With the many shootings which have happened, such as the Jonesboro, Parkland, and Santa Fe school massacres, it has been placed on my heart to write about something which needs to be discussed but, sadly, isn’t by many. It should be no surprise that bullying is almost always a factor in the uptick of school shootings, which have plagued our country for the last twenty years. Before we go any further, let me remind you that being bullied, no matter how severe, is absolutely no excuse for taking human lives, and I would never condone such an action!
However, many shooters have been victims of bullying, who were pushed to the breaking point. They finally snapped after many years of relentless and repetitive abuse by their peers and being rebuffed by school staff in their attempts to report bullying incidences and get help. Therefore, they resort to bringing a gun to school and leaving death and mayhem in their wake! The shooters then turn the gun on themselves to avoid prison, and the end result is that families and loved ones on both sides and entire communities are left devastated!
One such example is the Columbine Shooting in April of 1999. I have read many articles about this particular case. It was stated by many experts that the perpetrators, Eric Harris and Dylan Klebold, had for years been bullied outcasts, who’d only gotten fed up with the continuous negative treatment and finally went into a rage and lashed out, as have so many other victims since then. Again, I cannot stress enough how wrong and counterproductive bringing a gun to school really is! However, I believe there is something we’re missing here- the issue of mental health and bullying, which often leads to these tragedies.
Before the pandemic, school shootings had become so common that they’d become a political issue and fodder for the agendas of both the left and the right wings, with the left pushing for gun control and the right’s push to arm teachers and tighten school security. Although these certainly are legitimate issues that need to be addressed before the end of the pandemic and schools are fully functional again, it seems that almost no one is discussing the root cause of these shootings- bullying and/or mental health.
I believe that “An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure”! Perhaps if we reach these bullied and at-risk youth and show them that they are not alone and that they matter just like everyone else, we will be able to save them from the possibility of becoming violent and, ultimately, bring down these horribly high statistics! I will explain this in more detail in part two.
Telling you to “get over it” is typical of bullies. The reason they tell you this is to shame and to silence you. In telling you to “let it go,” bullies make you out to be unstable or a drama-filled person who carries a grudge and can’t leave the past behind.
I don’t hate my classmates. I thank them. Because if it weren’t for my classmates, I might have never found my niche and the thing I enjoy doing the most. In their torment of me all those years ago, they inspired me to become a champion for the bullied, an author of 4 books, and a blogger whose niche is bullying. So, I thank them from the bottom of my heart. In truth, I can never thank them enough.
Here’s the thing. There’s a difference between holding a grudge and accepting that you suffered abuse. You can acknowledge what happened without holding onto bitterness and hate.
Grudges, bitterness, and hate – unhealthy
Grudges are unhealthy. A person who carries a grudge has anger, resentment, and hate boiling inside them and will often seek revenge. A grudge-holder handles any past victimhood he suffered in very destructive ways.
People who hold grudges only let the past hold them back from growing, from enjoying new friendships and relationships with others, and from success. Because a grudge holder carries so much anger and bitterness, they only repel people who would be potential friends and partners. They only attract more negativity and adversity into their lives.
Acknowledgment of Past Victimization – healthy
On the other hand, acknowledging or accepting prior victimization and how it hurt you is one of the healthiest things you can do. The person who does this doesn’t hold a grudge and doesn’t hate the people who abused her. She only feels sorry for them.
Survivors who accept the past realize that there can be valuable lessons learned from being a past target of bullying and abuse and often use it as their rocket fuel. Like I have done, they do years of research into bullying and into bullies’ mindsets and the victims they select. They consistently search for answers as to why bullies bully, what bullies look for in victims, and much, much more.
They then speak out about their experiences and the pain they suffered to bring awareness to the world- consciousness that, yes, such evil does exist. A former victim who accepts the past freely talks of and spreads awareness of bullying and abuse only grows and acquires wisdom. She then uses that wisdom to reach out to others who endure the same or prevent others from experiencing the same pain.
You would be surprised how rewarding this is to a survivor. Through using past pain for good, many survivors have achieved healing and gotten closure. Also, these people often make fulfilling and life-long friendships and connections through their work toward their cause.
Expect your old tormentors to come for you if you raise awareness.
Sadly though, it’s easy to get these two things confused. Former classmates from school have accused me of being bitter and full of hate. They have blasted me for having the gall to speak out and write about the brutality and the vile and downright devilish behavior they displayed years ago. Luckily, I see right through them.
