1 Reason Having Enemies Is Better Than Having Frenemies

Targets often pick “friends” who only tolerate them or those who wish them ill will because they’re often lonely and desperate. For so long, they have been wrongly alienated from others due to rumors and lies that bullies have spread about them to keep them from making friends.

Because the target is so hungry for a connection…any connection, he/she will befriend anyone…and I mean anyone! They are not selective with who they call “friend” and end up latching on to people who are not even worth knowing…predators, who only take advantage.

Also, young victims often assume that to be “cool,” they have to have a big circle of friends. This is not true.

With that being said, I want you to know that if you are a victim of bullying, you do not need a whole slew of people in your life to be happy nor to feel like or be a whole person. You only need your family and a few true friends. It’s safer this way. Wouldn’t you much rather have just a handful of true friends than to have an abundance of frenemies? I know I would.

In fact, you should prefer to have enemies over ‘frenemies’. Here’s why:

1. With an enemy, you know exactly where they stand without having to do any guesswork. However, you will always be the last to know with frenemies after being played for a sucker.

In other words, enemies won’t hide their contempt for you. Frenemies, on the other hand, will always hide their contempt for you behind the facade of friendship. And they do this to keep you close so they can find out your deepest secrets, your dreams, your goals, and your not-so-attractive characteristics.

And once they know all these intimate details about you, they will then weaponize it and use it against you.

If at any time you wonder about a person…if your intuition is telling you that something is “off,” put some distance between yourself and that individual and do it fast! Instinct is trying to warn you.

If your so-called friends are only tolerating you, stabbing you in the back, or sabotaging you in any way, it’s time to eighty-six of these leaches to your self-esteem. And the sooner you do, the better!

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Targets, Here Are 9 Better Alternatives to Seeking Revenge.

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.

PTSD

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, youll 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!

With knowledge comes empowerment!

Reasons Bullies Deliberately Put You on The Defense

That’s right. And bullies will do it purposefully and for a reason. They put you on the defense to make you look “defensive” because they know that defensiveness makes a person look guilty.  I’ll give you a few scenarios:

Scenario 1.

You’re a target, and the bullies go around telling others that you’re going to start a fight sooner or later. They also claim to know how you’re going to provoke the brawl and talk about that possibility as well. Even stranger is that these bullies are so confident in saying these things. They’re so sure that what they say is going to happen. It gets back to you, and you can’t understand why they’re making such outrageous and unknowable predictions.

But understand that this shouldn’t sound so strange and shouldn’t be so bewildering to you. No. What it should be is a WARNING to you! Allow me to continue.

Sure enough, one of the bullies slyly baits you and provokes you to fight back in self-defense. When you’re lured into a fight and call it out as it happened, everyone else sees you as too defensive. The bullies then stand back, snicker, and say,

“’ See? What did we tell you? We told you he/she was going to start a fight! And he/she did! We tried to warn you! And now, he/she just revealed how he did in attempting to turn it back on us!”

People then blame you for it and accuse you of being one who won’t take responsibility.

Let me elaborate:

Any time the bullies make such predictions should serve as a warning to you. It should warn you that something is going on behind the scenes.

It should tell you that what is really happening here is that the bullies are the ones plotting to provoke you into a physical altercation. Yes! You read this correctly! While the bullies are making such wild predictions about you, they’re setting everything up to happen exactly how they’re predicting so they can turn around and say, “See? We told you so! If so and so wasn’t guilty, he/she wouldn’t be denying and explaining it so vehemently!

And the more you plead your innocence and tell the truth that it was the bullies who provoked you, the more they and everyone else scream that you started the fight and that you’re only trying to avoid responsibility. Thus, the guiltier you look.

It shouldn’t be this easy, but it is!

Realize that this kind of deception is so easy to pull off, it shouldn’t work! But it does!

That’s why it pays to recognize when bullies unknowingly give themselves away and to take steps to thwart them somehow. And the best way is to call it out in front of an audience. Or better, you could say this,

“With that statement, you just busted yourselves, and you’re too stupid to realize it.”

And say it without elaborating on it any further. Because you’ll shock the crap out of your bullies and make them wonder how it is that you think they busted themselves. They may even ask you about it, but you don’t have to tell them. You can just smile and say, “I just do,” and keep walking. That reaction alone will throw your bullies off balance and make them a little sweaty!

But do this only if the bullies aren’t your bosses or any member of an authority, of course. In these cases, it’s best to keep your thoughts to yourself and start making an escape plan to get away from these psychos.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

You Can Learn a Lot from a Bully: 10 Life Lessons Learned for Being a Target of Bullying

You would be amazed at what you can learn from bullies. This may sound a bit strange to some, but bullies can teach us so much about human nature and the evils of the world. Although they can hurt us, they can also teach us some of the most powerful lessons.

Here’s what bullies and bullying taught me.

