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BS: Bullying

Lizzie Cornish 1 07 Apr 11 - 08:07 AM
kendall 07 Apr 11 - 08:30 AM
Steve Shaw 07 Apr 11 - 08:34 AM
Backwoodsman 07 Apr 11 - 08:37 AM
GUEST,Patsy 07 Apr 11 - 09:16 AM
Steve Shaw 07 Apr 11 - 09:20 AM
GUEST,999 07 Apr 11 - 09:25 AM
Steve Shaw 07 Apr 11 - 09:33 AM
GUEST,999 07 Apr 11 - 09:52 AM
kendall 07 Apr 11 - 09:58 AM
GUEST,HiLo 07 Apr 11 - 10:22 AM
Backwoodsman 07 Apr 11 - 10:34 AM
Jeri 07 Apr 11 - 10:35 AM
ChrisJBrady 07 Apr 11 - 10:54 AM
GUEST,Eliza 07 Apr 11 - 11:13 AM
Jim Dixon 07 Apr 11 - 11:43 AM
Ebbie 07 Apr 11 - 11:45 AM
GUEST,999 07 Apr 11 - 12:01 PM
Sandy Mc Lean 07 Apr 11 - 01:20 PM
kendall 07 Apr 11 - 01:33 PM
Lizzie Cornish 1 07 Apr 11 - 01:37 PM
Jim Dixon 07 Apr 11 - 02:11 PM
peregrina 07 Apr 11 - 02:18 PM
GUEST,Name and addesss withheld 07 Apr 11 - 02:25 PM
Mysha 07 Apr 11 - 02:29 PM
maple_leaf_boy 07 Apr 11 - 02:42 PM
peregrina 07 Apr 11 - 02:48 PM
Little Hawk 07 Apr 11 - 02:56 PM
GUEST,Eliza 07 Apr 11 - 03:09 PM
Jeri 07 Apr 11 - 03:50 PM
Little Hawk 07 Apr 11 - 04:09 PM
Penny S. 07 Apr 11 - 04:10 PM
GUEST,Eliza 07 Apr 11 - 06:01 PM
Little Hawk 07 Apr 11 - 06:10 PM
GUEST,Eliza 07 Apr 11 - 06:20 PM
GUEST,Name and address withheld 07 Apr 11 - 06:55 PM
Bill D 07 Apr 11 - 07:10 PM
GUEST,Eliza 07 Apr 11 - 07:12 PM
Little Hawk 07 Apr 11 - 11:29 PM
Little Hawk 08 Apr 11 - 12:03 AM
JennieG 08 Apr 11 - 12:07 AM
GUEST,mg 08 Apr 11 - 12:53 AM
GUEST,Patsy 08 Apr 11 - 03:21 AM
The Fooles Troupe 08 Apr 11 - 04:48 AM
ChrisJBrady 08 Apr 11 - 05:37 AM
GUEST,Eliza 08 Apr 11 - 06:18 AM
ChrisJBrady 08 Apr 11 - 07:03 AM
ChrisJBrady 08 Apr 11 - 07:04 AM
GUEST,leeneia 08 Apr 11 - 12:00 PM
DrugCrazed 08 Apr 11 - 12:32 PM

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Subject: BS: Bullying
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 08:07 AM

From Obama to BBC Radio Devon, people are FINALLY starting to talk about this terrible problem. I've been banging on about it for years, and have pretty much suffered bullying because of it...

Anyway, I've just got off the phone from BBC Radio Devon as they were having a talk-in about it this morning. I was on just before 1pm. Many people want, apparently, to see corporate punishment brought back, but that is NOT the answer.

The answer is, imo, to look deep into ourselves, as adults, and ask why this is still being allowed to go on. It's about asking questions about examination stresses, schools and the whole idea of them, TV programmes, books, fashion, shops...EVERYONE who is making a fast buck out of our children and all those who don't care about children, be they the parents or the teachers....

We need to sensitise our children, not de-sensitise them...

If you listen to the BBC Radio Devon interview, I apologise for my shaky voice, but as ever, when something affects me very deeply the tears are brimming in my eyes and in my soul....


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: kendall
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 08:30 AM

As a boy I was bullied until I got fed up and decked the worst of the lot.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 08:34 AM

Corporate punishment? Yeah, I'm all for it. Those bankers and oil barons have got it coming all right...


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 08:37 AM

"As a boy I was bullied until I got fed up and decked the worst of the lot."

Yep me too, Kendall. Funny thing...nobody bothered me after that.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,Patsy
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 09:16 AM

I work in an environment that does not allow bullying in any form luckily or anything that contravenes the Diversity Act, it is such a good feeling that I can arrive every day happy knowing that someone is not going to make life hell for me. But I have experienced the opposite at school, in my early career and from an ex-spouse.

Corporate Punishment at school can't have worked in my experience as far as bullying goes. It made some children more deceitful with their tactics becoming revengeful again towards the victim. The only relief was actually leaving school only to come across another bully later but with this particular girl I bided my time until she herself left to go to another job. After that the rest of my single life got better.