‘You see? Even years after the fact, abusers despise it when you take the pain they caused you in the past and turn it into something that can help people. And when you take something that was meant to defeat you and turn it into something that helps others and only makes you stronger, oh man, do they hate that!
All that time, they tried to tear you down! All that combined effort! And still! You didn’t drown! You only took it and turned it into something positive, and all that work they put forth to bury you ended up wasted! Understand that bullies become furious when they realize they weren’t able to destroy you.
Anytime you speak out about any past abuse you suffered, it should be not only accepted but expected that your old tormentors will come for you, telling you to get over it. Not only are they angry at you because you didn’t crash and burn, but they’re also very much afraid that you’ll expose them somehow or that you’ll succeed. Don’t take it personally.
Instead, take it as confirmation of their guilt- as proof that they were and still are the ones who have the problem. When old bullies bash you for speaking out, they only out themselves. Don’t let them silence you, nor allow them to stop you from reaching out to those who need to hear your story because you might end up saving a life!
Turn your pain into power! Be a friend and advocate for the bullied!
Ever! It’s better to sit back, relax, and let Karma deal with them because I guarantee that Karma can do a much better job than you ever could. Besides, do you want to expend that kind of energy? That kind of ugliness? No. Because you’re better than that!
And they aren’t worth the effort. Revenge isn’t as sweet as it looks in the movies. In fact, it’s cancer that will eat you up inside if you dwell on it!
What’s so bad about hate is that you’re so preoccupied with the people who wronged you, and they may still have you convinced that they’re all-powerful and untouchable and that you’re powerless and at their mercy, though you may not admit it.
And this is why you’re just itching to exact revenge on them. You find yourself ruminating over the many times they bullied and abused you, and it will play over in your mind like a broken record. You’ll be plagued with the thought that they got away with it. Understand that all this will only eat down into your soul, rot, and cause nothing but more pain.
So, ask yourself. Are they worth it?
I understand that sinking feeling of defeat you get from knowing of the possibility that your bullies didn’t get theirs- that they can walk away free without the slightest clue that what they did was wrong. It’s normal to feel a sense of injustice.
And ignorance is bliss, and bullies are the most blissful people on the face of the earth! But understand that there’s a term for your bullies’ ignorance. It’s called willful ignorance, and it happens when your bullies convince themselves that they did nothing wrong and that you got what you deserved.
But realize that this is precisely what your bullies want you to think. Otherwise, they wouldn’t get such a thrill from it.
Revenge always escalates the bullying because bullies are known to get brutal to get what they want. And if you try to give them payback, it will only turn into a game of ping pong. It will go back and forth, back and forth again. It’ll be an endless game of tit for tat.
Continually replaying the bullying over and over in your head isn’t good at all! Because if you keep this up, you’ll never find happiness nor peace of mind. How can you move on with your life when you’re reliving the trauma?
Here are a few ways to reclaim your happiness and your life:
1.Seek Therapy. Never be too proud to seek therapy because it can help you process the negative feelings that poison your life. Therapy works. I’m living proof.
2. Write about it in a journal. Believe it or not, writing about it helps you unload and get it out of your system, especially when bullies have cut you off from support through smear campaigns. Not only are you building a good case and keeping a record of the bullying to use in case you go to court, but you are also providing yourself much-needed therapy. Writing is very therapeutic and cathartic. And once you get it out, even if only on paper, you’ll be surprised at how much better you’ll feel.
3. Spend time with people who feed your soul- the ones who love and care for you. Spending time with the people who love you the most can be a buffer to your self-esteem. It has a way of making up for all the hurt bullies cause you by giving you an equal or more amount of positivity in your life. Keep company with those who make you feel best about yourself. Share happy times with them, laugh with them, because laughter truly is the best medicine!
4. Capture happy moments. Again, bullies have given you enough negative, sad and stressful moments. Why not balance that with just as many happy moments? And the best part is that we have the power to create those moments!
5. Go on a trip. Sometimes, it’s just good to steal away to a beach house on a secluded beach with your family or friends. Or you can visit an out of state relative. Whatever you decide, getting out of town helps to bring you out of stagnation and revive you. It also gives you a sense of adventure, and that always lifts the mood. So, pack your things and go!
