Bullying is the lowest form of attempt of self-empowerment.
A bully bullies because they feel so insecure & inept in themselves that putting someone else down makes them feel just that little bit better.
Dealing with bullies can be challenging, especially when you have had them in your life for a long time.
Dealing with bullying from childhood causes us to develop ways of coping, often by ignoring it, letting it wash over us, or some other way of not feeling how the bully is really making you feel. That approach works to protect you as a child but it doesn't alleviate the problem of bullying.
So here are my tips of how to deal with bullies in an empowered way.
1. Decide whether you want a relationship with this person or not.
An easy way to decide is to ask yourself this question "Do they bring any value into my life?" If your answer is no, then it's ok not to have a relationship with them no matter who they are. If the answer is yes, then you get to decide how much or little of a relationship you want with them.
2. Be clear on your boundaries & express them to the bully.
Whether you want a relationship or not with this person, you need to tell them clearly how they make you feel, that you will not tolerate it & what your boundaries are. A bully needs to be dealt with on their level, which is a very low level, so be simple & clear with them. This is no time for being nice, what they are doing is not nice.
3. Expect no apology.
Bullies never apologise. Release any expectation of positive response from the bully, they will not give a positive response, ever. Know that they will either back down if you have been successful in expressing yourself clearly & strongly, or they will attempt to continue the bullying if you have not been clear & strong enough to match where they are at in their small minds.
4. Expect it to make you feel angry
Anger is the correct emotion to feel about bullying. Whether someone is bullying a child in a playground or a grown man. It is right to feel anger toward these people. Do not feel guilty for that emotion. Accept it for what it is: the emotion that goes with witnessing something hurtful. When you accept that bullying & standing up to bullies will make you feel angry, acknowledging that feeling will dissipate it. This is not a time to be nice, it is a time to stand up for yourself & say no more.
5. Let it go
It's good to feel compassion for them inwardly - they must hurt so much they have completely switch off their emotions to be able to do what they do. But they are not your responsibility, you do not owe them anything. Their learning, growing & changing is completely their responsibility, not yours. Whether they learn or grow at all in this lifetime is up to them, not you. Leave them to do that for themselves.
An open letter to Eric.
Your snooping has made it very easy to get this message to you. Other than reading this: your snooping is not welcome. Cease & desist. Cease the calls, cease the drive by's & cease the snooping around my business. Your being the father of my partner gives you no right to harass or stalk me.
Let me make myself clear that I have no relationship with you. The superficial relationship (not even bothering to find out anything about me but guessing some completely fictitious) that we had when I was actively encouraging your son to be in touch with you is no more. It ended when you disrespected me & were rude to me on 2 occasions. I do not tolerate that kind of behaviour from anyone. I don't need to.
Contrary to your belief your son is not a mindless puppet who I control. If you want to find someone to blame for your poor relationship with your son (which was the case long before I met him) go into your bathroom and look in the mirror. Better still talk to him & ask him.
An emotionally capable parent would be glad that their child had a partner who stood up to them when someone bullies them, belittles them, treats them like they can't even do anything good in life, tells them that they are stupid & tells them that they should be grateful for a mindless minimum wage job (because they are stupid & wouldn't be able to do anything better). However, the bullying parent would see me as a threat.
Your son is far smarter & more of a man that you will ever be. Your relationship with him is between you & him, if you have wrecked it then that is your fault. I will not tolerate anybody who hurts my partner in the way that you do. But as I say, your relationship with him is between you & him, not me.
You have no part in my life. You will never be a part of my life. Cease & desist the calling & snooping. I have no qualms in making it official if I am to notice you continuing this behaviour.
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