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It Gets Better: How I Survived Bullying

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One of the worst things about bullying is that it happens everywhere. I was bullied at school and even around the neighborhood for having a huge head and a thin body. I kept telling myself to ignore them, but they didn’t go away. In fact, I think I gave them more reasons to taunt me. The bullying went on for years, and it only stopped when I went away to college. But even though the bullies eventually went away, they left effects that I’m going to have to deal with for the rest of my life. It’s hard, and there were definitely times where I wished I would stop existing, but I didn’t give up. Even though the things they did to me left me having depression and anxiety, I didn’t let go. Now looking back, I would like to share some of the things I did that helped get through one of the darkest chapters in my life. I’m not saying that they will be practical for everyone, but they were for me so I am hoping that maybe I could help make things better for someone out there. And if you think you’re that person, read on.

Acknowledge What Happened

Ignoring your bullies will not make them leave; I learned that the hard way. Most victims of bullying follow the “ignore them” and “just stay away from them” methods, but those don’t work always.

“Clearly, ‘intent to harm’ starts us down the slippery slope—perhaps more slippery than imagined, for it not only involves the purported aim(s) of the bully, but the equally subjective determinations of that intent by bystanders and authority figures,” wrote Laura Martocci, PhD. “Their perceptions –the corresponding, discretionary counterpart of intent–undeniably guide any adjudication of claims to have been bullied.”

Sometimes you need to face the issue head-on so you can think of a solution or a way out of it.  That’s what I did, and it allowed me to make a plan on how to make things better.

Tell Yourself It’s Not Your Fault

It is essential. Never let yourself feel like you deserve the act of bullying. It is not your fault, it never was. Bullies target people who possess something they hate or want to have. They love the feeling of being in control so take that away from them. Be in charge of the things they make you feel. Never let yourself get defined by the things they tell you. You’re not the problem, they are.

Susan Heitler, PhD, asserts, “Do not minimize the incident.” She says that for parents, it is important to “[s]ay explicitly that what the bully did was not right.”

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 There’s No Shame In Getting Help

I tried to fight the bullying alone, but I failed. If there’s one thing I indeed learned from the whole experience, that is that there is no shame in asking for help. Luckily, a couple of my friends and family were there to fight for me and put the bullies in their rightful place. Did the bullying stop? No, it did not, but it gets lessened because they know I’m not alone.

According to Miki Kashtan, PhD, “Those who have someone to talk with, even in the context of serious abuse, have far greater chances of managing their adult life in a way that works for them, even if nothing can be done to change the circumstances.” Don’t be afraid to ask for help, especially now that forces are working on making it more available for anyone who is getting bullied.

These are just some of the things I did that helped me survive to bully. It’s hard, but as long as you have the strength and hope that things will eventually get better, they definitely will. It’s a cliché, I know, but I’m going to say it anyway – hold on and you will get through it.

How To Balance Work, Life, and Relationship

 

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If you feel that you are in a situation where you are ripping your hair out because of the stress building up from your daily life, and you don’t know what to do anymore, always remember that there are possible solutions that might help you get through with the struggle. It may not work for everyone, but it will inevitably create a positive impact on a person’s lifestyle. Here are some tips on how to balance your work, relationship with other people, and your personal life.

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I Never Thought I Could Become A Bully

There are times in our lives that we encounter bullying. Though we might think about how damaging it can be, there will be those days that we want to change the situation whenever we can.  It’s undeniably true that a person will want to have the ability to get things back on track and move forward with it. But the decisions we do can sometimes end up on things that shouldn’t happen.

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The Power Of Optimism

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There will come a time in our life where problems and stresses will take over our subconscious level. Since our mind occupies a lot of different things, we might be able to have complications in dealing with our stressors. However, the power of positivity can make a validation on improving a person’s relationship, career, and life as a whole.

