What doesn’t kill you….
A couple of days ago I came across *this* blogpost from Claudia from Nailing This. Her blogpost affected me greatly because she told her personal story about bullying and I can very much relate.
She made a list of Bloggers Against Bullying and you had to write something about it, so I decided to do that the first chance I had to really sit down for it, so here we go…
I also had to include something purple in it (most nail bloggers do a purple mani) but I don’t have any looks with purple waiting.
So here’s a purple frog. 😀
If you don’t care for a personal rant on bullying and my story about it then skip this, no makeup what so ever was involved in making this blogpost.
I got bullied from about the age of 10 until about 16 or 17 when I went to a different school to study. I’m not going to get into the details of all the things that happened but I can tell you it has affected every single part of my life. What bullies usually don’t realise is that it’s not just that incident right there and then. It doesn’t stop after you get out of that situation: it creeps under your skin, get’s a grip of who you are and how you see the world. I don’t know if this is the way it works for everybody but when I speak for myself: it still affects me almost every day.
I noticed right after I walked into my new school that I never, ever wanted to get bullied again. This new school was a great opportunity for that. I opened the door, met my new classmates and not for one minute hesitated to open my big mouth and metaphorically “give ’em hell”. From that moment on I was going to speak up and not let anybody get in my way again, that was my resolution.
It worked. I didn’t get teased, bullied or anything like that again but I also realise now that with my big mouth and “f*** u all” attitude, I was just repressing loads and loads of fear. And I think to some extent I still am.
That’s what I mean when I say that bullying creeps under your skin. I can tell you that those experiences from 15 to 20 years ago still scare me from time to time. I used to have major issues with being vulnerable and I trusted very few people, and I still have some issues with that today. I get very insecure in big groups of people, especially if they’re strangers and even the people closest to me get “shut out” every once in a while, simply because shutting people out and being on my own feels more natural to me than being vulnerable and taking the risk of getting crushed all over again.
Of course a lot of it also fades away a bit with time and the people around me helped me a lot to get over those feelings of fear, especially my love. It can not have always been easy, can you imagine getting shut out by one of the most important people in your life? He helped me so much and it got us so close that we can practically read each others minds these days, lol.
But there’s still a wall built around me, I don’t think people that have been bullied ever really let their guard down entirely, or is that just me?
I wish people that bullied others knew that, could actually experience what it’s like to be scared half of the time. Do you think they would still bully and harass others if they knew what it did to them? I think some will probably not care at all about what they’re doing to others and some of them will actually stop. I sometimes wonder if my bullies understand what they did. Would it do any good to tell them if I could? Honestly, I don’t know the answer. On one hand it would maybe give me great relief to just say it in someones face. On the other hand, what good does it do? I’ve worked very long and hard to get passed it, why get all those feelings stirred up again?
Bullying doesn’t just happen among kids, “grown ups” (and I use that term loosely) do it too and I’ve seen a lot of it in the blogging community. I think that’s actually what got this whole thing started. It’s so sad when people try to make themselves feel better on behalf of others. Think! Simply think about what you’re saying or typing before you let it out. I’ve seen so many hurtful comments on Facebook, blogs and Youtube that sometimes I just shut my computer off, I don’t want to have anything to do with that stuff. It’s rude, painful and completely unnessecary. But shutting my computer off doesn’t make the problem go away. And that’s what this initiative is about: actually doing something about it, calling people on their behaviour and not letting it go because you don’tt want to see it.
I don’t think there is a living soul on this planet that has always in every situation been kind and caring to others. I myself have said and done things in the past that were hurtful to others, stuff I cringe at now that I look back at it, even. Sure, I’m only human and we humans tend to be a bit complexe like that. We want to do good but the stuff we actually do isn’t always just good, sometimes even far from it. And I personally think you don’t have to be cute and sweet and sugarcoat everything you say, please, that’s just creepy. Maybe it would help if everybody, also online, just treated the other person the way they want to be treated themselves? That would be awesome. The realist in me also tends to think it’s something that would probably work in a perfect world but we have to make do with the world that we live in right here and now, flaws and all. But even if we can make one person think and stop their harassment, in real life or online, isn’t that just worth it? So don’t look away when someone, wether it’s in real life or online, is bullying or harassing someone. Speak up. Sometimes it’s such a small gesture to just address someones rudeness, but to the victim it means the world to feel supported by someone else.
To end this rant, I just want to thank Claudia for bringing Bloggers Against Hate and Bullying to my attention and I want to thank Amanda Landish, who apparently started it all, for gathering a group of 240 (!!!!) bloggers that stand agains hate and bullying, so awesome that so many people contributed to this! I don’t know if this rant makes any impact on anybody but I think Bloggers Against Hate and Bullying is fantastic. Maybe more people realise that bullying in any form, in real life or online, is a huge problem and should never be ignored. Stand up against it because if you don’t, why would anybody else bother?
To those that still struggle with being bullied or the aftershock of being bullied: don’t take it with you to the rest of your life. It’s a battle to get rid of those feelings but I’m sure you can do it and it’s sooooo worth it. You don’t want those asswipes to influence your entire life, right? And it will get better, really.
Please check out Claudia’s blogpost about No h8 and if you’re interested to see what other bloggers wrote about this subject or made in the form of a mani or something like that to contribute, then scroll to the bottom of her blogpost and you can see the entire list and click away.
To end on a lighter, more fun note: lolcats!! Because we all need to laugh. Especially if you’ve been reading up to now (respect!! That was one long rant, wasn’t it? 😉 ) instead of just scrolling through in search for pictures. Either way, hope it brings a smile to your face.