1. That everyone, including the bully, has problems. Bullies always put on a front of having a perfect life. They use arrogance and cockiness to mask their feelings of hurt, insecurity, and inferiority. Many of my bullies had alcoholic fathers, drug-addicted mothers, fathers who cheated on or beat their mothers, or single mothers who had a different man in her bed every night. Many had parents who neglected or abused them, and others had an older sibling who bullied them. Several had a parent dealing drugs, a parent in and out of jail, or were sexually abused. So, is it any wonder most of my classmates were so full of pee and vinegar?

2. How to spot a liar or fake. If you’ve dealt with bullies and bullying long enough, you learn very quickly how to spot liars and fakes before you even talk to them. And you learn it because your survival depends on it.

3. To grow a thick skin. Have you ever noticed how redundant bullies are? Have you noticed how they repeat the same stupid insults, taunts, and negative statements over and over again? It’s true that the crap they talk can hurt and hurt badly. However, they can repeat the same rubbish so much and for so long that, after a while, it loses its effectiveness and potency. Then it just gets boring and your bullies can become one big yawn.

4. Empathy and compassion for others. When you know what it is to be a target of bullying and alone. It teaches you empathy and compassion for others- especially the underdog who is downtrodden. You’ll more likely reach out and protect those who are bullied because you were there, and you can’t stand the thought of anyone else enduring such pain.

5. The evils humans are capable of and their predatory nature. Having been a target of bullying will teach you this if nothing else! Anytime you’re a target of bullying, you can end up seeing the darkest side of humanity possible if you’re unlucky enough- things that people who aren’t targets would never see. And they will be things you won’t forget.

6. To never take anyone for granted. I’m no longer a victim of bullying and I have such an awesome family and the most positive and fun circle of friends you’d ever want to meet. But because I know what it is to be a target of bullying and to be excluded and isolated, I don’t take my familial relationships or friendships for granted. I make it a point to be loyal to all of them and to stand behind them when the chips are down. I consider my family, blood, and non-blood, wonderful blessings to my life and I cherish all of them.

7. To appreciate the people in your life. Again, I value all my family and closest friends and I appreciate the qualities they bring to my life. Words cannot express how blessed I am to know them and to have them in my life.

8. To take care of, value, and love yourself. I learned the hard way that if you don’t love yourself, no one else will either. I make it a point to take care of myself and to treat myself kindly. How do I treat myself kindly, you may ask? By how I allow others to treat me. By what I tolerate and the people I let in my life, and by not being afraid to walk away if a person doesn’t treat me well.

9. That’s it’s okay, and in your best interests, to say, “no.” If something (or someone) doesn’t feel right to me, I no longer hesitate to say “no” and I do it guilt-free. I now know that saying “no” is saying “yes” to my rights and my dignity and that’s the best feeling ever!

10. To stand up for the underdog. Because you know what it’s like to be mistreated, you wouldn’t want to see anyone else endure what you have. So, you take the opportunity to be someone’s hero and friend for life. This is one of the greatest lessons bullying can teach you.

Being the object of bullies is never fun. But if you look for the lessons in it, it can teach you so much about the crazy world we live in, about the dark side of human nature, and that it’s of the utmost importance that you keep the faith, believe in yourself, love yourself enough to take care of yourself, appreciate the people who love you, and stand up for the people who aren’t able to defend themselves.

Know that you have the power to turn the abuse you suffer around for good and to turn the negatives into positives. Your pain can become your power! I guarantee it!

Believe It or Not, You Have the Power to Choose Whether to Accept or Reject the Labels

 

If you’re a target of bullying, I want you to know that you have more power than you realize. You have a choice- a choice of whether to accept or reject your bullies’ labels and definitions of you.

I want to drum into your head this single truth: You have nothing to prove to anyone but yourself!

Bullying hurts, no doubt about it. And you may have to suffer the pain of not being accepted. However, if you have the inner strength to reject the insults and name-calling, you’re already ahead of the game and least likely to be controlled by your bullies.

Understand that when bullies take it upon themselves to define you, what they’re doing is playing God because they’re claiming to know the unknowable. All they’re doing is pretending to know you better than you know yourself. The underlying message of the bullies is that they can read your mind and that they know your inner reality, when, in truth, no one knows that information but you and you alone.

Realize that when bullies define you, they purposely try to create a role of their own making in which to cast you. I can remember several roles my bullies handpicked for me and there were four of them.

  1. Crazy/mentally imbalanced
  2. A promiscuous whore
  3. An arrogant and uppity snob
  4. A lying, manipulative con-artist

Bullies desire to create your reality for you. But the truth is that they don’t have the power to do it. Only you possess that power. They may make you think they have that power, but they don’t and never will. They’re only fantasizing and creating a world of make-believe without realizing it. And the reason they do this is to wrest control and domination over you.

