Sunday, September 30, 2012

Evolving Bullism

At fifty, I am finding that victims of childhood bullies often find themselves being bullied their whole lives... The difference is, how we are now able to handle it.  Maybe, I needed to be a victim as a child so I could stand up tall as an adult.  Maybe, it was so I could teach and protect others.  Regardless, it is interesting to me to see. a target is a target. It doesn't mean I am weak.  Nor beneath others.  It simply means, unhappy or mean people will continue to pick on those they find that are not cruel by nature.

Bullying is the use of force or coercion to abuse or intimidate others. The behavior can be habitual and involve an imbalance of social or physical power. It can include verbal harassment or threat, physical assault or coercion and may be directed repeatedly towards particular victims, perhaps on grounds of race, religion, gender sexuality, or ability.  The victim of bullying is sometimes referred to as a "target". 

I have written about Bullies before. Here, Here, and Here. But these are more of childhood bullied days.

As a child, my bullies were bigger than me. I was small, weak, and quietly accepting. An easy target.

This photo was taken at age 6. By a man, that molested me. He was my parent's friend.  This photo is intriguing to me.  Holding my hands, a nervous habit. No smile on my face.. a look of a frightened animal caught in her hunters glaze.  I believe the eye make up is because of a dance recital my sister and I were about to perform that evening. Haunting, but beautiful, to me.

 Today, as a middle aged woman, I continued to be pushed and pulled and threatened. This photo is more current (school photo taken last month).  I have learned to be a little more confident and have learned to be more understanding to things that have happened to me.

This week I have been "bullied" by those I love, and those I serve, as well as an over-zealous bill collector of my parents affairs.
My dad, while I know he appreciates all I do, gets frustrated at his situation, feels boxed in, or as he put it... "held up in this damn cell I have him in". He lashes at who he is closest to, which is now me.  {I am beginning to understand some of Mom's frustrations even more, and so wish she had allowed Sis & I to help more}. He was, not exactly kind to me with some rather harsh words.  Dad's behavior followed an argument with my Hubby... so I had already had enough of men in my life, telling me how things need to be.
Later in the week, I had a "friend/co-worker" feel necessary to try and hurt me.
To top it off...this same day,  I had a couple of minors try to bully me and tried to turn others against me, including making accusations that could have cost me much had anyone taken them seriously. This was immaturity at it's finest. A "child" with power struggles that wanted to show her power over authority. (but then again, as John Melloncamp has said..."I find Authority, authority always wins". Thank God!)
Seriously.  I give my heart, time, energy to these kids... To have one or two do something mean and to flat out LIE. Oh my gosh! My heart was broken.  I nearly quit.  But then again... remembering, survival skills and that I must show these young ladies as well as the ones watching... Bullying will not win. Especially with me.  Shoot.  I've had things happen to me that they can't even imagine.  God prepared me for the situations like this.  As well as putting wonderful strong anchor folks in my life that keep me up! I hid while some tears shed, got up some gumption and stood tall.  NEVER LET THEM SEE YOUR FEAR.

Some people go their whole lives without others trying to tear it down, provide pain or scars.  I am so grateful, I know some folks that have been Blessed with this.  They produce a sense of confidence that doesn't get picked into.  I may not have that kind of strength, however, I have a certain sensitivity that understands and perhaps can help others.  If nothing else, maybe I can set an example of admiration to those who get it.

Today, is a new day.  I wasn't destroyed last week.  Maybe torn down a bit, but I survived.  My head is high and I am ready for this new week.  What is it that God has in store for me?  What mountains to climb valleys to descend.  This is what I have been given, so bring it on. I am ready to inspire♥


Kristen In London said...

Honey, I have had no experience with bullying myself but without breaking a confidence I have had close experience with someone who was... there is nothing like the pain and fear, and isolation and sense of being alone. Even those closest to you cannot always help. I feel so very VERY strongly for you, and the strongest possible admiration for the adult person you are able to be with your family. Of course our husbands and fathers and everyone else can push buttons and pull chains and make us crazy. But the beautiful thing is how you have knitted this pain into a wearable garment. Bless you, and your achievements. You are an inspiration to me.

lesworknow said...

Your ability to see these situations and build upon it is admirable.
Your armor is evolving.
You are strong beyond your trials.
Blessings to you, always. :)

Reya Mellicker said...

You will prevail, if for no other reason than your innate goodness.

Sending love. Keep breathing.

rosaria williams said...

Keep up your strength during these times. Your core is solid gold!

Darcel said...

Thank you for sharing your life with us, Janis. You've been through quite a lot. We have many similarities.