PEERS, NOT DOMINEERS
WILL THIS EXPERIENCE BRAWL WITH MY FUTURE ACTIONS?
Have you ever been hurt by a person’s words or actions, whether intentional or not and left feeling distressed, losing the urge to face a new day?
Bullying can be identified as any act where a person deliberately intimidates, coerces or abuses an individual emotionally and/or physically. It can really happen anywhere- in your neighborhood, school or even workplace and might lead to lasting and irreversible outcomes. About 75% of the people being bullied choose to stay silent about it and often move towards self-desolation. Bullying often stems through past trauma or rejection and grows into protrusion of suffering onto others.
One should work to bring an end to this tormenting evil of finding happiness in someone’s agony starts from normalizing the art of peaceful expression and respectful communication, being a friend instead of shedding dominance.
AM I THE CULPRIT?
To respond to this dubiety, one must understand where he/she is disposed. There are three fundamental perspectives of bullying and action needs to be taken depending on one’s stance.
The bully, referring to the one causing the torment, usually tries to mask his/her own pain and vulnerability by bullying others. The reason for such pain may be any- not receiving attention at home, fear of rejection, past trauma, struggling at school or others. However, no matter how big a rationale underpinned, bullying others to overcome it doesn’t abide. Bullies often seem to prey on someone vulnerable, like themselves, by projecting their precepts onto their victims. They try to ‘harden up’ the emotions of their victim because that’s how they were treated and they think it gave the best outcome possible. Justifying bullying by calling it tough love or other synonyms might lift the bully’s conscience, but it most certainly is not the way out.
The victim is the individual facing the torment. A person might be bullied on the basis of excuses like appearance, speech, not having a peer group or something that differentiates them from others. People being bullied start to keep to themselves as the critic inside makes them believe that the bully’s words might actually be true. The fear of further humiliation keeps them from asking help from their peers, teachers or parents, thereby increasing shyness and anxiety. In certain cases, a victim might also turn unsympathetic and project his/her hurt onto people around him/her. Bullying scars victims mentally as well as physically, leading them to believe the abuser’s perspective of themselves. Ignoring such remarks, on the other hand, might be tolerable at first, but as the insults get more personal and publicized, the impact can be severe and lead to unresolved anger and trust issues lifelong. Ignorance might not be bliss after all.
A group or individual observing someone getting bullied is the bystander. This perspective isn’t given much importance as it isn’t connected to the bullying directly; nonetheless, it is as relevant as the other two. Someone watching a person getting bullied might not take any action and suppress their guilt by calling it a friendly tease. Even so, looking the other way with the excuse of this being none of your business is highly unprincipled. Some people don’t get involved due to the fear of being bullied themselves and others give an uncomfortable laugh, both of which may further encourage the bully and deteriorate the situation. There are a lot of ways to distract a bully in a placid manner and they are certainly more directed towards a solution. Living with the guilt of not intervening, however, will only inflict further damage on all three parties.
IS MY TOMORROW EVER GOING TO BE BETTER?
After consideration of your position, you can make a difference for yourself and others. If you’re facing a bully, asking for help from your peers, parents or professionals will significantly modify the situation and will also reduce the negative jolt on your present and future self. Sharing the issue helps one to cope better and find a solution, instead of having built-up emotions and projecting them onto others around. Moreover, if you’re a bystander watching a bully in action, warning/telling him/her to stop or informing an official or adult immediately is the best alternative to untangle the situation. The intimidator should let no past unpleasant experiences shape his/her personality and avoid deflecting astray to a path of vengeance. Taking corrective action if any form of bullying is noticed is the optimum way to resolve such vexations. Rising above to a better tomorrow by learning from yesterday will truly help you to overcome every ordeal that was meant to pull you down.