The trouble with bullying it is in so many forms, girl bullying for instance can be hard to tackle and especially in this way by physical punishment as it tends to be bitchy. But however it is tackled in schools today the difference now is because of news coverage and programmes depicting gun and knife culture the schools can't always know how it will all turn out if or when they do tackle it.

The diversity policy works in here and could be used to teach parents and children in the same way followed up by frequent quizzes. The only thing I worry about is that children like to let off steam sometimes and it could get to a situation where they grow up shying away from wanting to confront anyone about anything.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 09:20 AM

Er, is it OK if we call it "corporal...?"


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,999
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 09:25 AM

So far, Shaw, you're the only one who hasn't grasped that. Good of you to catch up.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 09:33 AM

Hellooo?


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,999
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 09:52 AM

Institutionalized corporal punishment doesn't work. We already know that, so going down that path again accomplishes nothing except to have schools and their policies in court for assault.

As with Kendall and Backwoodsman, I handled it myself back in grade 5. Same result as them.

I was strapped in junior high school for being insubordinate (wasn't paying attention). Yeah, that taught me. When Mr _________ finished the five I looked at him and said, "My sister could hit harder than that!" I thought he was gonna have a coronary on the spot.

I think any school that institutionalizes corporal punishment had best be prepared to deal with mom and/or dad, either in court or in person. It's easy to grab a tiger by the tail, but before doing so one would be well advised to have a plan in place for dealing with the tiger's teeth. imo. ymmv.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: kendall
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 09:58 AM

Bullies and wife beaters are cowards at heart.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,HiLo
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 10:22 AM

I believe that bullying is a concept children learn at home...usually as a result of verbal or physical bullying by parents. This does not absolve schools and society from adressing the problem, however, in my experience, parents need anti bullying instruction more than children do. The behaviour must be stopped at the root of the problem. Just a thought.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Backwoodsman
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 10:34 AM

Whilst I dealt with bullies myself, I understand that it's not everyone that's equipped physically or, more importantly has the courage, to do that and risk a beating. It takes serious cojones to face down a tormentor (or usually, a tormentor and his/her sidekicks) and return his treatment.

I also understand that times have changed, and that whereas a fist-fight, a bloody nose and the odd black eye would sort things out back in the day, there seems often to be a danger of weapons being introduced and violence escalating in today's world.

I think the bullying of yesteryear, which was predominantly physical, slapping around, throwing books in the mud, letting bike tyres down sort of stuff has now been replaced by much more sinister stuff - texts, e-mails, social-website abuse and generally underhand, nasty behaviour. Much harder to deal with.

Glad I'm not a kid growing up today. And Kendall's right on the button - bullies and squaw-beaters are cowards and beneath contempt.

IMHO. YMMV.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Jeri
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 10:35 AM

What happens can't always be dealt with by beating someone up. I was bullied for most of my childhood. There were ringleaders, but pretty soon, mostly all of the kids are on board with the bullying. They're either part of it or they're ignoring what goes on.

I was told to ignore them. "Sticks and stones," and all that, but it didn't STOP anything. I learned that doing goofy things would at least get them to stop taunting and start laughing, even if it was at me.

I changed.

Things got better when I got older, but I'd learned some things I don't think I should have had to learn. I didn't trust people, and I didn't really like them either. There were kids who'd reached out a hand, and I was afraid they were doing it to fool me. I believed I had to act differently than my normal self to get along, and THAT stuck with me for most of my adult life. I felt like I was a monster, pretending to be human so the other humans didn't come after me with torches and pitchforks. That's a bit overly dramatic, but you'll get the drift. Every single time I feel hurt, I go back to that.

And there ends today's D.I.Y. therapy session.

You can blame victims, you can blame bullies, but it really is about what ways of interacting are condoned or encouraged. The way these things are or are NOT dealt with can cause more harm or good than the actual bullying. I don't think punishing the bullies would have been effective, and I don't think teaching me to kick everyone's ass would have been effective. If a person is trying to fit in, further alienating others will make things worse. Changing the norm for the group would have worked. Shame would have. Teaching those outside of the core group of bullies that those bullies were wrong would have. Teaching them to stop supporting the bullies would have.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: ChrisJBrady
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 10:54 AM

Please spread the word about this video:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lrJxqvalFxM

Stand Up! - Don't Stand for Homophobic Bullying


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,Eliza
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 11:13 AM

In all my years of teaching, I saw many bullies. In nearly every case, they were at heart very unhappy and miserable individuals, who had suffered neglect, abuse or violence at home. The interesting thing is, many (not all by any means) of their victims were also children who were at a disadvantage in some way, either scruffy, too fat, too thin, odd mannerisms etc. I never had any sympathy with the protagonists, but punished them every time (lines, detention etc.) Just because one is unhappy inside is NOT an excuse to dominate and hurt another. But I did manage (I hope) to distinguish between serious bullying and ordinary playground disagreements and name-calling. The latter should be ignored in the main. I find nowadays that bullying goes on in the adult world. I was bullied in the HMCR enquiries office the other day, for no apparent reason. But the woman concerned was obviously miserable in her job (no excuse!) and didn't look well. Neither did I when I emerged in tears after the 'interview'!


