There are so many people with a legitimate illnesses which cause severe pain (Lupus, Fibromyalgia, Rheumatoid Arthritis, Addison’s Disease and so many other ailments), but unfairly judged for being “addicts”! My heart goes out to you all!
Here is an article from another blogger about bullying and how to ID a primary victim of bullying. This article is great because all to often, the primary target has a hard time telling others what happened due to shame or fear of retaliation, making it more difficult to get the help they need. Thank you, threetimes for this article!
If you are a victim of bullying, then I’m sure that on many occasions, you have wondered why bullies try to turn your friends and everyone else against you. Here’s an in-depth explanation:
In his book, “The Art of Seduction”, Robert Greene said it best when he quoted, “Few are drawn to the person, whom others avoid or neglect; people gather around those who have already attracted interest.”
It’s human nature to want to be around someone who seems to be desired by others and to avoid lone wolves. All through history, people have had a tendency to assume that those who are loners are also unwanted or defected somehow. Bullies consciously know this, so they stop at nothing to turn everyone against you…friends, teachers, principals, bosses, and sometimes yes…ever family members.
Bullies do this not only to make you look unappealing to others, but also as a means to garner support for the lies and rumors they have spread about the victim…for validation of their words and make them more convincing, while making the victim look bad. They also do this to discredit the victim in case he/she tries to report the attacks and call the bullies into account. It’s just another way for bullies to slyly cover their own behinds and lessen the chances of being exposed. As long as the victim looks like the enemy, then others will look no further than that victim.
If this is something that you’re dealing with now, know that this is only part of the illusion that bullies create to build their case against you and to silence you. It’s nothing more than a magic trick and it doesn’t mean that you are what they say you are. You are NOT how bullies make you look!
You are awesome in your own right and there will come a day when you will have genuine and loving friends, who love you only for being you. You are worth fighting for and you are worth living for! Don’t give up on yourself!
For those whom don’t know, the last six years of school was Hell on Earth for me, as it is for so many children and teens today. Each time I hear on the news about a young man/lady who has committed suicide because of bullying, it breaks my heart because I know all too well of the intense and unbearable pain this child went through.
The feeling of entrapment and being held hostage by your classmates for eight long hours, the pain so intense you can’t even cry, the having your reputation unjustly ruined, the desperately holding on to your dignity with everything you have in you, the intent of your classmates to destroy what little happiness you do manage to scrounge for yourself, the paralyzing fear that washes over you every morning upon seeing the school bus approach, the horrible names, the brutal beatings, the having your cries for help ignored by those in authority, or worse, blamed for your own suffering…all of this for none other than being who you are and committing the sin of simply EXISTING…yes! I’ve been there and it’s a tormenting pain that only few can comprehend!
Each taunt, each dig, each attack, cuts a little deeper and a little deeper as time passes, until the cumulative pain is almost physical!
I’d had the idea to write this book for as far back as the eighth grade. During that time, because no one listened when I attempted to report the bullying or needed to talk, I turned to the only outlet that was available to me- keeping a daily journal and writing down every bullying incident I suffered at school in detail. It was the only thing I could do to get it out!
I remember the day when a nosy classmate found one of my journals and she wasted no time reading it and then passing it around to others! As a result, I got a heck of a reprisal when I was beat up on the way home on the bus for what I’d written! On another occasion, I was caught with my journal by a teacher and the principal was called after another classmate brought it to the teacher’s attention. The teacher then handed my journal to the principal and I watched as he scanned the little red notebook that was my journal, gave me a very dirty look, then walked out of the classroom, flipping the pages. Needless to say, it was the last time I ever saw that journal. However, I was sure to keep a copy of everything in a separate notebook at home. Therefore, I didn’t lose any valuable information. Yes, I did a mountain of writing back then!
There were other reasons for journaling as well, one of which was to gather evidence for possible future litigation should they hurt me bad enough to send me to the hospital, or worse! I journaled all through the last five years of school, then kept the notes put away for years because I knew that one day, I’d write a book and tell my story!
