies are the ones that have to work so doggone hard because it takes a ton of work to cover up lies and half-truths. Lies tend to have a never-ending chain. They tell the first lie and have to put out a second lie to cover up the first. Then they must lie a third time to cover up the first two lies about you. And on and on it goes. It’s a never-ending chain.

Lies have a way of building and they build so much that it soon becomes hard for the bullies to keep their stories straight. I mean, seriously! After so long and so many lies, who can keep up with all that? They eventually lie themselves into a crack they can’t pull themselves out of.

If you stay calm and play your hand correctly, your bullies will eventually spin themselves into their own web and get stuck in it. So, sit back and watch them fall into the trap of their own making. Even better have lots of pun- oops- fun watching the show.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

16 Kinds of Personal Information You Should NEVER Share When You’re a Target of Bullying

bullying gossip rumors

If you are a target of bullying, never share anything with anyone- not even your best friend. Because, in a situation like this, you cannot afford to trust anyone. I don’t care how close you and your friends seem to be. It’s still not a smart move because you never know when your bullies will succeed in turning your friends against you and those friends become willing participants in bullying you. If you share intimate and private details about your life with anyone, it’s not a question of if but when they spread your business far and wide once the bullies win them over.

So, never divulge any info that’s private or personal- anything you wouldn’t want to be known. Understand that any personal deets can be fodder for bullies and their minions to slander you with.

Examples of things better kept private are as follows (Some of these are no-brainers):

1. Your sex life, or lack of.

2. A drug addict in your family.

3. Any medical conditions or diseases.

4. Any mental illnesses.

5. Any legal troubles- even as minor as traffic tickets.

6. Family issues- divorce, child custody, births, deaths, etc.

7. Your past (if you’re old enough to have one).

8. Past abuse you may have suffered.

9. Your personal info (SS number, credit card number, birthdate, home adress, etc).

10. Email and passwords to social media accounts.

11. Names of your family members.

12. Never brag about your daughter’s beauty pageant or your son’s perfect grades.

13. Your views about the recent scandal at school or work.

14. Your hobbies and interests.

15. The TV show or movie you watched last night, especially if it’s a slasher show or filled with hot-buttered sex.

16. Never talk about politics! Ever! That’s a no-no subject!

 Bullies are already looking for dirty laundry. So, why air yours? When you’re a target of bullying, the less they know about you and your life, the better.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Triumphing Over Workplace Bullying (Part 2)

Retro Emoji rage anger boiling woman face pop art retro style

(Continued from Part 1…)

In the last post, I talked about how everything started out great and that I was well-liked by almost everyone. I also mentioned the incident when I responded in kind after Candi, a CNA, caught a bad attitude. Needless to say, I found out that, right or wrong, talking down to her was a no-no because she had connections.

And over several months, one by one, many people turned against me. Luckily, several of my real friends knew how Candi was and had no respect for her. They were the people who had my back, so I can say that I did have allies who took care of me.

However, there was a clear division at Shady Grove Living Center. There was the administrator, who I’ll call *Beau, *Cammie, the payroll clerk, the department heads,*Harry (who was Cammie’s husband), one maintenance guy, whose name was *Jules, and two CNAs, *Shelly was one and *Cheryl who were two flying monkeys. On our side were my supervisor Darnell, all of my coworkers (except for one suck up), a charge nurse, and the rest of the CNAs who had my back.

At first, the bullies made false reports about me to Darnell. On the days after my shift (I worked part-time in the evening), the third shift CNAs would complain that I hadn’t stocked the linen closets on each of the halls and that they had no clean bed pads, bedsheets, nor gowns for the residents who soiled their beds during the night.

But because I always thought ahead and could easily predict what these people would do, I had made sure to pull out my cellphone and take pictures of all my finished work at the end of my shift.

Once I was done stocking the linen closets, I took photos of all the  shelves inside, chock full of freshly clean linens. I then took pictures inside all the empty barrels that were marked “dirty laundry,” before clocking out and going home. And, with the time-stamps on each image, there was no question I’d done my job.

I took pictures every night, at the end of the shift. And I had proof to show Darnell every time they lied.

When that didn’t work, the bullies only turned up the harassment, as word quickly spread throughout the nursing home that I’d taken pictures of all finished work.

In a way, it was funny because each of the linen closets was directly across from a nurse’s desk, where the bullies would sit around and gossip. And I remember overhearing them make snide remarks about my camera and my taking pictures, to which I’d only snicker and chuckle to myself.

Harry, the head of maintenance, would talk pretty ugly to me, but I knew I wasn’t the only one because many times, I’d see him talk terrible to several others- even a few who worked for the nursing home. So, I didn’t feel like the Lone Ranger.

And because I’d already been a target of bullying in school, I knew what to expect as all bullies pull pretty much the same tactics, only adult bullies are much more sophisticated with it. Therefore, I was able to prepare, stay a few steps ahead, and outflank them.

During this time, I began to witness a couple of the bullies in this workplace clique commit a few illegal activities. On one instance, I worked a double shift to cover for a coworker who was sick.

Early one Saturday morning, I saw with my own eyes Harry walk into the back door of the nursing home, dressed in camouflage and his bright orange hunting vest. He crept down the hall past the laundry room, then stopped at the time clock and clocked in. Harry then filled out a bogus work order, then left.

He didn’t return until late that evening to clock out and leave again. I’ll never forget the look on his mug when he saw me sitting outside on my last break as he drove by in his shiny new pickup. And when I told a trusted friend at work a day or two later about what I’d seen, she wasn’t at all surprised.

“Girl! He’s been clocking out and going home on the weekends since I’ve been here! And I’ll tell you something else,” *Brenda told me, “Cammie’s been embezzling from this facility, and she’s been ripping off some of the residents who don’t have families- weaseling them into signing papers to leave their assets to her when they leave this world!”

I felt my eyes pop out of my head as Brenda gave me an ear full!

(Continued in Part 3…)