There are so many forms of bullying and sometimes it can take you by surprise when you are on the receiving end. Most of us have been bullied at some point or other in our lives. How we deal with this says a lot about the type of people we are. I guess most us think of bullying as being the school type but this can also spill in to the work place and even family or friendship groups. It can be as obvious as someone using intimidation tactics to force you to do something you are not comfortable with or as insidious as ignoring you, humiliation and unacceptable criticism.
If bullying is allowed to continue it can destroy self esteem and self worth, victims of bullying will become depressed and isolated if no one steps in to help.
We all have a responsibility to step in when we see someone suffering because of the actions of another person. In many cases I am sure that the bully is unaware of how they are being perceived so the only way for them to change their behaviour is for someone to confront them.
As a parent it is hard to see your child upset because they are being bullied in some way and we need to ensure that we can offer the support they need. It maybe that the school needs to be involved, after all they are all children and educating them in how to behave socially is as important as learning to read, write and count. Children that are not tackled about their behaviour when they are young will, perhaps, unknowingly continue these behaviours in to adulthood. Which in actual fact often will leave them being isolated and left out because the community they are within do not want to be part of their lives. Of course we need to look after the bullies too, after all most people would not intentionally hurt another person unless they were lacking something in there lives.
When I think of the times I have come in to contact with any form of bullying it is usually because of emotionally charged issues elsewhere spilling into school or work life or envy, which often leads to the green monster belittling the one they are jealous of.
Someone once said that silence is a strong weapon to be used when in an environment where bullying is rife, but for me silence is never the way. Silence is good when you wish to prevent an arguement spilling out of control, but not once a situation has spiralled out of control.
It is imperative that we speak up and out about all forms of bullying, it may well make life uncomfortable for a while for all those concerned but how can we move forward and resolve differences if we never speak up.
I am a fixer, a doer, I like to try and make things better, sometimes this inevitably means that things get worse before they get better, but if I sat and did nothing I honestly believe that is worse. I teach my children that standing up to be counted when you believe something is wrong can be daunting but is the only way to keep our dignity and pride.