Jason Y: If you’re retarded, you should be bullied !! It’s only nature’s way. Just kidding.
I wrote a post recently that seemed to support bullying. I would like to clarify my position on that matter so people don’t get the wrong idea about where I stand.
I don’t support bullying. Instead I support teasing, roughhousing and childhood horsing around, that sort of thing. It can be pretty mean, but it’s not really bullying.
Actual bullying, if it what I think it is, is very ugly and doesn’t seem to benefit anyone except maybe the bully. It’s a very evil thing, but it also seems to be part of human nature. I was not bullied a lot as a boy, teen and young man, but I did get bullied some. It was never the whole class or everyone around; it was always just 1-3 idiots who got it in their heads that this was a good idea. The vast majority of the people I knew would not support the bullies and wound support me instead.
Whether it makes you stronger, I have no idea. I think it does the opposite to a lot of people – it seems to damage them even years afterwards. I know that I still almost have PTSD about some of the bullying I went through, and that was 37-45 years ago.
I think if you get through bullying with your self-esteem and sanity pretty much intact, maybe it makes you stronger. But that’s a lousy way to get stronger. I will say though that weathering through life’s toughest episodes does make you stronger, assuming that you get through them without too much damage and with your self-worth intact. I would say that they toughen you up. It’s a crappy way to get toughened up, but life in general is going to have all sorts of very nasty, ugly and stressful episodes. That is sad, but it is just the nature of life.
My father and I did not have a very good relationship, but one thing he always said about me was that I was resilient. My father always used to say, “Bob always bounces back, no matter what. That’s the thing about Bob. He gets knocked down and then he is down for a bit, but after a while he jumps right back in pretty good shape. I don’t know how he does it.” I think there is something said for the ability to bounce back or be resilient. I would recommend this skill to anyone. It’s a fantastic skill to have in life as it makes life so much easier and more fun to boot.
I am not sure how I am resilient, but I actually like myself. Maybe too much, but still…No matter what happens to me, I’m still great, and I won’t let people or life beat me into hating myself or getting down. If you think you are hot and the bad things that happen to you are often not really your fault because you tried your hardest, then that inner strength or self-esteem may well keep you carrying on.
In these cases, denial and projection might even be adaptive. I tend to blame other people for a lot of the lousy things that have happened to me. Whether that is true, I have no idea, but it keeps me feeling good about myself deep down inside.