Bullying: Rising Above

This is an issue I usually keep pretty quiet about, but I assure you my feelings on the subject are anything but shy or relaxed.

I was a victim of it, to the point where my family actually moved to a new town when I was young to get me away from it. Things had calmed down just before I left, and I found out years later it was because of my ‘big brother’ and next door neighbour basically telling the individual that if she went near me again he’d step in. Problem: Solved. Method: running away. Outcome, very positive.

The next instance occurred just a few years later in my new school but was rather minor in comparison. She and I actually were able to resolve our issues and became friends. We’ve lost touch now but I harbour no ill will.

University rolled around and wouldn’t you know in one of my last classes, my final semester that first bully was in my class. I almost fell out of my chair when the prof called out our names on that first night. My strategy, lie low and get through the class. I hoped she had grown up and forgotten me. I never spoke to her or looked her in the eye.  It worked for me.

Then I managed to go a few years without any troubles…until a new individual showed up at an, at that time, regular activity of mine and to this day I have no idea why, but decided I would be the fun one to pick on. It was never done directly, but believe me, it was done. I retaliated, I admit that, I said things I regret and wish I could take back, but at the time I was so annoyed they came out anyway. I backed out of the activity and seeing people I was friends with just to avoid the situation. About 2 years later the problem resolved itself, but I had been again, forced to retreat again and have something I enjoyed taken from me.

Unfortunately more of this behaviour came into my life during the week too. I put up with it and tried my best to deflect it and move forward but I reached my breaking point eventually and again, walked away.

Since then personal issues with another activity individual and their ‘posse’ as it were, have escalated. I had hoped that these issues were resolved eons ago, apparently not. In this case I have backed away and backed away and there isn’t any further back I’m willing to go in the matter. So I have decided to take a stand and push back, but in a constructive and diplomatic way with as much positivity as I can muster. Bullies in all shapes and forms simply seem to enjoy seeing others suffer at their hand whether it be physical or mental. I’ve been a victim mostly of the mental and am tired if it always being in my periphery and knocking my confidence down when it need not be knocked.

I don’t think there’s enough going on to help kids and in a lot of cases, adults who are going through this. The term ‘harassment’ is tossed in for adults, but there really needs to be policies in place for bullying specifically. People shouldn’t be pushed around by others and made to bend to their will. Open dialogue is the most effective way to get things done, why keep forcing issues and dictating how things should progress?

I’m aware of the parallels here with the political upheaval overseas, but I am choosing to write about this issue from a personal standpoint.

So I ask you, have you been through it? What are your strategies for coping and resolving the issues? How would you respond?How do you rise above when your temper flares?

For me with the latest issue, I’m writing a very (VERY) diplomatic letter, removing all emotion and tackling this as a business task. I have no time for this garbage in my life, no one does. Time to deal with it, put my biggest smile on (in type mind you) and not let myself have the last part of the activity taken from me. Hmpf!

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4 Responses

  1. stand strong on this one. I know where you’re coming from. And, yeah. It’s bullying.
    In the workplace it’s not allowed. Google Bill 168 and Ontario. There was a new law passed and came into effect this summer. It covers a lot and bullying is one of the things it covers.
    Actually, I believe workplaces (not sure what size – mine counted) were required to do training about this bill, and though some parts can be really controversial, I think it’s good.
    For instance, ostracizing and excluding people, a typical bullying activity, is not permissable. And there are legal ramifications.
    Interesting stuff. And a step in the right direction.

  2. Ugh! There is little worse than bullying to zap all of the joy out of your life. Interestingly enough, Mayi Carles was discussing a very similar topic on her Heartmade Blog today, you might want to check it out: http://www.heartmadeblog.com/blog/dealing-with-negativity-mean-spirited-people

  3. Bullying is such a show of cowardess. I have been there as a child and still continue to deal with it as an adult. I have had my job threatened and name defamed at the hands of a workplace bully!

  4. I have been bullied as a child; however it sucks to be bullied as adult. Currently I suffer the tyranny of a workplace bully. Sadly, my job has been threatened, training opportunities threatened to be removed, and, my name defamed. I think this is worse because my livelihood and career are at stake.

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