The Mudcat Café TM
Thread #54172   Message #838030
Posted By: Helen
30-Nov-02 - 08:09 PM
Thread Name: BS: bullying advice
Subject: RE: BS: bullying advice
The three areas of work where workplace bullying is most prevalent, according to Tim Field, are volunteer work, the health services - and, wait for it!! - teaching. So teachers can be bullied by other teachers and by their bosses as well. Not excusing their behaviour, but this is well documented.

And to stress again the importance of documenting the situation - as Firecat says, documentation "gives evidence of what exactly has happened, and makes it a lot easier to complain." Undocumented events are almost impossible to get results from.

Ireland, as to your son worrying about admitting that girls have been getting the "better" of him ("better" seems the wrong word here altogether) think about this: I have more degrees and qualifications than most people could poke a stick at, I have interesting and varied work experience, including working as a management consultant travelling around the state for a local government association, and I have been teaching management, business, human resource management, industrial relations, and workplace communication for years. I was also a Union rep for nearly 20 years and have close friends in our Union office. I still got cornered and caught by the bullying b*****d, and he won in the end because he got away with it. But not without a few of his own psychological wounds to lick, inflicted by me.

He is a serial bully of the worst kind: a sociopath. The clever type who uses words to hurt, rather than physical violence. The clever type who manipulates and back-stabs behind the scenes, and plays it straight for the audience, especially his own (female) manager.

I felt really stupid getting caught out and squashed like a bug by this person, but now I know that I was ambushed before I even walked in there on my first day. And, more importantly, I know that it was my niceness and my professionalism which made me a target, as well as my qualifications and experience, especially because I am a woman, and all that made him feel totally threatened.

Fred Miller said: "he's developing his strengh in the face of collective ugliness and insanity, which is a valuable life-skill for a man to have" and I agree with this, but I would change it to .."a valuable life-skill for *anyone* to have".

The hardest thing I had to do was to modify one of my most fundamental, most deeply held convictions which was that very few people are truly evil, and consequently people deserve the benefit of the doubt and only in extreme cases should I need to *fight* back, rather than deal with the situation with professional conflict resolution processes.

After encountering the bullying b*****d I now know that cold-hearted people who are *disconnected* from human empathy and who exhibit sociopathic tendencies can walk among us and get away with criminal behaviour. I won't put up with that behaviour, and now I will be able to recognise it much sooner, and stand my ground and demand my own right to be respected.

We are doing the bullies a favour by pointing out their dysfunctional behaviour and trying to help them to recognise and change before their behaviour becomes an established core of their interactions with others. To let them get away with their behaviour is to see them launch themselves on possibly a lifetime of dysfunction. Project these bullies forward in time, to when they have a position of power - what mayhem could they unleash then?