During the second half of the nineties, I began researching bullying online and I was amazed when everything I read was a dead-ringer of what I experienced! That’s when I knew that it never was “all in my head”! This, in itself, was such sweet relief! I continued to research bullying, reading articles and books online and off anything I could get my hands on! I researched the tactics bullies use against their victims, profiles of both bully and victim, true stories of how teachers and school officials mostly sweep incidences of bullying under the rug and blame the victim. I read almost everything there was to know about bullying and the dynamics of the human predator/prey and I was totally amazed at how everything clicked and fit together like a perfect little puzzle…I then had no doubt that I wasn’t “crazy”!
About ten years ago, I began to hear on the news about school bullying and as time went on, I saw more and more stories of kids being victimized pop up on the news with increasing frequency! Then stories of child and teen suicides began to surface and that’s when I knew that it was time to tell my story. So I dug out my old journals and carefully wove them into the book as I wrote it, being sure to keep them in chronological order.
I wrote the book for many reasons: 1. To tell my story and how I survived. 2. To record what I learned from being bullied. 3. To admit my becoming a bully myself in order to protect myself and express the remorse I felt later for it. 4. To give today’s victims hope that it does, indeed, get better. 5. To assure bullied victims that despite what their bullies may say to them, they still have value and are worthy of love and friendship. 6. To be a living testimony to these children and teens that, as bleak as the present may be, the future can be so much better and they can be “normal” again. 7. To discourage suicide and ultimately, help bring down the suicide rate among these precious youngsters.
My goal is to be a voice for these kids, whom have had their voices stolen from them and give them ways to protect and re-empower themselves, boost confidence and find reasons to go on living! This is my passion and my joy! If I can reach out and make a difference in the life of one…just ONE bullied young person, then the torment I went through years ago was not in vain!
Bullying doesn’t only happen to school-aged children and teens and you don’t have to be a member of any certain age group to fall victim to it, nor to be a bully. Bullying can happen at any age, from the very young to the very old. There is school bullying, but there’s also Workplace bullying and yes, even bullying among senior citizens. And as statistics show, those whom are bullied in school are most likely to become bullied adults.
But while this is certainly true, it doesn’t mean that all victims of school bullying are destined to be bullied their entire lives. I’m living proof!
Here’s how I ceased to be a victim:
1. I began giving to others the very thing I was denied during junior high and high school- respect, validation and love. I learned that people…all people, have an innate desire to feel valued, important, respected and loved. Dale Carnegie was dead on when he stressed in his book, “How to Win Friends and Influence People”, the importance of making the other person feel good about themselves.
2. It took the realization that my bullies were actually just as scared as I was, if not more more so. It makes sense that they were more afraid than I was because they had so much more to lose than I did. Why else did my school bullies continuously strain themselves just to be someone that they clearly weren’t? Why else would they go out of their own way to keep up the charades and fake personas, which helped them attain their popularity…the consistent posturing, the beating of their own chests in hopes of looking tough, the false bravado, the constant showboating, and the having to lie and put on the act of having more than they did, when in reality, they didn’t have as much as a bucket to pee in? Bullies are pretty much the same and work very hard to keep up the fake alter-ego which generously rewards them a spot in the who’s who section of the yearbook. And sadly, most of my former classmates are the same today…trying to keep up with the Jones’ and covertly trying to convince the rest of the world that they’re better than most.
When I finally came to this epiphany, I was no longer afraid of not only my classmates, but any bully. Any dig, any taunt, any insult they threw at me, did not bother me but only slid in my right ear and out my left, rolling so smoothly down my back that it lost the effect it once had. Today, it’s easier not to acknowledge anything that comes out of their crooked little mouths because not only do I know the secrets they and every bully tries to hide.
3. I’m okay with myself and the people around me. I love and accept myself and I know who I am, what I want and know where my boundaries lie. I realize that it’s perfectly okay to say “no” and to refuse to be treated with negativity. I know that I need no one’s permission to be myself, to be safe and to be happy. And lastly, I waste no time, if need be, kicking toxic people out of my life when their toxicity begins to effect me or those I care about and I can do it without a modicum of guilt.
