Deflating Bullies

After considering something that happened today in the blogisphere, I searched back through my old blog posts and found this one that partly addresses the situation. From June 11, 2012, here are my thoughts on dealing with bullies, cyber or otherwise.

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I remember one episode during my childhood when I was chased home by a group of girls I didn’t know. They kicked at me, called me names, and scared the bejesus out of me. I didn’t tell anyone at the time that this had happened – especially not my mother! If fact, this is the very first time I have mentioned that memory. I never knew what it was I had done to cause them to treat me this way – because I was sure it must have been something I’d done or said that caused the abuse – but I was relieved when it never happened again.

We didn’t talk about bullies or bullying then. They were just a fact of the school yard and playground. And we dealt with bullies and bullying alone, and in whatever way we could. This usually meant internalizing the insults, taunts, and physical…

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4 responses

  1. Author Rebecca Heishman

    I experienced bullying as an adult in the workplace several years ago. My experience was brutal and dehumanizing, and after being subjected to years of it by a middle-management female with sociopathic behavior, I reached the point where I no longer felt worthy of living. I tolerated my emotional beatings silently, day-after-day, year-after-year, until my health failed me. I knew how mentally ill the woman was when, one day, I pulled up to a stop light, and she was in a huge SUV next to me, and she tried to run me and my car into on-coming traffic by swerving into my driver’s door. I will never forget the look of hatred in her crazy eyes. My husband and I even discussed the fact that, should anything happen to me that might not have been of my own doing, he was to consider her and her mental illness, and act on it. Long story short….I left my place of employment because multiple sclerosis destroyed me. But, I am positive that the bullying experiences I had in those previous years added to my health problems, and I’m sure that it exacerbated an illness that had been dormant in my body for many years. I suffer Post Traumatic Stress Disorder as a result of her. I am not a military veteran, so I don’t consider my PTSD to be anywhere close to what they suffer. But, for those years, with my bully destroying me from the inside out, I was fighting a very dark and ugly war of my own. When illness took me out of there, I did research on the type of person who would emotionally destroy another. I would recommend you go to Workplace Bullying Institute. Get the book, The Bully at Work by Gary Namie. It’s not only for understanding the workplace bully, but bullies in general. They are, in most cases, mentally ill. I learned about all this after I was physically and emotionally destroyed. I had no idea that there were laws protecting me. I am a quiet person. I didn’t fight for myself. One thing I learned from my research….nice people are the people that these crazy bullies single out because they see our quiet natures as being a sign of weakness. As for your present bully, I am experiencing some of that myself, courtesy of Facebook. There are some angry people in the world, and I don’t care to live in their part of cyberspace. People who care about you and know the quality of person that you are, and understand how much you care about others will see the truth. Don’t let the bastards make you sick the way I allowed a mentally-disturbed woman to take years off my life. These people are sick. Just avoid them. And, one thing I learned, for sure….you can’t argue or reason with a crazy person and win. I’m scared to death of these people now. They can get into your head and break your heart.

    1. I’m so sorry that you went through all of this, Becky. But thank you for telling us, because it’s very important for those who have never experienced bullying to know that it can continue to go on forever, if we don’t stand up to the bullies. Perhaps just one bully will read this blog post and your comment and may see what it is that they do to the rest of us. It may not have a dramatic effect, but at least it’s a start – and we are all talking about bullying more openly now than we ever did before. Thanks for the book recommendations, too.

  2. I’m so sorry you went through this. I hope your bully has moved on now. Bullying is such a huge problem in schools, but it’s become a problem in the workplace as well. Cyber bullies are the most cowardly because they hide behind a computer screen and usually a fake name. Thank you for sharing your story.

    1. Thanks, Tricia. I was the one who moved on, and away, from the bully, but I hear the person is still at it. Fortunately, I discovered it’s possible to block people: on Facebook, on Twitter, and from emailing me. Phew! At least we have that option for “walking away” on social media.

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