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 11:43 AM

GUEST,999: What was the point of this remark?

"So far, Shaw, you're the only one who hasn't grasped that. Good of you to catch up."

Steve Shaw was, I think, pointing out that corporal punishment had been twice incorrectly referred to as corporate punishment.

And GUEST,999, why don't you get a membership so we can PM you about stuff like this?


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Ebbie
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 11:45 AM

Steve Shaw's line about bankers and oil barons made me laugh; perfect example of 'corporate' bullying.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,999
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 12:01 PM

Check your messages, Mr Dixon.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Sandy Mc Lean
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 01:20 PM

When I was in the early grades in a two room school, with multiple grades in each, I was bullied to the point of terror by a few of the bigger and older kids. I would often come home crying and I still remember my older brother teaching me how to box on our kitchen floor. I learned fast and I grew fast and strong enough to beat the crap out of my tormentors. Perhaps I became a bully then myself because I fancied myself as a bit of a vigilante who would not only step in to defend others but also torment and intimidate those whom I considered to be bullies. By the time I reached my teens I seldom had to fight and I would walk away if I could at all, but both my peers and myself knew I was no coward.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: kendall
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 01:33 PM

It felt good when I decked that asshole, but after wards it didn't and I never felt like doing it for fun.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Lizzie Cornish 1
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 01:37 PM

"Corporate punishment? Yeah, I'm all for it. Those bankers and oil barons have got it coming all right..."

:0)   

Sorry about that folks, although it was worth it for Steve's remark there...Very good, Steve! I was in a real hurry when I posted that earlier.....and....I'd only just managed to stop myself saying "Corporate Bastards!" on air on Fitz's show, so I guess the word was still hanging around.

Jeri, I felt every word you posted above. I'm so sorry you had to lose so much of your younger life to unhappiness of that sort.

It makes my blood boil that this is still not being dealt with in today's world. The effects of bullying can so often last a life-time. The amount of older people who were advocating bringing back corporal punishment shocked me, to be honest...as did those who thought that sorting out the bully with a bloody good thump was all that's needed...Yes, maybe that did work, still does work, but we ain't come far as a species if we have to deal with violence purely through more violent violence, have we?

My lad was bullied, as was my daughter, as was I.   We were all quiet as children and young people and that's not allowed in group situations, basically. If you are different in a noticeable way, then the ones 'higher up' or ...er....'lower down' the chain feel it's their right to bully, exclude, belittle, abuse...whatever it takes to make them feel good and you feel bad.

Being kind to each other is AS important as English, Maths, Science et al....and Music and Arts should be up there on the 'must have' lists too, along with Compassion, Empathy and Dealing with Shiteheads...

Yes, the bullies come from bad backgrounds, more often than not, but if all children were taught from the very beginning that being kind is right, and being unkind is wrong, then maybe the message would get through much more clearly.   

Many parents don't love their children, many teachers don't like children. Many do. It's the ones who don't who are also adding to the problem and who also need to be dealt with.

I was hit across the hand, very hard, with a wooden ruler by my form teacher in Primary School for talking. I was a chatterbox charlie back then, but I barely whispered a word in class. On this occasion he caught me whispering to my friend, literally, whispering...I was called out to the front of the class...made to put my hand out straight, then WHACK!! he went with his ruler.

From that moment I hated him.
From that moment I learned to never trust another teacher again.
From that moment I knew humiliation....and inner rage.
From that moment I knew a powerful sense of right and wrong.

From that moment I knew that any adult who hits a child is shit, although back then, I didn't konw the right word, but I knew he was a bad man.

You wanna stop the bullying? Then start liking the children. Stop incessantly testing them. Stop forcing them to learn things they have no interest in. Stop teaching school in the same way it's been taught since Victorian times....

Let go of all that's gone before and make school a place where every child feels valued, loved, cared for, extraordinarily safe, and knows they're a part, a very important part of a whole caring community, where respect lies in equal parts on both sides of the corridor.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Jim Dixon
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 02:11 PM

I wonder what happens to bullies when they get older?

I wonder what it would be like to have a conversation about bullying with the very people who bullied us when we were young?

I suppose this would have to happen at a high-school reunion. I have never attended one, partly because I live 500 miles away from where I went to school, and partly because I have too many bad memories of those years.

I still have a lot of resentment, not only toward the bullies themselves, but to everyone who failed to stand up for me, which means, everybody.

I remember one of my "friends" saying to me after one incident, "I think you shouldn't have cried."