6. Meditate. Having been bullied can flood your mind with fear and negativity. It helps to shut off your mind, even for five minutes every day. Meditate on positive things. Focus on yourself and your personal goals. Meditate on God. It will help relax you and make you feel so much better.
7. Exercise. Exercise not only makes you healthier and promotes weight loss and better muscle tone, but it can also be one heck of a stress buster. Whether you like High-Intensity Training with weights or a brisk walk through the park, it increases endorphins and other feel-good chemicals to help you feel better.
8. Indulge in hobbies. Hobbies not only make you feel accomplished, but they take your mind off your bullies and the bullying you suffered in the past. So, find something you enjoy doing the most and concentrate on it. Being creative is one of the best things you can do for yourself.
9. Focus on your goals. If you focus on your goals, you won’t have time to focus on your bullies. They don’t deserve even to be an afterthought. So, focus on your goals and where you want to go. And make life all about those things. Keep doing your thing!
I want you to understand that bullies get so much pleasure from your misery. So, do all you can to add as much joy to your life as possible. And once you do, take pleasure in knowing that, if your bullies could see that you’re happy without them, they’d be so furious!
Sometimes you must play mind games with yourself. Does it sound strange? Possibly. But whatever works. Right?
No, you can’t pretend that the pain isn’t there. And you can’t bury it or stuff it down because if it’s there, it will leak out eventually. But you do have to process it and do a lot of work on yourself before it goes away.
It will take a lot of work and time to do, but it will be worth it in the end. And you’re worth it! It’s all about self-care. And there’s nothing better than investing in yourself! I guarantee it!
You already know the first three ways bullies use gaslighting. Here are more of their evil tactics and what you can do to keep your self-esteem intact.
4. Isolating the Target (Divide and Conquer)
Bullies often force their targets into isolation through social aggression (spreading rumors and lies about the person or intimidating his/her associates).
In doing this, bullies strategically turn the target’s friends and associates against them to cut him/her off from any support or protection they might otherwise receive. Once the subject is isolated, the bullies then move in for the kill and take the bullying to new heights.
If the target expresses the desire to change schools or workplaces, the bullies may try to discourage him/her by convincing them that they won’t be treated any better in the new environment or attempting to block the targets’ transfer and cut off any means of escape.
5. Bullies Make Themselves Out to be Superior and Cunningly Convince the Target that he/she needs them to get along.
Bullies slyly force their target to believe he/she somehow needs their approval. If the bullies can make the target dependent on them, their power and control only increase.
Bullies do this by convincing to target that they (the bullies) are the only ones who can better his/her (the target’s) situation- that only through them (the bullies) will the person be able to make friends and enjoy positive relationships! And only with their (the bullies’) permission will the target find happiness and fulfillment.
Also, bullies make the target believe that they must submit to their every whim and wish, no matter how demeaning, before they grant him/her relief from the attacks. But understand that bullies will never leave you alone! It’s is only another tactic to assert domination!
6. Empty Promises
“If you do this, I’ll go away quietly and leave you alone.” “If you do that, I’ll be your friend.” “If you’d only do XYZ, I’ll make things easier for you.”
Don’t buy any of it! You can never appease a bully. They will never go away or stop the harassment. They only make empty promises to keep you under their control. Understand that bullies have an insatiable appetite for power, control, and destruction.
They are like bottomless pits, and no matter what you do to please them, they’ll only continue or increase the torment. You must realize that no amount of bullying is ever enough for a bully. Bullies are power and drama addicts, and harassment of their targets is like a drug to them. They can never get enough! Bullies always come back for more! In short, they become drunk on their own power.
The only way to stop a bully is to either use reverse psychology, put the fear of God into him/her by calling them out publicly, or go no contact if you can. If you can’t, then use the first two suggestions. It may or may not work, but keep it up. Because if you just clam up and say nothing, you’ll feel terrible about yourself later.
There are two things bullies fear most. Losing face and losing power, which would only come from having their evil exposed and and with the target ceasing to care what they say and think altogether. NOTE: When you stop caring (which can only happen after you see the bullies for the pathetic souls they really are), it’ll be so much easier to come back with a witty, one-line counter-dig and keep walking.
Another important note: DOCUMENT EVERYTHING! Write it all down in detail to keep records of this kind of stuff! You may need it!!!!!!
Jot down what happened (in detail), including date and time it happened, where it happened, who the bullies are, names of any bystanders, teachers, supervisors, etc., and if possible, why it happened (was it retaliation?)! EVERYTHING!