I want you to realize that no one can have power over you unless you give it to them.

  1. They cannot tell you what to do, say, feel, or believe.
  2. They cannot know your motivations and intentions unless you speak them aloud.
  3. They cannot know your wants, needs, and thoughts.

Those things are impossible for them because they’re not you!

When bullies attempt any of these “impossibles,” they may say things like:

  1. “You’re only trying to get attention.”
  2. “You’re just trying to make trouble.”
  3. “You’re just lying to keep from getting hurt.”
  4. “You’re only covering your ass.”
  5. “You’re just trying to kiss up and score brownie points.”
  6. “You’re only trying to get on everyone’s good side.”
  7. “You’re just jealous because no one likes you.”

Understand that when they tell you things like these, they are second guessing you and your feelings, thoughts, motives, and intentions. Again, they’re playing God because they are claiming to know your inner world, which is impossible for anyone who isn’t you to know. And they’re doing it to intimidate, control, and dominate you.

I’ll say again.

You choose whether to accept or reject this nonsense! Know that the only person who can truly define you is you. You are the sole owner of your self-definition.

And you don’t have to explain that power or prove it. It’s there. Remember my friend’s quote I cited in one of my earlier posts a few months back:

“To be insulted by you, I must first value your opinion.”

– T-Ronn Hicks –

If you don’t value your bullies’ opinions, or, in this case, their definitions of you, then you’ll choose to reject them and they’ll have no power nor control over how you feel about yourself, nor over your emotions. And you’ll be able to take the wind out of their sails!

So, roll your eyes and blow your bullies off with disdain and a scoff. And if the bully happens to be your boss, do it in your mind (LOL) because your thoughts are free. Make fun of their ridiculous definitions because they only show just how delusional they are. You can even walk off twirling your finger next to your temple.

And before long, they just might get bored, go away, and leave you alone.

With knowledge comes empowerment!

7 Steps to Having Confidence When Others Bully You

There are things you can do to take the sting out of being bullied. These steps can serve as a buffer to the effects of bullying on self-esteem and the psyche.

1. Watch and Listen– Because bullies get talked about too. Believe me when I tell you. Bullies have enemies and lots of them. And why not?

They’ve been walking over people for a long time. So, you can bet they’ve left a long trail of foes behind them, adversaries who are more than happy to dish out the tea.

2. Know that you aren’t the only one these people have bullied– seasoned bullies have had plenty of practice over the years. I guarantee it! There have been others before you, and there will be more after you. Why do you think these people are so good at making you feel bad about yourself and doubt your worth? How do you think they got that good at it? They certainly didn’t get that way overnight. It came from so many years of trial and error, and they figured out what worked and what didn’t. And they had to have had guinea pigs (previous victims/targets) as practice. They’re doing what for so long has worked for them.

3. Collect info on your bullies– find out about their personal and family lives. You can bet that bullies have problems too. Otherwise, they wouldn’t be going out of their way to prove something to an audience at your expense. As I stated earlier, they have enemies. Find these enemies, cozy up to them, and have them tell you what they know about your bullies. I have done it many times, and I can tell you that you’d be surprised at the tidbits you found out! I’ll give you more details on the next step.

4. Ingratiate yourself with others your bullies have bullied– You and these people have something in common, so this should be a cinch! Align yourself with these other victims. Bullies run in packs, so why can’t targets? Understand that strength always comes in numbers. If you ban together, I guarantee that your bullies will think twice before accosting you. Remember that bullies are cowards and would prefer to catch you when you’re alone rather than confront you while you’re in a group.

I love being me – positive affirmation – handwriting on napkin with a cup of coffee

5. Keep company only with people who love you, want the best for you, and make you feel good about yourself– A good sign of a true friend is someone who uplifts you and helps your confidence soar. They uplift you, encourage you, have your back when you’re in trouble, and cheer for you when you reach success. All too often, victims end up with fake friends- frenemies who only tolerate and are passive-aggressive toward them. These frenemies will subtly humiliate victims in public and throw them under the bus when they’re in trouble or danger.

Victims often latch on to frenemies because they’re desperate for friends and companionship. They’d rather have sorry excuses for friends who treat them poorly than to have no friends at all. These victims are under the false belief that anything is better than being by yourself. I made that mistake myself when I suffered bullying in school.

Trust me when I tell you, anyone who belittles you even a little bit is not your friend! They’re only there because they know that you’re lonely. You are vulnerable to them, and they only hang around because anytime you have a weak spot, you’re accessible for them to use and take advantage of you. That is the only reason they come around!

Do you want friends like that? I hope not! I hope that you will do what I finally did the last year of school, ditch those creeps, and find friends who respect you, who genuinely like you and want to be with you!

6. Show off your talents and gifts– If you can sign, enter talent shows! If you can write, enter writing contests! If you know you’re good at something, find ways to show it off! You’d be surprised at what it will do for your self-esteem. I promise you!

