Fear, Shame and Bullying

When I was a younger child, I definitely took my fair share of being picked on by various groups of people. I didn’t have the latest and greatest clothes, my glasses were very thick and being one of the smart students definitely didn’t endear yourself to everyone. But I did my best to think fast on my feet to not let people get the best of me- at least in the public eye. I may have shed a few tears in private, wondering if I would ever lead a life free of ridicule, and it amazes me today that bullying seems to have gone into a more dangerous level with the internet and videos flying about capturing the hateful acts.

I learned that fear and shame fuel bullying. If someone has that much intensity to their personality to make your life miserable, then they clearly have low self-esteem issues and aren’t confident in facing themselves head on. I didn’t have to prove my self-worth to anyone- I know I’m a worthwhile person and have a lot of great traits that make people want to be around me.

I worry about bullying with my two daughters- not that they would do this towards others but that they may fall victim to others. It’s already hard enough that kids will use anything they find as different to separate you from your peers, I just want both of my daughters to know how special, wonderful and talented they are.

I watched an episode today on the Dr. Phil show regarding bullying and girls, and it made me very sad that this continues so prevalently today, to the point where some girls think about killing themselves over the torment and pain. What about attacking people in a 10 against 1 effort makes you feel so much better than the rest of the world? Is this how you are going to face your fears when you have to tackle an issue solely on your own?

It’s probably why I never had one particular social clique growing up, and I developed my own friends based on my own interests. Metal music spoke to my anger, my social awkwardness and channeled that energy in another direction- a healthier one than taking it out on other humans. Bowling gave me a sport outlet, something I could find new friends with and also become better at on an individual day to day basis. Writing gives me the chance to empty my mind and soul, pull thoughts together and is as natural to me today as breathing.

When you see someone isolated because of fear and shame, give that person an ear and an offer to listen. We all want to be understood and feel important in this crazy world we live in. Remember a time when someone was able to pick you up when you were feeling scared, sad or angry, and pass it forward to another. Bullying has no place in the human race. We are hear to love and honor our fellow humans- not push them down in the dirt to boost up others.

Have a safe and happy holiday season everyone!

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