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: peregrina
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 02:18 PM

Adult/Workplace bullying is also widespread and can be devastating; few employers and managers are willing to address it.
It's not just the targets who suffer.
Studies show that being a bystander in a bullying environment is damaging too.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,Name and addesss withheld
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 02:25 PM

Most of the posts here seem to indicate what I knew already- that the vast majority of people don't know what the word means. Bullying is usually not about physical abuse, any more than rape is about sexuality, though violence certainly is one tool used. The aim of bullies - they are almost always a group- is to achieve dominance by lowering the self- esteem of their victims. The usual tools are ridicule (anything will do, the wrong sort of clothes, interests not shared by the group, difference in appearance no matter how slight, physical disability, interest in school or work), social isolation, calumny (allegations of sexual deviation for example), petty harassment and so on. The aim is often to provoke a physical reaction, so that the victim can be portrayed as the aggressor. So the ability to box, or willingness to "stand up like a man", usually only results in the victim being punished and further stigmatised. The victim's neutral peers usually offer no help, perhaps for fear of becoming a target by association. In school, teachers, and in work managers, will often use the situation to bolster their own authority. For children, parents can be the least sympathetic of the lot, especially if teachers have involved themselves.

To admit to having been bullied opens you to insinuations like the one above, that the victim is a coward, or that you are in some way inadequate.

Those who have not experienced this, or experienced it as one of the bystanders, seem to think that it is a matter of size or age. Think of it as part of a struggle for power- those with the most desire to dominate others use any tool available to that end. You yourselves were probably more or less willingly and wittingly, a participant in that process. As a neutral, you are probably still doing it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Mysha
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 02:29 PM

Hi,

Outsider view (See the little speck east of the North and Southern Seas, typing at a keyboard in a lonely apartment building?):

I'm one of the don't-fits. At school there was name-calling, there was mocking, there was ignoring.

There never was bullying.

When I encountered the word in an English book, I had to look it up because from the context it didn't make sense. Basically the whole context there didn't make sense. Then the children were hit with a ruler or a rod by a teacher: the book became more and more incomprehensible, except that there seemed to be a method to the madness: They all were violent.

When I caught two ferries and went to England, three years ago, I had the new experiences of:
* Police helicopters with search lights hovering loudly overhead at night
* Alarms and sirens literally every day, even on days where I cycled through the country-side the whole day.
* City neighbourhoods so threatening in their lack of liveliness that I wasn't sure I'd safely cycle out at the other end.

I still don't know, and it's a limited view, but though most British I came into contact with were very friendly, I don't think the problem is with the behaviour of individuals.

Bye,
                                                                Mysha


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: maple_leaf_boy
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 02:42 PM

In N.S., a child was bullied for wearing pink. Two students started a
"Pink Day" anti-bullying campaign. This was a few years back. It became a widespread day. The premier made the second Thursday of the
academic year an official stand up to bullying day. There is still more to be done. Recently, there were a few kids in N.S. who took their own lives due to bullying. They were bullied not only at school, but online as well. "Formspring" is a common network where it takes place.

I know about one child who was picked on would react to the antagonists,
and would get in trouble. The teachers wouldn't punish the other kids.
They knew that he was egged on, but they refused to punish his tormenters, and they demonized him. This was when I was in grade school.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: peregrina
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 02:48 PM

Very common dynamic, blaming the victim, evident in peoples' reactions to all kinds of abuse.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Little Hawk
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 02:56 PM

There are 2 ways to look at bullying.

1. The bully as victim - The people who become bullies are in pain, have usually been bullied themselves by someone (often a parent), and are looking to get even for it by bullying someone else.

2. The bully as perpetrator - The people who engage in bullying are looking for a way to make themselves feel dominant and powerful by destroying someone's else's self-esteem. They get a charge out of humiliating other people. They enjoy inflicting humiliation.

Either viewpoint is valid, and both will often apply to the same bully.

I was mainly aware of the number 2 example when I got bullied a lot back in school. I became somewhat aware of the number 1 example after awhile too, but it didn't help much. ;-) I know of no sure way to stop bullies except to stand up to them when they try it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,Eliza
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 03:09 PM

Little Hawk, I agree that the best way is to stand up to the bully, but that's often the very thing the victim cannot do, as they are non-dominant by nature and weaker physically. I was bullied as a little girl in infant school. I was very shy and extremely thin, and merely tried to become invisible. I spent playtime hiding behind groups of other children. If someone had told me to "Stand up for yourself" I could never have done it! Luckily, I was 'promoted' a year early to Junior School, and escaped the little beast.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Jeri
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 03:50 PM

For better or worse, my history has made me who I am. It's made me overly sensitive to some things and very strong in some areas. I don't trust people easily, but I also see people and look for that vulnerable little kid we all still have somewhere inside us.

I know I've told the story before, but...
One of my bullies was a neighborhood bully, not a school bully. Kids from the elementary school would get off the bus and walk as far as a mile (that was me) home. This kid was older and bigger than all the other kids on my street, and he used to pick on all of us. I mostly didn't say anything, but my parents got the story out of me. They asked why I didn't fight back, and I told them I didn't think I was supposed to fight, that I would get into trouble. Dad & Mom agreed that, while I shouldn't start a fight, it was OK to fight back to stop one.

One time, walking home from school, he started in. I ran into a neighbor's yard, with him chasing me, and then realized what I was doing and stopped. I turned around, and he laughed at me and said something like "You better run, or I'll hit you."