When my classmates bullied me, it was so bad that I was scared to show what I could do. I knew that I could sing but was too afraid to belt it out and show off my best voice. If there were do-overs, I would have sung as best I could, came out of my shell, and took every opportunity to showcase that talent! Who knows where it might have taken me?

Anytime people are bullying you, you must take care of yourself. We exercise and eat well to take good care of our bodies, but we forget. We must also take care of our psyches! It is imperative that we also take care of our minds. And we do this by taking steps to buffer our self-esteem from the onslaught of bullying.

7. Do things you enjoy doing, and that fills your soul– whether you love to swim, hike, camp, find opportunities to do these things if they truly make you happy! The more happy moments you have, the less of an effect bullying will have on you!

Doing these things will help to buffer your self-esteem against your bullies attacks. In other words, it will lesson the pain of the attacks because you’ll know you have friends, allies, talents, and positive moments in life- solid proof that counters anything the bullies try to tell you. And you’ll feel much better about yourself.

It will also help correct the imbalance between adversity and success. Many targets of bullying often have a ton of social failures and only a tiny few successes. If you do all these things, you’ll soon achieve a healthy balance between the two.

Reaching Your Full Potential

bullying faith hope

One of the greatest victories against bullies is reaching your full potential. Here are ways you can do it!

1. Don’t worry about what other people think. In life, there will be those who will try to tear you down, especially if they know you’re striving to reach a goal. But you don’t mind because they don’t matter. Don’t let them discourage you. No matter what they say, keep shooting for the stars. And don’t stop until you reach your dreams.

2. Weed out all the Negative Nancies and Debbie Downers. Yes! Get rid of all the gossips, whiners, complainers, bullies, and all the people who make you feel bad and suck the oxygen out of you. Surround yourself with positive and uplifting people- people who help you, not those who hinder you.

positive hope never give up don't quit

3. Never be afraid to be alone. Trust me; you’d rather be by yourself than keep company with people who are negative and drain the lifeblood out of you. Negative people are exhausting, and you will need all your energy stores to reach your highest potential. And if you have a partner who doesn’t treat you right nor appreciates the value you bring to a relationship, then perhaps it’s time to re-evaluate the partnership, get clear on the kind of partner you want in your life and give this person their walking papers.

4. Don’t quit. Don’t give up when it seems like progress isn’t happening fast enough or when the going gets rough. Keep plugging at it! Because sometimes, things are their toughest just before you finally get your breakthrough.

5. Believe in yourself. To succeed at anything, you must believe in yourself. If you don’t, no one else will, and you won’t accomplish anything. Without faith in yourself and your abilities, you won’t have the morale to keep working toward your dreams. If you need to rest, then do so. But whatever you do, don’t quit!

You will have to do all of these before you ever find your confidence and reach peace and happiness. It won’t be easy but I promise. It’ll be worth it in the end!

The Silent Treatment and How You Should Handle It

Nope refuse

It’s not what you say; it’s what you don’t say. When bullies wish to harm someone, the silent treatment can the most effective way of doing so. It is a cruel and sneaky way of control.

Remember that bullies are cowards, and they will find the most effective and least noticeable ways to dig at you
.
Here are the reasons bullies use this tactic:

1. It’s least noticeable by others. It leaves no bruises, cuts or scratches, so there’s no physical evidence. This type of bullying is also hard to prove because it’s not easily seen. Therefore, it isn’t wise to report this type of bullying. Because people may see the target as overly sensitive, paranoid, or mentally unbalanced.

ignore

2. It’s the most effective. Understand that the silent treatment is emotional manipulation. So, you must see it as just that. When you’re able to see it for what it is, the least likely you are to be affected by it. Bullies know that it’s the most covert way to assert control over their targets and make them doubt themselves.

3. For control, dominance, and intimidation– Again, bullies use this dirty trick to control how you feel and to dominate you. People also use the silent treatment to intimidate.

4. To manipulate you into doing what they want you to do– Everyone has a desire for approval. However, if being accepted means they force you to do something you don’t want to do, then you’re more than likely spinning your wheels for nothing. Anyone who doesn’t respect your boundaries and wishes will never accept you anyway because a person who truly approves of you would respect your rights and freedom to choose.

toxic

5. To make you feel guilty– Again. Because you didn’t do or give the bullies what they want, they intend to make you feel as if you did something wrong. You didn’t!

You must realize that if you let it get to you, it will only encourage the bullies to keep doing it anytime you don’t cave in and do their bidding or give them what they want.

So, how can you respond to this type of bullying?

Here’s how:

1. See the silent treatment for what it is: emotional manipulation When you finally recognize it as it is, the least you’ll be bothered by it.