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How To Relieve Negativities Through Meditation

 

Going with the natural flow of life is cool. Your clients and bosses love your spontaneity and you accomplish and experience a lot of things without inhibitions. Despite that, this attitude also makes you susceptible to diverse forms of negativity, including disappointment, stress, pressure, and more.

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Counseling for Victims of Bullying

Most people will connect bullying as an event that occurs during our years in the playground of our youthful days. It is much more frequent to occur at school, but the truth is it can happen anywhere at any age. Bullying can be seen at work, home, school, or even on the internet. Continue reading

Depression Caused By Bullying

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Bullying is indeed one of the leading causes of anxiety and depression among teens nowadays. There is too much tension in the emotional and mental aspects of kids who try hard to understand different societal norms. The impact of bullying is unsullied that it often leads to severe isolation and sometimes suicide attempts. But how does bullying relate to mental health issues? What are the triggering factors that can identify its existence? Is there a way to address bullying situations that lead to depression?

It Creates Physical, Emotional, And Mental Torture

Bullying comes in many forms. But regardless of its ways, it always ends up in severe overall damage. There are cases that the act can immensely harm someone physically. It causes bruises and wounds, and sometimes fractures or long-term injuries. On the emotional aspect, it creates an explainable fear or trauma that sometimes leads to isolation. And for mental health impacts, it damages psychological balance where most victims become open to self-harm and suicide attempts.

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“Previous studies have found a link between bullying and a higher risk of mental health problems during childhood, such as low self-esteem, poor school performance, depression, and an increased risk for suicide,” explains Dr. Andre Sourander, a professor of child psychiatry at the University of Turku in Finland 

One of the triggering factors of bullying starts with individuals’ being different. It is where they think, dress, look, speak, differently than the rest. Other people view them weird or unusual because of their behavior and responses. These individuals appear judged, condemned, and unaccepted because they are not like everyone else. With that particular instance where people point out their unique personality, these bullied ones feel upset about themselves. Eventually, it becomes a case of social anxiety and clinical depression.

Honestly, there is no way to address bullying when the victims can’t identify their weak points. If these individuals never learn to stand up for themselves, they will never escape the continuous torment and agony of such act. Yes, battling with all the emotional and mental torture is not easy. But these bullied individuals must understand that it is the only way. Because being afraid is not an option here. What these bullied people need to do is to gain back their confidence no matter what. Because if they don’t, they will end up miserable for the rest of their lives. They will forever become a victim of an act that never promises to stop.

“Because adults often are not there to observe it, we need the kids to be the ones to stand up and say it’s not okay,” Kelly Lyn Mulvey, Ph.D. says. “It sounds like a scary thing to do. But peer intervention really works. Speaking up and standing up to bullies tends to reduce the attacks.”

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Mental Health Matters

Bullying may be a physical or cyber act, but its goal looks forward only to one thing – emotionally and mentally hurt others.

“(Our study) calls attention to just how serious bullying can be, and it reinforces what we’ve been learning, which is that bullying is not just a rite of passage, it’s not just part of growing up and all kids experience it and they’re stronger for it,” Dr. Mark Schuster said.

So instead of accepting it as part of the societal norm, people should learn to figure out how to eradicate its existence. Yes, the process can take a long way because people seem to get used to it. However, it is not an excuse to make others feel miserable and hopeless just because they are weak or different. Everybody deserves to have a stable mental and emotional state, so bullying should be out of the picture. But to be able to do that, people must learn to understand the importance of fighting their own battles with or without the chances of winning it. Because in the end, winning is not everything. Sometimes the fight itself is more than enough to tell the world that bullying is depressingly unacceptable.

Is There Such Thing As Unintentional Bullying?

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In psychological studies, people find it more appealing to address and cater to the needs of those individuals who experience bullying. There is an assumption that these individuals are suffering the worst types of anxiety, stress, and depression. However, what some experts miss out is the fact that bullying consists of two individuals. There is a bullied individual and a bully one. But since most health professionals are more focused on the victims, they tend not to notice the treatments needed for those bully ones.