I said, "Go ahead" and stood there. I would have let him too, if only so I could clock him. He took a swing (with an open hand) and... missed. I said "Try again." He missed again. Then, I stepped forward, and with both hands, shoved him, whereupon he fell on his sit-upon. He actually STAYED there, and I said, "No more!" and walked away.

He never bothered me again, and when I walked home from school, I made sure he didn't pick on the smaller kids.

Now, as far as what makes kids bullies, I don't agree there has to be something wrong at home or with them. Everybody likes to feel accepted and important, and bullies get those things through dominating other kids. I lost touch with him after high school, buthe person in this anecdote of mine grew up to be a good guy, and was someone I ended up respecting.

I believe kids bully because they can.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Little Hawk
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 04:09 PM

Oh, I understand perfectly, Eliza. I was the same type of kid you were, very small and thin and shy. I also tried to become "invisible" and only escaped, finally, by reaching the age where I could leave school behind and join the world of the adults....thank God!

Looking back on it all with hindsight, I realize that the only thing one can do to end childhood bullying is to stand up against it, but like you, I was not well equipped physically or psychologically to do that, so it simply didn't seem to be a viable option.

My father, in fact, kept telling me "Punch him in the nose.", but it was not advice I could possibly imagine acting on. It was the kind of thing that always worked for my father, because he was an aggressive, tall, strong, A-type personality, a man who wasn't afraid of anything (except that someone might laugh at him). He never had the slightest hesitation about getting tough with people, but he and I were about as opposite in nature as two people could possibly be. I'm a "thinker" (and a negotiator...I seek harmony and mutual agreement). He was a "doer" (man of action...seeks victory). Both qualities are worth having, the "thinker" and the "doer" but imagine what you could do with an equal measure of both! ;-)


****

Good point, Jeri. Yeah, a lot of kids bully simply because they can. You see that with armed nations too. And governments. And bosses. And border officials. And some police, unfortunately. And even dogs and cats, as far as that goes...


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Penny S.
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 04:10 PM

I hate to have to say this, but I have known a woman bullied in her sheltered housing by other inmates who thought she shouldn't be there, and a local warden to my new home said that it isn't unusual. Nice thing to look forward to.

It is the women who perpetrate this stuff. Female relational bullying it is called. I've not come across an answer while teaching. Unlike the male bully (and persistent Flashman, Steerforth, Malfoy bullies are rare, while many boys may bully sometimes) children want to be in the in group of the female bully. She may be admired, as well as "attracting" girls who don't want to be the victim next week. I very much doubt if the parents would recognise that their little princess is anything but. I have heard that in secondary schools teachers will not oppose the bullying because if they do, the ring leader will turn her gang to disrupt the class.

Once in work and adulthood, her habits get fixed, and so on to age... she needs to be dealt with in school, and I haven't the foggiest idea how.

Penny


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,Eliza
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 06:01 PM

LittleHawk, my father was just the same as yours, very forceful and strong-minded, also robust physically. I think people like that find it hard to comprehend a victim's point of view. You're right (again) that the two personalities have value, and if one could acquire the other, mountains could be moved! It's interesting to contemplate (if one could actually choose) which personality one would prefer to have. I feel I'd still be the negotiator and thinker, as I value highly kindness and empathy. I wouldn't feel comfortable in the powerful position of a dominant leader type. I also like to use my brain and intelligence to solve problems, rather than overpower the opponent by sheer force of character. Which would you choose?


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Little Hawk
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 06:10 PM

I'd like a judicious combination of the two: strength, kindness, courage, intelligence, and empathy combined. If I have to pick between being me or being my father, though, I'd choose to be me.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,Eliza
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 06:20 PM

I wonder if there is such a thing as a 'born victim'? Some of my pupils in the past seemed to 'attract' bullying. I even had a girl pupil who was moved to another school because of her distress, and she was promptly bullied there as well, poor child. I'm NOT saying it was her fault, there's no excuse for it, but some types just seem to become a target automatically. Yet I've also seen little weaklings with no apparent attractive qualities become quite dominant and well-respected by their peers. What IS it that provokes this reaction? I even have a cat ('Murphy') who is bullied by the others. He's strong and fit, but he is fearful of the other two, one of which is his brother. Is there something genetic or primitive going on, which the thin veneer of civilised behaviour doesn't control? If so, how do we combat it?


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,Name and address withheld
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 06:55 PM

Born victim, eh? Just the sort of excuse the perpetrators, and the collaborators, want. It's not my fault, it's theirs, they are BORN VICTIMS.

LH- this is yet another thing you don't understand. Stay out.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Bill D
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 07:10 PM

My one serious interaction with a bully was, in the end, fun..

I walked home from 6th grade in the same general direction of two of the most popular & 'cool' guys in class... and Billy the Bully also.

Billy was a spoiled 'rich' kid who had been in military school for awhile. On 2-3 occasions the tried to provoke me about something... I can't remember what. I was not a fighter, and was a skinny little kid who had just moved there. The two 'cool' guys didn't bother me...I think I barely registered on their radar....but Billy seemed to think he could gain some sort of status if he... ummm.. picked a fight with me and/or pushed me around.