It took a while to get to this place…this place of peace, love and self-acceptance where everyone I meet accepts and loves me. However, I’m here and I want you to know that, if you’re a victim of bullying…if you struggle to make friends and keep them, if your reputation has been tarnished, know that it doesn’t have to be this way forever! You can’t turn it around to your benefit! Like me, you too can go from being a social outcast to being a social butterfly. Don’t you dare give up!
It’s so true. High school really is child’s play…the kiddie pool of life, if you will. And most often, graduation means the end of the line for most “popular” bullies and cliquies. I say this because most of my former school bullies had their fame in school but are doing very little with their lives today. Most achieve very little as adults, while those like me, who were horribly bullied by these types, evolve into awesome and highly successful adults.
I know this for a fact because I’ve watched as one of my older school bullies got a Nursing degree, got hooked on prescription pills, was caught stealing out of the medicine cart, lost her nursing license and ended up working in a local cafe for minimum wage. Now she can’t work at all due to health issues. Don’t get me wrong, I don’t secretly wish for anything bad to happen to anyone and I don’t glory in the misfortunes of others…not even those who tormented me in school. However, I’m simply making the point that Karma does repay eventually and most of these coddled and babied daddy’s girls and puffed up pretty boys get a huge letdown once they’re out on their own. I came to find out that this has happened to many of my former bullies. They bully innocent others like myself during school, then get the comeuppance they never expected as adults.
Here are a few reasons why most of my ex-bullies aren’t very successful:
In order to be truly successful, a person must leave their comfort zones and face their worst fear…the possibility of failure and most bullies will never leave their comfort zones. They’d rather stay in an environment where they continue to get stuff and opportunities handed to them by their “town connections”, which, by the way, are only small to mediocre victories! Most of my bullies never left the one-horse town I was bullied in after high school. Why? Because they knew they wouldn’t get the special treatment and free passes in any other jurisdiction that were generously afforded them in *Oakley. Therefore, they stay where their friends are and where they know that they can get by on nepotism and the “Good Ole Boy System” which rules not only *Oakley, but most tiny Southern towns.
However, here’s the thing about small towns and rural areas- it doesn’t take long, nor does it take much effort for anyone…ANYONE to maximize their potential in places such as these…bullies and cliquies included…because a person can only go so far in a rural area. So, I say, let them have their small town safety net because they’re only “playing in the kiddie pool”! They would drown in the “big pool”.
High school is, literally, the highlight of most bullies’ lives and bullies today should enjoy it while they can, because the real world doesn’t care who you were in high school, how popular or unpopular you were, whether or not you were Homecoming Queen/King, the captain of the varsity team, on the cheerleading squad,in a fraternity/sorority or that you were the class president! All the world wants to know is whether or not you can contribute something to it and most bullies, although trying like the Dickens to cover it up, are about as weak, cowardly and incompetent as a person can get and couldn’t contribute anything but negativity!
Many of the differences in me, which were ridiculed by my classmates are the same characteristics and skills that people today, outside of my former high school class, value and admire about me! (Forgive me a very satisfied chuckle)WHAM! Take that, bullies!
Most of my former bullies live very unsatisfying lives (Working dead-end jobs they hate and for a pittance, have spouses and partners who abuse them and/or cheat on them every chance they get, incarcerated/in trouble with the law or addicted to some type of controlled substance). They’re very sad, lonely, dissatisfied and bitter forty-somethings because for them, life didn’t turn out like they’d thought it would! Which is the reason why the majority of them still bully others…much worse than they ever did in school.
If you are currently a victim of bullying, I want you to know that justice for them and for you is coming! Don’t commit suicide! Please! Instead, stick around! Because eventually, you will see just how these cowards end up! They may be having the cool time of their lives now, but I can guarantee that it won’t last and the same will be your victimization by them…it won’t last! Take heart that you and your bullies just might end up trading places one day!