Societal Facts

Not all bullies are born bullies. Some of them also have mental conditions. In some unfortunate cases, almost half of them are battling with post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) and even dissociative identity disorder (DID). Not all bullies are bullying others intentionally. There are cases that some of them are not even aware that they are hurting others.

“Those who behave like bullies tend to have high self-esteem and hubristic pride. They attack others to take away their shame – which allows them to remain unaware of their feelings,” clinical psychologist and professor Dr. Mary Lamia says.

These individuals sometimes cannot identify the wrong behavior towards the right one. That is because their environmental orientation tends to be different from the rest. There are cases where their families, friends, and other people surrounding them are accepting the behavior as part of these individuals’ personality. But for some, it is an act based on a negative attitude and inconsiderate trait.

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An Unintentional Bullying

Sometimes, unintentional bullying has something to do with people being brutally honest. Since a lot of people do not want to hear the truth, someone’s honesty becomes a threat. Meaning, no matter how truthful bullying individuals can become, the things they say get considered as an attack to someone’s life, personality, and beliefs. Therefore, even if they prove a point, their views and opinions become worthless. That is because society sees them as individuals without considerations. That no matter how honest they can be, as long as they are hurting other people’s feelings, they are always the bad guys.

Eileen Kennedy-Moore, Ph.D., tells us that, “When we fail to distinguish between bullying and ordinary meanness, we trivialize the very serious cases of peer abuse.”

In some cases, unintentional bullying refers to someone who physically hurt others without reason. More likely, it becomes a habit. There are cases when people hit, kick, slap, and pull others’ hairs simply because they want to. It gets referred to as bullying because there is physical violence involved in the act. But for some individuals, they see to it as a regular thing. Somehow it represents an emotional discomfort too.

Sad Reality

Bullying is not acceptable by all means, and people believe it. However, some individuals want experts to focus not only on the victims but to the bullies as well.

“The toughest part of the entire bullying dilemma is how to respond to those who bully,” wrote Miki Kashtan, Ph.D.

These individuals are not at all bad people. They are also victims of their past traumatic experiences. Therefore, judging and condemning them without knowing the story behind their suffering is far worse.

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I would never agree with the act of bullying. But I will also not close the door in helping those people who hurt others intentionally or unintentionally.  We all create mistakes and sometimes, understanding and looking beyond things is all we need to get along with each other. Let us be fair and help both victims of bullying and their bullies.

I Am A Bully Because Of These

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A lot of my friends say that I am mean, rude, and disrespectful. I don’t care. They can say whatever they want because I feel better about myself when I am like this. I find myself powerful, unpredictable, and full of confidence in such ways. I agree to them that I am not a genuine person. But honestly, I am not trying to be one. I might as well stay as a bully because I love the power of controlling things and people. It makes me alive. Or so I thought.

I Don’t Want To Feel Weak

I am a bully because I do not want people to know I am weak. I do not like the feeling when someone is hurting me because I know that my inner self will not be able to handle it. I want to stay as a bully because I can hide my weakness. I can make people believe that I am capable of everything when, in fact, I am afraid of lots of things. I am a bully because I cannot accept the fact that I have more imperfections rather than desirable qualities. I am an individual who wants to gain validation in whatever circumstances. “Every once in a while, in a particularly vulnerable person, the despair or rage or both erupt into violence, either against the self or against the whole school, and only then does school bullying become an issue to the larger community,” Peter Gray, Ph.D. wrote.

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I Am Lonely

I am a bully because I cannot find happiness on things around me. People question my existence and judge me for being me. It makes me lonely because society wants me to become one of them. I bully people because I want them to notice me, regardless if it appears negatively. I want to feel that I am not alone, that is why I make sure that when I bully someone, that person never forgets about me. I tend to like bullying others because it makes me feel that people who can recognize my existence surrounds me. I am a bully because I believe that I am better off with this attitude. “Our emotional lives are a bit like wells. In order to invite more positive feelings into them, we have to get rid of the negative ones,” Marilyn Price-Mitchell, Ph.D. says.