Find ways to expose bullies and reclaim your power.
Gaslight- to manipulate someone by psychological means into doubting their sanity.
Remember that bullying is all about domination and control. Once the bully selects a target and begins their reign of terror over the chosen victim, they will do everything possible to maintain that dominance. Also, understand that bullies get a huge psychological payoff at the victim’s expense. Abusing their targets gives bullies a rush of power and a sense of authority and control.
If there is a culture of bullying at a school, workplace, or community, bullies are also rewarded with attention, high social status and promotions from others while the target suffers the opposite. And a bully will fight like crazy to keep those benefits should the target speak out and shed light on the behavior.
Once the target sees the behavior for what it is and begins to assert their right to be treated fairly, bullies will become angry and afraid. They will see the target as a threat to their power and increase the harassment to subdue, silence and punish the person.
Seasoned bullies maintain power by emotionally abusing, brainwashing, and psychological abuse to disempower the target and make themselves seem bigger and better than what they are. They use these methods because psycho/emotional bullying leaves no physical evidence and is much easier to deny.
They do this by convincing their target (and everyone else) that he/she is defective or no good, thereby stripping the target’s confidence and self-esteem.
Here are ways bullies gaslight their targets:
1. Persistent lying
Bullies tell vague lies and trying to convince you that you are mentally unstable, less than, deserving of the mistreatment, or that you’re somehow defective. Bullies will make statements to others such as,
“He’s a waste of space, and he needs to realize it already!”
“She’s such an embarrassment! How does she even show her face in public every day?”
“Who gives a #$% about his feelings! He doesn’t matter!”
“She brought it all on herself!”
Bullies will also tell their targets things like:
“What are you smiling about? Nobody likes you! Remember?”
“I’m not bullying you! You’re just over-reacting!”
Displeased woman looking at her growing nose and trying to stop it with her finger isolated on white background
“You’re just being (paranoid, overly sensitive, a crybaby, etc.)! You need help!”
“Nobody’s mistreating you! You’re just playing the victim to look innocent to everyone else!
“You’re so (arrogant, retarded, crazy, ugly, fat, skinny, etc.) nobody believes a word you say!”
I could go on and on.
Bullies deliberately repeat these lies over and over again and for a long time to convince the target that they are right. Understand that this constant repetition has a purpose! To instill insecurity in the victim, wear them down and force him/her to resign themselves and acquiesce.
It serves to brainwash the target and force him/her to believe the bully’s lies. As a result, the target becomes riddled with confusion, social anxiety and shame. Eventually, the person loses the ability to counter the attacks
You must realize that this is the bully’s strategy to render control and keep the target under their control and from rebelling against the abuse.
2. Wearing the Target Down and forcing him/her to agree with them.
Bullies continue to put the target down and marginalize them until he/she is so tired or afraid of defending against them that the person shuts down, grows numb to the abuse and surrenders to the bullies.
Bullying, friendship and people concept. Girl patronizing screaming pointing finger at shy timid nerdy woman who is looking down
3. Become Highly Aggressive When the Target Calls Out the Abuse
Bullies may try to maintain their power by intensifying and escalating the attacks in addition to blaming and shaming the target. Understand that this is designed to subdue and further subjugate the person by intimidation and to force him/her into silence and submission. It also allows the bully to escape accountability and to have a green light for continued and future attacks.
If you’re a survivor of bullying and abuse and you finally begin speaking out about your bullies and their abusive behavior, you instantly put them on high alert. You put them in defense mode, and they will do one, some, or all of four things:
1. Lash out at you. This is, perhaps, the most revealing. Many bullies and abusers will go into a tirade. They’ll scream and yell at you, they’ll curse you out and call you the ugliest names- everything but a child of God. I know it’s difficult to do, but don’t panic and don’t be afraid.
See it for what it is- you just forced them to reveal their true colors because when your bullies (or former bullies) attack you by getting enraged and flying off the handle, that’s when you know you’ve busted them. Or, more appropriately, you’ve forced them to bust themselves! Yay for you!
2. Deny their abuse, and sometimes to your face. Lots of times, bullies and abusers may confront you either calmly or aggressively, claiming they never bullied or mistreated you. They may even through out subtle hints that you must’ve misinterpreted them or that you “have everything misconstrued.” Again, no matter how calmly or subtly they do it, this is gaslighting and it speaks volumes about their character.