   Finally one day, about a block from school, we were all 'together' and he began harassing me and calling me names while the others watched in amusement ....just generally trying to start something that HE would finish. What he didn't know was that I often wrestled with my own brother in semi-serious tussles.
So.... Billy finally saw that I wasn't gonna respond to dares and words, and he kinda grabbed/pushed at me. I just shoved my right arm under his left, behind his neck & shoulders, and with a sort of 'half-nelson' twist, pushed and twisted until he was down in the grass on his face with me on top and his left arm shoved up HIGH...like I learned with my brother.

    He yelled.."Mama!"..... and I got up and walked away while the guys grinned. Funny... I never had another bit of trouble with 'ol Billy.

Too bad others who were bullied never had my luck and 'practice' wrestling....
I think every school year up to high school should begin with a mandatory session where the school administrators spell out what bullying is, and make it clear that it will NOT be tolerated.......then follow up.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,Eliza
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 07:12 PM

Guest, if you are addressing me, I actually wrote 'I'm NOT saying it was her fault, there's no excuse for it'. But in my very long experience of children, I have often seen individuals who appear to be picked on at every turn. I merely ask for suggestions as to why this should be. And why are you attacking LittleHawk? In what way does he 'not understand'? I personally find his postings to be considered, thoughtful and VERY understanding. He says himself he was bullied at school, so he has every right IMO to comment.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Little Hawk
Date: 07 Apr 11 - 11:29 PM

Yeah, sure some kids attract bullies...I've seen that over and over again. I was one of those kids. They attract bullies merely because they appear to be vulnerable, and that's what a bully is looking for, someone who's vulnerable.

Even in young adult life I drew some attention from bully types, because I was not an aggressive person, I was also not much for conforming to the styles of the time, therefore I tended to attract attention from certain toxic personalities who were looking for someone to persecute.

The same thing happens with animals, on a bit simpler level, and I've seen it with cats, dogs, and when I took care of a herd of goats. Certain more pacifisic types got victimized by the dominant animals. It also happens in mental institutions as well as in schools, and it's something the staff in those instituions must make stringent efforts to control. I've witnessed that too. The bullies will usually make their move when there's no staff around, and they wait for the opportunity to do so.

This in no way makes any kind of excuse for the perpetrators or the collaborators. In fact, it makes them all the much guiltier for their bullying behaviour in my opinion...or their tacit support of it.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: Little Hawk
Date: 08 Apr 11 - 12:03 AM

By the way, nameless guest, I agree with everything you said in your post of 07 Apr 11 - 02:25 PM


So if I "don't understand" this subject...I guess you must not either. ;-) Hmm?

Yes, it's mostly about dominance...and I personally experienced just the sort of bullying you describe in your lengthy post.

You said: "The aim of bullies - they are almost always a group- is to achieve dominance by lowering the self- esteem of their victims. The usual tools are ridicule (anything will do, the wrong sort of clothes, interests not shared by the group, difference in appearance no matter how slight, physical disability, interest in school or work), social isolation, calumny (allegations of sexual deviation for example), petty harassment and so on. The aim is often to provoke a physical reaction, so that the victim can be portrayed as the aggressor. So the ability to box, or willingness to "stand up like a man", usually only results in the victim being punished and further stigmatised. The victim's neutral peers usually offer no help, perhaps for fear of becoming a target by association. In school, teachers, and in work managers, will often use the situation to bolster their own authority. For children, parents can be the least sympathetic of the lot, especially if teachers have involved themselves.

To admit to having been bullied opens you to insinuations like the one above, that the victim is a coward, or that you are in some way inadequate.

Those who have not experienced this, or experienced it as one of the bystanders, seem to think that it is a matter of size or age. Think of it as part of a struggle for power- those with the most desire to dominate others use any tool available to that end. You yourselves were probably more or less willingly and wittingly, a participant in that process. As a neutral, you are probably still doing it.


Righto. Yes. I agree 100% with all of the above, just as you said it.

I experienced a great deal of ridicule for "the wrong clothes", "interests not shared by the group", "differences in appearance no matter how slight", being a foreigner, and "interest in my schoolwork". I was ridiculed for being "a brain", because I got very good marks. It was 100% clear that I was not going to respond to that ridicule with any form of violence, so they didn't take that route with me...but there was a tall red-haired kid who was constantly harassed and pushed around with the intention of provoking him to violence. And he often lost his temper and fought back, and it did him no good whatsoever, because he wasn't a very good fighter and people were ganging up on him. As you say, bullies generally operate as a group.

It's also not necessarily a case of physical size or age. It's more a case of which group you hang out with, at least in school. If you become part of a group of bullies, then they all support each other when they pick a target. I've seen small kids who got bullied. I've seen big kids who got bullied. The main reason they got bullied was that some group labelled them as "outsiders", therefore a good target.

I was a total outsider, wasn't even from the same country, had no interest in belonging to an in-group whatsoever, and had totally different interests in practically everything from most of the kids in my school.

The fact that I wasn't inclined to fight put me in a weak position...but it also paradoxically kept me from getting beat up. They never beat me up, just stuck to ridicule and verbal stuff.