2. Mirror the bullies by returning the silent treatment. When you give it right back to them, you’re not allowing them to control and intimidate you. You’re preserving some sense of power over your life by not allowing the bullies to phase you.

bye goodbye

3. Cut those childish buffoons out of your life. Do it either entirely or have as little to do with them as humanly possible. You don’t need to be around these confidence thieves. Realize that you don’t have to put up with that.

4. Stay calm. Don’t get emotional. Exhibit self-control and don’t get sucked into the bullies’ mind games.

5. Call them out. Tell them, “Look. What you’re doing is called the silent treatment, and that’s not okay. You can’t possibly keep up this childish behavior forever, and it’s not going to work.

6. Enjoy the peace and quiet. There’s a bright side to this. At least the bullies aren’t in your face for the time being. You get a reprieve from hearing them bitch and pitch their hissy fits! Woohoo! Who doesn’t love that!

Word of warning though. Make sure you don’t give your bullies clues that you’re enjoying the peace a little too much. Otherwise, they’ll be back on your tail before you can say, “oops.”

Do all the above, and the bullies might leave you alone and move on to an easier target.

You’ll feel much better about yourself knowing you stood up to them and asserted your rights not to be manipulated.

Having and Setting Boundaries is a Must!

Girl sitting on the ground and drawing personal space. Selective focus

You must have the courage to love yourself, even when it angers the people around you. That means setting boundaries, being clear on what you will and will not tolerate.

During grade 6, my first year at Oakley* Schools, I lacked boundaries because I didn’t know how to enforce them. Without those limits, I gave away my friendship, time, energy, and power to people who never deserved it and left nothing for myself. I was bending over backward to please others, treading lightly, being careful not to rock the boat, and make other people angry.

I had been conditioned to think that I wasn’t enough, and I should be anything other than myself. And I thought that being friendly, being accommodating, and being available would win me love and friendship.

boundaries no refuse stop

It didn’t. It got me the exact opposite- walked over, bullied, and mistaken for a fool because the people I was overly friendly to never extended the same to me in return. Without meaning to, I gave the impression that I was desperate to fit in.

A year or so later, during the seventh grade, I began setting boundaries because I was tired of being a doormat. However, first impressions are powerful and it was too late. The power dynamic and others’ expectations of me had already been set. What I should’ve done was drew the line from day one.

In junior high, although my boundaries were clear, many others violated them every chance they got for no other reason than to demonstrate their power and show who was boss. Anytime I said ‘no’ to any of my classmates at school, I would face retaliation of some kind- guilt trips, threats, or physical beatings because they had grown too used to me being a pushover.

They were afraid that if I developed a spine, the benefits they were getting at my expense would stop. Therefore, the retaliation was their way of reinforcing their power and dominance and keeping me subdued.

But now that we’re all adults, let any of them try that today, and they will be very disappointed. Back then, I often wondered why nothing ever seemed to work out.

Understand that timing is everything. Also realize that you already have power but for it to work, you must know how to use it and you must stand up for yourself the very first time bullies come for you. Otherwise, your place in the pecking order will become iron clad and once that happens, you might as well not have any power at all.

I didn’t realize it then, but during those early years in Oakley*, I was going about it all wrong. ‘You see? You must put yourself and your needs first. Never lower your standards or your boundaries! It’s okay to be kind, but never be nice!

say no saying no boundaries stop

The difference between being kind and being nice is that kindness is genuine. People are kind because it’s the right thing to do, not because it can win friendships or favors. Also, kind people never give at their own expense.

Nice people, on the other hand, want friendship and approval. Also, people who are nice give at their own peril and stick their neck out for others to step on, thinking others will come around when they realize how much they care. “Nicies” are under the impression that the more you suffer, the more it shows you care. Um- Wrong!

It gives the impression that you’re a pushover, a kiss butt, a boot-licker! Being nice never awards you any respect because there’s usually an ulterior motive and the reason for your niceness is to avoid conflict!

Being kind, on the other hand, is genuine and others can sense the genuineness. Being kind is much more respectful. Being ‘nice’ is for wimps.

Nope refuse

Understand that anytime you set boundaries, there will always be those who will hate you for it and retaliate. And they will fight you for a while to wear you down. That’s what bullies do!

However, stick to your guns. Keep fighting for your right to be treated with respect. Show them that you will stand up to them no matter what they do, and eventually, they’ll get tired and realize that you aren’t worth the effort. They’ll go find an easier target.

So, always set limits and be prepared to fight to protect them. Be kind, yes! But if people start taking your kindness for being a fool and treating you like crap, don’t be afraid to tell these people to kiss off!

Being kind to others means being kind to yourself first.

*Not the real name of the town

Here’s Why Bullies Attack Your Reputation

reputation

“Reputation is the cornerstone of power.” – Robert Greene

Simply put, bullies attack your reputation to strip you of power. Once your reputation is gone, you’re defenseless and extremely vulnerable to attack. Bullies can freely attack you from all directions. Even worse, you’re at the mercy of virtually everyone around you.