3. Defame you. The second you see their bullying and abuse for what it is and call it out, is the second bullies and abusers lose control over you. If these people can no longer control you, they will control your image in the eyes of others. And they will tell everyone who will listen what a lowdown piece of garbage you are.
But, as difficult as it may be, don’t let it phase you. Realize that they’re panicking and in a mad rush to do some damage control because they’re afraid that word about their true nature just might get around and cause them to lose face.
Most of the time, your former bullies and abusers will tell others that you’re “crazy” and that you’re having some sort of mental episode. Again, they’re only revealing their true colors because if you weren’t telling the truth, they wouldn’t care and wouldn’t react so desperately. So, always see this as an admission of guilt.
4. Avoid you. These types won’t bother you. Instead, they’ll avoid you like the plague because they’re scared. Understand that this is the best outcome because if they’re avoiding you, you don’t have to worry about them abusing and bullying you again. Why? Because they know they’ve been found out and that word of their abuse is already very quickly circulating.
So, the last thing they want is to do anything that has even a scant possibility of making them look guilty because they fear their reputations are already on shaky ground. Although these people are cowards, they’re making the smartest move by simply staying away from you and avoiding even mentioning your name.
However, be advised that not all people who avoid you will stay away from you for long, they may avoid you long enough to defame you to others or they just might be secretly plotting revenge against you for daring to open your mouth. Different bullies and abusers react in different ways and may use any or all four of the above defensive measures.
You must realize that bullies and abusers, even those who are formerly so, count on your silence and they detest, or more appropriately, fear being exposed. Exposure is the worst thing that could happen to them because they risk losing respect in the community and other people seeing them for the monsters they are.
Bullies make everything about appearances and when you will back the curtain, you make liars and hypocrites out of them.
So, naturally, they’re going to either attack you, avoid you, or both. They may make statements such as:
“Well, we were just kids then.”
“But that’s all water under the bridge.”
“Just let bygones be bygones.”
”Just let sleeping dogs lie.”
They may tell you to “get over it” or accuse you of bringing up old stuff. Understand that any time people make these statements, their main goal is to shut you up.
But they have other objectives as well:
1. To minimize their past brutality and the impact it all had on you
2. To make you look like a whiner who just can’t “let the past go.”
3. To cover their backsides and minimize any dents to their reputations or any backlash they might receive.
Again, don’t be afraid. Instead, see it as they’re unwittingly revealing themselves and let them go at it. Let them launch their personal attacks.
Before I close, I’d like to make another huge point: When you speak out about your bullies and their abuse, you force them to explain themselves. Anyone who must explain and justify themselves or their behavior is never in a powerful position.
So, in forcing your bullies to explain themselves you instantly snatch them out of their position of power and move them into a vulnerable position. In other words, you automatically turn the tables and leave the bullies in a very helpless and subordinate place. In short, you strip them of power. Ouch!
In forcing the bully to explain their past or present behavior, you instantly remove their “authority”- their power because neither power nor authority ever explains itself. It doesn’t have to.
Hence the reason bullies despise even the thought of having to give explanations because it puts them in a weak and subordinate position.
Anytime you stand up to or reject a bully, you instantly change the power dynamic. You immediately take your personal power back and you automatically put the bully in a position of weakness and inferiority. You flip the script and take the position of power over the bully. This is why bullies cannot handle rejection because they feel that they must always be in the position of power in a relationship, especially the bully/target relationship.
A bully gets angry enough when anyone stands up to them. But if the person standing up to them happens to be the target- someone that they’ve grown accustomed to abusing- someone who they deem inferior, that’s when the bully really loses their marbles.
This is because the target is most likely on the bottom of the pecking order and when she finally bucks up and stands up to a bully, she then (figuratively) trades places with the bully and puts the bully on the bottom of the pecking order, if only for that moment. That’s what the bully can’t handle and that’s why he/she will explode with rage.
The bully’s unspoken message is:
“How dare you!”
“Who is this phlegm-wad to stand up to me? ME!
“This piece of scum is supposed to be under me and here she is talking to me and acting like she’s OVER me! Oh no! This can’t happen! Who does this loser think she is!”
“The nerve of that &#$%!”
“She’s making trouble and now I’ve got to really act out to put her back under me where she belongs!”
