Children aren’t the only ones that must deal with bullies; adults must deal with them as well. They take different shapes and sizes and the bullying can take on different dimensions according to the dynamics of the two people involved in the process. I’ve been thinking about bullying this morning and thought I’d write about it because it’s important. So often some people will accept any kind of treatment from another because they think they deserve it or they do so out of lack of confidence in themselves.
So let’s provide a definition of what bullying is to be precise: Bullying: 1 : to treat abusively, 2 : to affect by means of force or coercion, (Source: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/bullying)
Why do people bully one another? We see it on the international stage when the United States exercises military might in order to enforce it’s form of government upon people around the world that have different traditions and history than we do. We can see it in action on playgrounds when children pick on one another for differences.
A personal example would be when I was a child I had weak eye muscles, which resulted in a pronounced lazy eye. I was ridiculed, called lazy eyes and stared at like I was an oddity. Kids are cruel, there’s nothing new to that truth, but how about when adults torment one another. What would be an example of bullying of the adult variety? If you notice in the dictionary definition, bullying is to treat another abusively. So the word abuse has entered the discussion. What are some examples of abuse? Let’s start with emotional abuse because I believe this form of abuse is far more pervasive than physical abuse, but of course more press is given to physical abuse. Here are a few questions to ask yourself that will aid you in this:
Do you feel that you can’t discuss with your partner what is bothering you? Does your partner frequently criticize you, humiliate you, or undermine your self-esteem? Does your partner ridicule you for expressing yourself? Does your relationship swing back and forth between a lot of emotional distance and being very close? Do you sometimes feel trapped in the relationship? (Source: http://www.lilaclane.com/relationships/emotional-abuse/)
I brought up emotional abuse or bullying at the hands of a significant other, such as a spouse or partner, because that tends to be where the abuse comes from because these are the people we generally allow closest to us.
What of physical abuse or bullying aside from the obvious bruising or other physical effects? Sometimes people don’t talk about the abuse they’re enduring.
Abusers instill feelings of inadequacy in victims. Victims feel they deserve to be punished by abusers. Emotional dependency of the abuser on the victim. Blaming the victim for the abuser’s actions. Source: http://www.abusefacts.com/articles/Classic.php
Dear readers, please understand abuse is unacceptable and trust your gut. If you feel you’re being mistreated or downright abused then address it. Talk to a member of clergy, your best friend or whomever you can trust with this painful truth. Remember, you’re not alone, there’s always someone there to help.