Bullies know that if they can poke holes in your reputation, they won’t have to work so hard to bring you down because now, they have public opinion on their side. They can then stand back and watch with glee as widely held perceptions of you finish you off.

To start, bullies will plant seeds of doubt about your character in the minds of others. Doubt is a powerful tool.

Next, they spread rumors and lies.

gossip rumors defamation

Bullies are proof that offense is the best defense. Drawing first blood is always best because the target can only respond in either one of two ways.

1. He could deny the rumors, even produce evidence that proves his innocence of the accusations. Or,

2. He could ignore the lies and blow his accusers off with a “whatever” and walk away laughing.

But!

Either way, people will still look at the target with suspicion.

1. If the target defends himself and produces evidence to the contrary, the prevailing thought will be,

“There must be some truth to the rumors, otherwise he wouldn’t be defending himself so vehemently.”

gossip

2. If he ignores the lies and waves his accusers away with a laugh, others will be even more suspicious of him because they’ll think that he has something to hide and is only playing it cool.

Bullies know that if they instigate rumors the right way, there’s a possibility that they can get the target so enraged and rattled that while defending himself, he ends up making a truckload of mistakes.

And if the target hasn’t yet established a reputation, the smear campaign will only work all the more in the bullies’ favor.

And the sad fact is this:

Two different people can do the exact same thing the exact same way. And each person’s reputation will decide whether the action is brilliant or terrible.
Put simpler. It’s not what you do. It’s who you are when you do it. It’s not the action itself, but who the person is that does it.

A person who’s well-liked and has a stellar reputation can write an essay, and others will deem it a brilliant piece.

bullying storm damage

But let a person who’s despised by everyone and has a lousy reputation write the exact same essay, and others will only view it as a worthless piece of garbage that’s not even worth reading, which brings me to the final conclusion:

Reputation can affect all areas of your life. It can be the difference between having success or failure- in everything!

But there’s hope.

Although extremely difficult, you can still salvage your reputation and change your life for the better. Here’s how.

1. Move to a different area. Sometimes you must go somewhere else and start over again. It may be difficult to leave your family behind, but if you stay in the town where people judge you unfavorably, you’ll never have the chance to move forward and will always be stuck right where you are. Why not pack your things and leave for greener pastures.

2. Find a good cause to fight for and that you’re passionate about. Any time you fight for a good cause, you will meet like-minded people who are fighting for the same purpose.

The cause could be “The Me Too Movement,” “The Victim’s Rights Movement,” or even “The Anti-Bullying Movement.” Whatever the cause, you will attract those who are fighting for the same things. And you’ll easily make positive connections with them and become life-long friends.

Although many doors get slammed shut and locked, there’s always a way out if you look for it. I guarantee it!

The Thirteenth Takeaway from Being Bullied

positive happiness self love acceptance care put yourself first

When I posted “My 12 Takeaways from Being Bullied” today, perhaps it should’ve been titled with a thirteen instead of a twelve.

Later, another takeaway came to mind that I hadn’t thought of and failed to mention. But before I tell you what it is, allow me to elaborate a little first.

Many of my bullies in school were the most irresponsible and incompetent people I’d ever met. They were spoiled, coddled and babied which caused them to be self-entitled, demanding, arrogant and ignorant. Many of them would get into trouble with the school, juvenile authorities, or the police. And they would do these things repeatedly.

Any time they got themselves in a jam, here come Mom and Dad to the rescue. Their parents would either pull a few strings or pay through the nose to pry little junior’s butt out of the crack he’d gotten it stuck in.

positive gut feel vibes energy instinct

If they made a bad grade, the parents would come to the school and chew the teacher out for giving the grade. Or the kid would cheat their way to a passing grade.

Many of my female bullies would end up pregnant, some repeatedly, and their parents would swoop in to fund their abortions to keep her from bringing shame to the family. What’s even funnier is that some of these kids were those no one ever in a million years thought would end up in such predicaments.

This is not to say that I look down on anyone who goes to jail, who has gotten PG out of wedlock or has had an abortion because we all screw up- and screw up BIG- at some point in life. So, understand that I’m not judging anyone, nor am I expressing any views.

The point to this post is this: They never learned to take responsibility for their own lives. And why would they if they were never made to?

I look back now and realize that it’s no wonder most of these people had the attitudes they had.

With that said, here’s my 13th takeaway:

I learned early on that I was the only person responsible for my own safety, success, and future happiness, no one else! And I had to be willing to do whatever it took to bootstrap my way back up. And it was the same with my other siblings.

There were no freebies nor piggyback rides.

positive motivational

If I screwed up (and I did many times), my parents didn’t bail me out. They stood back, let me fall flat on my tookus, then expected me to pick myself up afterward- all by myself! And they did it to teach me responsibility for my actions.