Understand that bullies rely on fear, overwhelming strength, and coercion to get what they want from you. And they’ve been steamrolling people and getting their way for so long that they’ve become quite arrogant and self-satisfied. And when you finally have enough of their gas and set your foot down, you can bet that it’s going to throw these types of people off. And do you know what else it’s going to do?
It’s going to blast a huge hole in their ego and it will shock the bejeebers out of them. Then the bullies will become highly PO’ed. In fact, they’ll become so angry that they’ll more than likely go from zero to one hundred in a matter of seconds. If the bully is a narcissist (and most bullies are), he will go into what is called narcissistic rage. And trust me, you don’t want to be anywhere around when this happens.
So, keep this in the back of your mind and be prepared. If you are a target of bullying and anytime you get fed up with others’ abuse and finally grow a spine, you can bet that your bullies will do anything they can to break it. It’s why they escalate the bullying when a target stops accepting the bad treatment and begins speaking out and asserting themselves.
Understand that a bully has a very delicate ego and his ego is involved. When you tell them to go kick rocks, you undermine their perceived superiority over you. Even worse, you put them into an inferior position and the bully knows that. Bullies are very prideful and their pride takes a huge blow anytime you talk back or fight back. And most bullies would rather die than to be made inferior, especially to their targets.
When you stand up to your bullies, be prepared for a battle because they will become vindictive. Your bullies will seek revenge on you and they won’t stop coming after you until they get it. Realize that they don’t care if they’re the ones who’ve mistreated you all these years and they don’t care that you’ve suffered.
The only thing they are thinking at this moment is that you challenged their superiority and authority. You are a target and nothing else. You are beneath them, yet you had the nerve to undermine them and make them look like punks and now you must pay a price for it. This is how bullies think.
Now yes, some bullies will back down but many will not.
However, know that you must defend yourself no matter what because you have a right to safety and to be treated with dignity. And if the bullies and bullying become too much to deal with, there’s nothing wrong with leaving the environment. Realize that leaving is not running and it’s not being fearful or “chicken.” It’s self-care, it’s smarts, and it’s self-preservation. You must do what you must to protect not only your physical health, but also your mental health.
In movies and television, we see scenarios where targets stand up to bullies and automatically either get left alone or become friends with their former tormentors. However, in most cases, this is not reality. Remember that bullies are relentless.
Here are the tactics bullies use when a target stands up for themselves:
If you are a target, you must realize that bullies will not relinquish their power so easily. They will not be good sports and hand your human rights back over to you, nor will they bow out of your life gracefully. Bullies have an insatiable need to wield power over another, and without that power, they feel lost.
Why? Because bullies have no redeemable qualities and they’re losers in life. And since they can’t get power by their own merit, the only way left to get it is by ruining someone else’s life.
Make no mistake about it. When you kick unsavory people out of your life, they will do the following:
1. They will gaslight you- by adding their spin to make you look and feel like the villain and maligning you to others to destroy your good name and credibility.
2. They will lay guilt trips- by trying to convince you that you are at fault or that the abuse is your imagination. Bullies are masters at this, especially female bullies who use feminine charm to deceive bystanders and authority figures.
3. They may recruit followers and start a smear campaign- by recruiting followers to spread rumors and lies. They will also try to turn your friends against you. It happened to me many times and it would come as retaliation for my having the gall to stand up to them and assert my God-given, divine right not to be abused or taken advantage of.
4. They will turn your friends against you- Females, although becoming more and more physically violent with time, commit much of their bullying by Dividing and Conquering- attacking the targets’ relationships to turn everyone against the target to isolate them. Think about it. The chances are that your friends know your deepest, darkest secrets. They would know the most intimate details about your life. Friends are a GOLDMINE of information to bullies.
5. They will project their shortcomings onto you– Bullies have flaws and their greatest fear is having them exposed. What better way to keep their imperfections hidden than to either project them onto the target?
6. They will distract others’ attention away from their flaws by pointing out yours– What better way is there to hide their own shortcomings than putting the spotlight on yours? It shouldn’t be so easy but it is!
If bullies can’t control you, they will control how others see you.
They use the above strategies not only to cover their backsides and to punish you for daring to grow a spine and defend yourself, but also to close you off from any possible help or protection.
Once the target is isolated, the bullies move in for the kill. Now, they can do with you whatever they choose to do, freely and with impunity because if everyone is against you, the least likely they are to report or stop the abuse. In the minds of others, you deserve what’s happening to you.