They were enjoying their dominance. In the case of the red-haired kid, he had an even rougher time than I did, and his tendency to flar up and fight back did him no good at all. I truly pitied that kid. School was just one long hell for him.

Why did they pick on him? Well...the red hair had something to do with it. His facial features may have had something to do with it. (he looked sort of like Charlie Brown...but taller) He carried a BRIEFCASE!!!!! I am not joking when I say that if you carried a briefcase in Junior High and High School you were utterly doomed to be picked on constantly. Only 2 kids I ever knew carried briefcases and they were the most picked on 2 kids in the entire school.

They were perceived as different. So was I. And that's about all it takes to attract bullies.

A new kid will sometimes get picked on too...after the local bullies and their collaborators have spent a short time figuring out whether to accept them or not.

One new kid arrived, and his name was Francis Basset. Both his names were a great excuse for picking on him, and he was new. However, he was also one tough character...looked a lot like a young Steve McQueen, and he virtually never smiled. There was a taut and humorless air about him.

One of the local assholes decided to make a few jokes at Francis' expense shortly after his arrival at the school, and Francis punched him in the stomach. One really fast straight punch. Hard. And that was all it took. They didn't bother him after that. He proved to be good at sports too, which is a big plus in school. So Francis got quietly accepted by the "bad boys" after that.

Frances was not a particularly nice person. Like I say, I hardly ever saw him smile. I got the impression he'd grown up under a hard father, but who knows? At any rate, he was not what I'd call a bully, just someone who stayed in his own space and didn't much want anyone in it either. He could've worked his way up the bully chain, but he didn't seem to really give a damn one way or the other.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: JennieG
Date: 08 Apr 11 - 12:07 AM

Much is being said these days about bullying in childhood and teen-hood (is there such a word? there ought to be) but bullying by adults, to other adults, is just as prevalent if not more so. Ten years ago I left a job because of persistent bullying by my supervisor. He was one of those bullies who constantly chip away at the self-esteem of others, and because of the culture of that workplace (a Catholic parochial school) I, a non-Catholic and a female to boot, was unable to change anything. I so dreaded going to work that one day on my daily commute I was thinking how easy it would be to pull the steering wheel over and drive under the large truck that was in the next lane....that's when I knew the time had come to leave.

Then of course there are parents who bully their own children, who use their position as parents and adults to treat their children in a way they would never treat a fellow adult. Not only teachers bully children.

All I am going to say is, I was glad I left childhood behind.

Cheers
JennieG


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,mg
Date: 08 Apr 11 - 12:53 AM

As to girl bullying..call them on it and describe the behavior to the whole student body and give it a name. And say that it is bullying and it will not be tolerated and furthermore you will be watching for it. Pass out some cards or something with checkpoints on how to recognize it. Have kids make posters and display them. Gather the cheerleaders of the school and tell them the mental health of the school is going to be partially at least determined by their behavior and that they are to set a good example or you will yank their program. If cheerleaders are bullies, don't tolerate it, because they are usually the chief girls in a school. Have a social worker come in and talk to classes or the student body about this behavior that does not leave bruises but is so damaging. Do not let girls get away with stuff. Let parents know they are to watch the behavior of their girls toward other girls and not let them fly under the radar. mg


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,Patsy
Date: 08 Apr 11 - 03:21 AM

Steve I realise what you meant, I meant to say 'corporal' it was a slip of the finger and trying really hard to 'look' like I was working LOL. Or perhaps as Lizzie says corporate bullying as in bankers is quite apt today. It is another form of underlying bullying as is any sales pitch to try to bamboozle the customer with figures and different offers when all you really had in mind was check that the account was going well.

When my youngest son was at school through the 80s and beginning of the 90s it was the culture of spending silly money on trainers and designer clothes, some brands are still expensive now but then children were asking to have the best trendy brands with flashing heels and suchlike and he went through a phase of sneering at other children wearing cheaper brands. He was grounded to make him think about the things that he said but with peer pressure outside it probably didn't change his way of thinking. Now he is older he doesn't regard these things as important at all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: The Fooles Troupe
Date: 08 Apr 11 - 04:48 AM

Teenagers bully flood victim


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: ChrisJBrady
Date: 08 Apr 11 - 05:37 AM

I used to work for a major (flag carrier) airline in i.t. support at Heathrow. For all the years I was there - 24+ - there was a blame culture that emanated from the top down. I was at grass roots level so got the lot.

In my last year before retirement I was bullied by 12 peers (one a manager) also in i.t. support who set up an illegal bulletin board (on Lotus Notes) on the Intranet. They were all ardent football supporters - bored and with too much time to waste. On this they posted photos of other office staff in deliberately contrived situations, and posted numerous comments about their peers and management. Some pictures were of a sexual nature. The comments included personal attacks on individuals including myself. When I heard about this I tricked one of them - who was actually somewhat appalled at what was going on - into sending me a copy of the LN database. I immediately reported them. A disciplinary investigation was held - which lasted 6-months. Meanwhile I didn't know whom I could trust and I saw some of them on a daily basis - they usually changed direction rather than walk past me. Eventually they were disciplined and some threatened with dismissal - but this never happened. Six of them had to write me letters of apology - which remain unopened and unread to this day. However the stress of all of this caused me to lose all of my hair - and unlike Gail Porter it ain't growing back. I never got any compensation. So when early retirement was offered - along with 500 others - we all took the pension and ran. I've never looked back.