And when you’re a kid, you don’t realize the tough love and good intentions behind it. You don’t see the eventual payoff. You don’t think about how this will mold you into a much better person and make life much easier for you in the future.

All you’re looking at is the here and now. All you see is what’s in front of your face, which is every other kid getting to do whatever wrong they want and getting a pat on the head and a proverbial get-out-of-jail-free card while you’re having the book thrown at you. And no, it’s not fun. In fact, it downright sucks!

But! Though it may not have felt good nor seemed fair at the time, through it all, I learned independence. I learn self-control. I discovered my own strength and that I was unstoppable!

positive motivational

And if I can go through six long years of brutal bullying and remain standing, then nothing is impossible, and there’s no limit to the heights I can achieve.

The majority of people who are bullied are those who come from families who’ve instilled morals, integrity and the importance of accountability in them. These people are often the brightest, most hard-working, decent, caring, and, most of all, bravest people around.

When you’re bullied, you learn to overcome so many obstacles and move on with life. And you learn by yourself. You learn to fight like the dickens for your safety, well-being, and your happiness. You also learn that if you want anything in life, it’s up to only you to put in the effort to get it.

In closing, I want to thank my bullies for showing me my own strength and for giving me the grit to stay in the fight, to adapt, to overcome, and to win!

Schools Who Retaliate Against Parents for Speaking Out and Protecting Their Children Against Bullying

bullying stops here

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.

bullying physical
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!!!

When A Bully Is Physically Attacking You, Should You Hit Back?

It seems to be the question on everyone’s mind these days, especially in the notoriously politically correct climate in which we live. The media and politicians vehemently discourage fighting violence with violence. You’ll hear statements from others, such as:

“Two wrongs don’t make a right.”
“Turn the other cheek.”
“Don’t stoop to the bully’s level.”
And the all-time favorite,
“Be the bigger person and walk away.”

I’ve heard them all.

self defense

Yes, you should try more peaceful ways first, like walking away from the bully or reporting it to someone in power. However, what if the more peaceful solutions don’t work?

If you don’t stand up for yourself, the bully will only continue to come after you and hurt you. You’ll be a punching bag for everyone who knows you at school or elsewhere. Because when word gets around that one person can hit you and get away with it, everyone else will think they can too and you’ll be the school or the community whipping boy. That’s no way to live.

In the middle of a physical attack, the last resort is the only option you have.

So, here it is:

When a bully physically attacks you, you have a God-given, primal, animal right to defend yourself from being harmed. I state this with full conviction!

If a bully hits you first, haul off and knock his block off! And when you do, don’t just give him a love pat. Deck the creep with the strength of your entire body- hit so hard that the bully has difficulty getting back up. Then unleash a hail of hard licks so that he doesn’t get up. Because once the bully gets up, he will charge you!

Yeah. I know it isn’t the “politically correct” thing to do. But when someone is harming you, all that jazz about political correctness and being the bigger person goes out the window, and the gloves are off.

The only thing you should think of at this point is how to disable the bully so or give him such a bad memory that he’ll never even think about coming for you again. You aren’t a troublemaker or a brute for this, folks! It’s called self-defense!

This doesn’t mean bringing a gun or other deadly weapon. Lethal weapons will only get someone killed, and you put behind bars for the rest of your life. Never EVER carry a gun to school! It’s much better to put up your dukes and throw down when you must.

Bully picking on smaller weaker teenager with very agressive behavior shoving his face into the bus

I’ll say again, punch the bully’s lights out! You may get suspended from school, fired from work, or even go to jail for a night or two. However, physical attacks are much more vicious nowadays and if you just let someone smack you around, they’ll only intensify the beatings until they hurt you bad enough to send you to the hospital or worse! And I’d much rather be suspended, lose a job, or spend a night in jail than to spend a month in the hospital or end up six feet under.

I don’t condone fighting. Although I fought many times in school, I hated it each time I had to. I was a 5’4″, 120-pound girl being jumped and most of the time by multiple assailants, a male attacker, or a female much bigger than me. There were times when I was also boxed in where I couldn’t go anywhere.

There was no other choice. It was either fight or risk my bullies possibly maiming or killing me. Sometimes the last resort is the only way to protect yourself and let a bully know that you’re not the one to mess with and that you aren’t afraid to fight back if necessary.

There will be others who may disagree with this post, and that’s okay. I am very thick-skinned now and rarely do I get offended. I can agree to disagree. But I will do what I have to do to protect my well-being and my life if ever I’m in physical danger.

So, if all else fails, go ahead and whoop that ***!

I’d love to hear your thoughts on the subject!

When You Look Good, You Feel Good: Why You Should Always Take Pride in Your Appearance

When a person is a target of bullies, it’s too easy for that person to stop caring- about everything, including his appearance.