I Got Bullied

“To say that we are inclined to act on a particular feeling is not to suggest that doing so is always advantageous or appropriate. Or, to put the matter differently, we have evolved feelings that are useful to us in most circumstances; but not all,” says Fredric Neuman, M.D.

I am a bully because I experienced getting bullied by others too. I am all alone, and no one dares to save me from the miserable and unfortunate circumstances that I was having. I realized that when I become one of these bullies, I can guarantee another life for me. I can become powerful so that no one can harm me anymore. I am a bully because I do not want to get bullied again. So instead of me trying to fight these people, I choose to become one of them. I came up to the realization that instead of getting hurt, I might as well sacrifice others’ emotional and mental state so that I can save myself.

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I am a bully because of my choice. I know people will never like me, and they will never accept my reasons for becoming like this. I am not going to push myself towards their approval, either. But honestly, if I were given a chance to change things, I would. I am too tired of acting tough because deep inside, this bully is dying.

Finding The Best Circle Of Friends

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One of the toughest times in teenagers’ life is finding the right circle of friends. Shirley Vandersteen, PhD, highlights the value of finding the right friends: “Good friends are vitally important to your mental health and to the quality of your life.”

Since there are a lot of diversities out there when it comes to personality and opinions, it becomes hard to look for those peers that appreciate values and respect one another. But even so, there are instances that young adults can identify which types of friends are best fit for them. As long as they have the standards of choosing which ones are beneficial to their overall development, there is a guarantee that they will have the best companions.

Loving The Imperfections

With society’s view on what is in and out, teens are fonder of giving themselves to those people who are not contributing a healthy environment for them. There are too much judgment and bullying that seem to control what types of friendship these young adults should choose. It is as if these kids are always trying so hard to look good for others and not considering their emotional and mental needs. With that, instead of loving their imperfections, they work so hard to change themselves only to be accepted by their chosen peers. In line with this issue, teenagers must realize that friendship is not about perfection. It is about loving everything about the person. It should not have to limit one’s potential of becoming himself. There must be an avoidance of judgment and bullying.

Accepting Individuality

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The concern with a lot of people is they try so hard to do everything that pleases everybody. With the current trend and social media impact, everyone wants to fit in. With that, most young adults get confused with their personality because there is a bit of a standard that seems to take over their right and wrong choices. So, instead of hanging out with people who are also lovingly different in their ways, most of these confused teens prefer to enter a circle that shares the same personality, opinions, and perceptions. That includes getting in the wrong direction. What these kids should realize is that being different is not a crime. And trying to be unconventional is something that is not shameful at all. The best circle of friends encourages each of their peers to become more confident with their individuality.

Shainna Ali PhD, LMHC, notes, “In a healthy relationship, your friend does not have to be your clone to understand you. Even when your differences are highlighted, compassion, respect, and empathy can help you to feel understood and are crucial in a healthy friendship.” If that is not the kind of people teenagers’ share their life with, there is a guarantee of undesirable growth.

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A great friendship is not measured by how much one can give to another. It is not about who gives more and who gives less. Friendship is something that develops, supports, and encourages people to become themselves. Meaning, there is a focus on lifting each others’ strength and not bullying them and destroying their confidence. Yes, finding these types of circles is indeed hard because no particular teenage group shares the same values as everyone.

Suzanne Degges-White, PhD, adds, “The investment we make in friends – both those who provide instrumental or emotional support – is well worth the time involved in building and maintaining these relationships. There is no price that can be placed on the security of knowing that people will be there for you when you just don’t feel up to being there for yourself.”

However, young adults should remember two things. If there is too much cultural toxicity, they should leave immediately. If there are self-growth and development, they must keep the friends they currently have.