One of the other bullying episodes was from a grossly over-weight male project leader, who thought he knew everything about i.t. but actually didn't know anything at all. He's already been thrown out of the Engineering department. Talk about throwing his weight around - literally. But on a number of issues I had to challenge his ideas because what he wanted us to do was quite clearly incorrect and bad for our customers (in Finance). On one occasion he wrote me a 12 page performance review which was offensive and full of emotional diatribe. This caused my rating (and salary to go down). I had to go to the Union to get it withdrawn. Which they achieved and my rating was restored - but he never forgot nor forgave.

Towards the end I also had a woman manager who again made my life hell. She was unmarried and frustrated as hell. She used to disappear on Fridays and Mondays to 'work at home.' But when we looked into her online diary she actually flew to/from Manchester. The 'work at home' was actually one long weekend after another. She really laid into me once for missing a deadline for producing some insignificant s/w app. Not my fault - she had given me programming work I had not been trained for. Anyway she really laid it on the line how disappointed she was at the missed deadline. It was only afterwards when I asked the customers (in Finance) about it when they told me that the project had actually been cancelled a few weeks before - which she had known about but hadn't bothered to tell me.

Incidentally cabin crew are going on strike again soon. With such bullying management I'm not surprised.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,Eliza
Date: 08 Apr 11 - 06:18 AM

CJB, I feel enormous sympathy for you, such treatment can cause serious health problems and lasting psychological damage. You must feel dreadfully bitter, and I can only admire you for staying so long and for taking steps to bring the perpetrators to the attention of the authorities, albeit without an awful lot of success or redress by the sound of it. I'm so glad you can say, "I've never looked back." I do hope you are enjoying life now and in some sense can put those miserable times behind you (not easy, I'm sure) Best wishes for your future serenity, Eliza.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: ChrisJBrady
Date: 08 Apr 11 - 07:03 AM

Hi Eliza - many thanks for your post. I could go on and on with more stories to tell. But then people say well why did you stay? - the simple answer is for the pension and also because despite the blame culture there were a heck of a lot of good folk there too - and I did get an award for excellence from my (internal) customers a few years back!! They appreciated my work even if my own management didn't.

But another lady was badly bullied out of the same company, and then set up a website against them:

http://www.jfo.org.uk/support/baba/

====


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: ChrisJBrady
Date: 08 Apr 11 - 07:04 AM

Actually JFO (Just Fight On) is a great organisation.

http://www.jfo.org.uk/

There are also a number of Yahoo Groups about Bullying Support that folks here might be interested in:

http://finance.groups.yahoo.com/group/bullyonline/

Description

The BullyOnline forum was formed in 2000 by the late Dr Tim Field, sharing his unique and extensive experience of casework, his UK National Workplace Bullying Advice Line, and web site
Bully OnLine

It remains the world's leading forum on tackling workplace bullying, and can provide validation and re-empowerment for those who have suffered work abuse or bullying anywhere.

The forum's main focus is to identify, expose and deal with the serial bully who Tim realised is a common factor in most cases of workplace bullying. He found that denial of the existence of a serial bully is the most common cause of unsatisfactory outcomes where bullying is reported.

The group discusses the experience of bullying, harassment and abuse, and the effect on health through stress.

And there is:

http://health.groups.yahoo.com/group/bullying-support/

Description

This group is has been created by
http://www.bullying.org. This list will be a communication tool for those who wish to discuss the issue of bullying.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: GUEST,leeneia
Date: 08 Apr 11 - 12:00 PM

I read somewhere that a bullying child is the child of a parent that is totally inconsistent.

Makes sense. What kind of parent is TOTALLY inconsistent? A dysfunctional parent, who might be a drunkard, a druggie or insane. Whatever the cause, the parent's actions and reactions are a complete mystery. They can also be frightening or infuriating.

The bully has a mind full of fear, confusion, anger and the desire to control something, anything. That something is most likely to be a younger, weaker child. Add to that that he follows his parent's exmaple, alternately being oblivious to injustice and losing control of himself, and the result is misery for all.


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Subject: RE: BS: Bullying
From: DrugCrazed
Date: 08 Apr 11 - 12:32 PM

I know that my personality is changed by what happened to me at primary school. I was never the cool kid, and even now I won't be.

I'm now 19 and 9 years away from those who made me hate being at school. I got used to being on my own, and even now there are times I'd rather not leave but just sit in and ignore the world.

I worked out a defence mechanism, which was self depreciation. Friends have commented on it and said "You're too good at that. You really oughta stop". But I don't. If I took the insult and made it my own why would anyone use it against me? My theory hasn't been proven wrong yet.


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