Bullies want to, figuratively, hold the target hostage, and they will resort to any means necessary to keep him/her on emotional lock down and “in their place.”
They will do it with physical violence when exclusion, subtle digs, verbal assaults, gaslighting, and other forms of psychological abuse no longer have an impact. Bullies will commit their violence either by committing bodily harm themselves or sending someone else to do their savagery for them.
This does not mean that you should not stand up for yourself because you should. However, when you do, be prepared. The torment will get worse before it gets better. Be strong. Be brave and know that none of it is your fault.
The more you know.
In many cases, I’ve found that bitterness is the main ingredient of bullying behavior. It is the reason why bullies desire to make someone else suffer. Because people mistreated them in the past, they want to see someone else get abused and will go out of their way to make that happen.
Understand that it makes the bitter bully feel better to see someone else suffer as they have. These people will look for slights and often find them when none are there.
These bullies are also vengeful, spiteful, and look for ways to retaliate against those they feel have mistreated or ignored them. They have pinned up rage toward their targets and will have feelings of loathing toward them.
They have anger, disappointment, sadness, and resentment all balled into a mish-mash of toxic goo!
These people are continually looking for a fight and thrive on drama. If they can find neither one, they’ll create it.
They’ll make an offhand remark to put another person on defense or do something to annoy someone to bait them into an altercation. Then when it’s over with, they feel better.
To these kinds of people, life has done them wrong- cheated them in some way. And they feel they have a right to spew their vitriol.
I want you to understand that bullies aren’t happy people. They can’t be!
And they can’t be happy for others’ successes or good fortune. Any success of another is only proof to them that they haven’t been given a fair hand. That’s the reason these kinds of bullies will often bully those who have positive things going in their lives.
They go after these victims to “tear them down,” “put them in their place” and keep them there.
The only way you can handle a bitter person is to boot them out of your life and avoid them like the plague. Whatever you do, don’t engage!
Bitter bullies must live with emotions they cannot handle, which is why they must have a target. They need an easy mark to unload all their negative feelings on so that they can feel better in knowing that they’re not the only one who feels bad.
Making others feel rotten is gratifying for these types of bullies. Misery loves company. How they feel better is to make you feel worse! But would they admit that? Never! Because it would make them look inferior and defeated.
Many bullies have themselves been emotionally injured by other bullies. However, it’s no excuse for the way they act. You can feel sorry for them, yes. But you don’t have to tolerate the way they treat you.
Disengage, then get away with your self-esteem intact!
You don’t deserve to have these bloodsuckers in your life! The sooner you get far away from these types, the better!
I’ve read and heard many stories of schools retaliating against parents for speaking out about the bullying their child suffers while attending class, and for their (the parents’) refusal to keep silent. These stories are heartbreaking.
Understand that school officials are elected officials- politicians. And schools will protect their reputations by any means.
Here are ways schools try to hide bullying:
1. They vehemently deny bullying in their facilities.
2. They protect bullies.
3. They don’t report bullying incidents to the child’s parents and refuse to show any videos of bullying or fights to the bullied child’s parents.
4. They answer any questions with blanket statements or refuse to comment altogether.
5. They threaten to call Children’s Services and have the target removed from their home.
6. They have the parents banned from the school.
7. They have the parent arrested.
8. They threaten to have the child reported to the juvenile authorities.
9. They have the child arrested and sent to juvie.
Schools have more power than we realize, and if their reputation is at risk, some will do anything to silence the bullied child and their parents and shut down any awareness of any bullying that goes on.
Also, understand that schools have Sovereign Immunity and will hide behind it. Sovereign Immunity is the stipulation that protects a federal or state government entity from litigation. Therefore, it’s difficult to file a lawsuit against a school or school district. Lawsuits against schools have been filed and, yes, even won. But the statistics of such are low.
Here are things you can do as a parent:
1. Keep speaking out- through social media, word of mouth, and even the news media if you have to.
2. If you live in a one-party consent area, plant a recording device somewhere on your child to record any bullying.
3. Save any emails to and from the school. You’ll want to leave a trail.
4. Document everything in detail and have your child do their own documenting. Include date, time, what happened, and the names of bullies, bystanders, and school staff. Be sure and write down where it happened and if possible, why it happened. Also, jot down any events that led up to the bullying. Include as many details as possible!!!!!
It’s always best to keep good records and keep them in a safe and undisclosed place!!!