The reason for this is that when someone gets bullied for so long- once enough people have told them so many times over that they are nothing, that they aren’t good enough, that they have no value as a human being, and that they’re a waste of time, space and breathable air, they begin to believe it subconsciously.

They won’t even know it’s happening until it’s too late, and the contrary belief of themselves has already taken a foothold on their psyche. And when they believe something of themselves, whether it be a complete lie or truth, they will unwittingly live up to it.

bully angry girl victim

Understand that this change in a target happens ever so slowly. And before the person realizes it, they begin to neglect themselves. They neglect their appearance, their housework, even their health!

1. Targets will often isolate themselves and become shut-ins.

2. They fail to make themselves presentable.

3. They stop exercising and forego physical check-ups.

4. They withdraw from people and social gatherings.

5. They don’t get adequate sleep and nutrition.

6. Some overeat for comfort and gain weight.

7. Some stop eating and lose too much weight.

8. Some even begin using alcohol and drugs.

In short, they let themselves go!

These are the reasons why, if you’re a target of bullying, it’s even more important that you take care of yourself.

bullying

Bullying and life – pictured as a word Bullying and a wreck ball to symbolize that Bullying can have bad effect and can destroy life, 3d illustration

When I was a target of bullying, I stopped believing in myself too, for a while, only I didn’t neglect my appearance.  Instead, I got mad. Damn mad! And in my anger, I grew more determined to take care of myself. The more I was bullied, the better (and more flashy) I dressed. I also exercised to keep myself fit.

It was my way of thumbing my nose at the bullies- a poke in the eye to them, or a proverbial middle finger.

I became as a peacock fanning out her tail to show her beautiful colors. It was also a means for me to maintain what control I did have, which was control over my body and appearance. Also, I wanted to keep my self-esteem from completely bottoming out.

It was only one of the ways I fought like hell to hang on to my dignity and to maintain what I could of myself. And today, I believe it saved me in so many ways.

I may not have had control over how others viewed me. No one has that kind of control. 

I may not have had control over how others treated me.

I may not have had control over my reputation.

And I may not have had control over my physical well being as I got the snot beat out of me a few times.

But, what I did have was control over my hygiene and how I looked!

That was the one thing those creeps couldn’t have control of!

However, I knew so many other bullied people who give up on themselves, and it breaks my heart for them!

So, please! Please, don’t give up. Hang on to what power you do have with everything in you! You’ll thank yourself for it later. I promise!

You Don’t Need to Explain Yourself to a Bully

Why? Because bullies don’t care what your reasons are. The only reason they blame you for something and try to bait you into explaining yourself is the psychological payoff they get from it. The psychological payoffs, being satisfaction, gratification, and a massive rush of power.

While you’re standing there wasting your breath, trying to convince the bully that you aren’t guilty of whatever it is that they’re accusing you or attacking you for, the bullies are mentally smirking and patting themselves (and each other) on the backs over how easily they’ve got you to react, how easily they can scare you and make you nervous, and get you all up in arms. Some things don’t need an explanation.

Here are more reasons why you shouldn’t explain yourself to a bully:

1. No matter what you say, how calm you are when you say it, how convincing you may sound, or how much evidence you may have to support you, bullies will never believe you anyway.

2. Understand that bullies only believe whatever feels right, useful, and convenient for them.

3. They aren’t interested in evidence or facts. Any facts may only deter them for the time being, but believe me when I tell you. Your bullies will only get angrier at you for having the gall to prove them wrong. Then, they’ll regroup, reorganize, then come back at you with a whole new accusation and demand yet another explanation later.

Understand that anytime bullies accuse you of wrongdoing that you neither committed nor know anything about, deep inside, they already know you’re innocent.

They are fully aware that you had nothing to do with the transgression. Realize that it’s only a trap to get you to react and give them that rush of power that you’ve been giving them all along and that they crave and can’t seem to get enough of.

Even when you produce evidence to prove your point, you must work to gather that evidence.

Just knowing they have you jumping through hoops to prove yourself is enough to give them the thrills they’re looking for.

So, instead of letting them bait you into a defense, you should be asking yourself,

1. “Who are these morons?

2. “Who are they that I should have to explain anything?”

3. “Since when do I have to explain anything to these jackholes? They don’t pay my bills!”

Understand that you don’t owe these people a damn thing!

I understand that bullies can be intimidating and threatening. It’s hard to resist an explanation when you’re scared to death and not began rattling off an excuse in nervousness, hoping that a reasonable explanation will make the harassment go away. But trust me, it won’t!

It certainly didn’t make things better for me. If anything, it only got worse because my reaction only made me look like an easy target.

But once I realized what they were doing, I began to get bored with them and walk away because their games no longer affected me. The same will be for you too, and you’ll feel much better. And the icing on the cake will be that you’ll take the wind out of the bullies’ sails, and they’ll finally leave you alone.

With knowledge comes empowerment.