Humiliation: The Bully’s Strongest Weapon

Humiliation and exile

Humiliation, unlike embarrassment or shame, leave’s a mark on the person who suffers it, and the stigma which surrounds the person can follow them for the rest of their lives. Why? Because people who’ve been publicly humiliated are always thought of and remembered by their humiliation. Think, Harvey Weinstein and the sex scandals which broke a year or so ago.

Although ol’ Harvey’s humiliation is well-deserved, not so for victims of bullying. Innocent victims are often humiliated by their bullies and stuck in an uncomfortable and degrading position while others gather around excitedly to taunt and abuse them.

Humiliation has been used down through the ages. Tarring and feathering was a technique used back in olden times, which involved covering people with hot tar and feathers and parading them through the crowded streets on a horse-drawn cart. Think of Chuck Connors’ character, Jason McCord, in the old western series, “Branded”.

To humiliate someone is to assert power over them by denying and destroying their personal dignity. Through history, humiliation has been the most common and effective means of punishment, abuse, and oppression. It’s not the threat of imprisonment or even death that is a deterrent of crime; it is the dread of humiliation.

It’s a fact! People fear losing face worse than they do a violent death!
Humiliation is also used to maintain a social hierarchy and to emphasize that the group, alumni, organization, or community as a whole supersedes the individual. It is designed to defuse any threat to a particular order or someone’s esteemed position.

A crowd of people surrounded the red man. Accusation of crime, mob law over a person, lynch court. The leader in the center of the crowd, the leader, an example for diving. Angry crowd

In student hierarchies in schools, bullies at the top of the pecking order go to great lengths to protect their often ill-gotten status and uphold their positions while the other kids are forced to submit to different kinds of debasement. And it’s the same in the workplace too.

Anytime a target of bullying defends himself against harassment and abuse; the bullies will often use humiliation to retaliate and subdue the victim by way of jokes, pranks or setting the target up to get in trouble with the staff or a horrific beating by other kids. Bullies at the top will also spread vicious rumors and lies against their object.

Most forms of humiliation involve invading the victim’s privacy and sneakily taking videos of him/her in compromising positions.

Example 1:
A targeted girl is taking a shower in the locker room or undressing in the privacy of her bedroom, and the bullies hide behind a corner or just outside her bedroom window at night and take videos of her with their smartphones. They then spread the videos to other classmates. Or worse, a girl naively sends her boyfriend a nude selfie. They break up. He then shares it on social media and the photo goes viral!

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Example 2:
A targeted boy is standing in front of a urinal using the bathroom and a bully hides in the stall next to him, peering through the crack and the lense of the camera on his smartphone, taking videos of his manly areas. He then sends the video to all his buddies, and they laugh and joke about how small, crooked, his package is (or it could be the mole, anything different about it). Remember the suicides of Tyler Clementi and Amanda Todd and the circumstances surrounding each case.

Example 3: A bright worker is set up to fail in the workplace. And when he does, it follows him the rest of his working life.

Humiliation is horrible for anyone. The reason it is so devastating is that it involves negative things with which the victim will always be associated, and there will be no getting away from it! Embarrassment and shame are only temporary. Humiliation, however, can follow a person for the rest of their lives!

So, if you are a victim of bullying, protect yourself. Also, I cannot stress this advice enough! No matter how much your boyfriend/girlfriend may claim he/she loves you! No matter how much the person begs and pleads for you to do it, nor what they threaten you with if you don’t! Never, ever, ever let anyone talk you into sending a nude pic! Ever!

And if anyone ever films you in an indecent position without your knowing it, know that what they did is against the law! Speak out about it and file not only criminal charges but a civil suit for damages!

The more you know, the better you protect yourself!

Bullying By Instigation (Part 2)

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In the first part, we discussed one of the ways bullies bully by instigation- 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 more 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!”

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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, out of the blue, becomes chummy with the target and pretends to have a change of heart 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.

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. 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.

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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.

But 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?

Bullies “Need” Their Targets

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They want you to think that you need them! You don’t. In fact, it’s just the opposite. They need you! Let me explain further:

Bullies need targets as guinea pigs to demonstrate their perceived power and might on.

They need victims to feel better about themselves.

Bullies need targets to blame their stupidity and bad behavior on.

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Bullies need victims to scapegoat and to be a dumping ground for all their problems and shortcomings.

If you’re a target, Your bullies need you as a shield to cover their own cowardice.

They need you to entertain and get laughs from their audiences.

And they need you to look cool and in control in front of everyone else.

Understand that bullies need you more than you will ever need them!