High school is the kiddie pool. The adult world is the big pool! Let them have the kiddie pool and let them be the kings and queens of that kiddie pool…while I would rather go to and rule the big pool! Wouldn’t you?
*not the name of the town
With yesterday being the anniversary of 9/11, I can’t help but look back on the last sixteen years since. My heart has ached not only for the lives lost on that fateful day, but also for the loved ones left behind.
I also mourn the loss of the America that I grew up in…the America that my Daddy served and took great pride in…an America whose people once felt secure and free in…an America whose schools always began the day with the Pledge of Allegiance and The Lord’s Prayer…an America without some of the ridiculous laws of today…an America whose people were never afraid to tell it like it is or call it what it is…an America that was not afraid to profess its faith in God.
When I watched the Twin Towers burning on my television screen that morning, I knew that this country would never again be the same and that life as we knew it was forever changed.
I remember well the images on the news as does everyone else. I recall the towers burning and falling, I remember the streets being covered with ash, plane parts, concrete and papers.
But the image that haunts me the most is of people plummeting 100 stories to their deaths to escape the intense heat of burning jet fuel.
For the life of me, I cannot comprehend the terror that went through their minds as they plunged to the hard asphalt below. I cannot imagine the gut-wrenching feeling of knowing that I am inevitably about to die and having to choose which way to go, with the alternative being so horrible that I would have to jump from so high up.
I hope and pray that no one will ever again be put in a situation to where they would have to make a horrible and soul-shaking decision such as that. Ever! I also hope and pray that one day, we the people can rise up and take back not only the values and morals of yesterday, but also the freer, happier and more care-free America of yesterday.
In God We Trust
God bless the USA
You know by now I’m passionate about the epidemic of bullying and suicide among children and teenagers because I faced the same thing in my youth. I felt the crushing weight of bullying, and the desperate and dark thoughts that seemed my only way to escape it. But there is yet another reason why I devote so much of my time and effort and spirit to this plague on our society.
I was widowed by suicide. Michael was my husband. He died in October of 2011 of a self-inflicted gunshot to the head. Even worse, I was the first to find him.
I was the unfortunate soul who found my husband’s lifeless body sitting in his vehicle after he put a .357 magnum to the roof of his mouth and pulled the trigger. It’s both a sight you never want to see and something you never forget, an image that will forever remain seared in my memory and that I will surely carry to my grave.
Any time I listen to the news and hear of a suicide, especially when it’s someone young, someone whose life has yet to begin, it breaks my heart in two. I think about the lost future of that person and I ask myself, “Could they have overcome whatever was dragging them down? Could the lost have gone to college? Could they have become a doctor, writer or teacher? Could they have been the one person, who could have changed the world for the better?”
And it makes me sad because, yes, I believe that they could have.
I also think of the person’s family and how devastated they must be over the untimely death of their loved-one. I know firsthand how that feels—it’s the worst kind of heartache. The pain is gut-level, like being kicked in the stomach, while it leaves our head spinning with questions that will never be answered as your struggle to figure out why only drives you into a spiral of confusion and “what-ifs”.
I want you to know that if you commit suicide, someone who loves you will come looking for you. And when they find you, their whole world will be turned upside down and forever changed.
I know what suicide looks like. As terrible as it would be to find a total stranger that way, when it’s someone you know and love…It’s horrible and grotesque, something no one who hasn’t experienced it can imagine or comprehend unless you’re unfortunate enough to see it yourself. It’s always the surviving loved ones, who are left to pick up the pieces.
This is something that I would never wish upon anyone, not even my worst enemy.
No matter what you may be going through, you need to know that the suffering will not last forever. Better days are ahead, and if you stick it out, you will emerge stronger, happier, and more victorious than ever before—when things seem to be at their worst, your breakthrough is just around the corner.
You will see the sun again! Don’t give up! Don’t quit! Don’t cheat yourself out of what will more than likely be an awesome future! You have so much to look forward to, you just don’t know it yet. Your best days are ahead of you. If this anything you’ve considered, I beg you, please don’t do it, and find help to get you through.
So, very sincerely, I wish you all a wonderful day.