Wednesday 17 August 2011

Bully for you

A you tube video of Asyraf Haziq - the Malaysian student who was mugged following an attack that left him with a broken jaw - became news last week. I don't need to see people being cruel to know that it happens and to be shocked by it. What followed was a flood of sympathy and support for him as the innocent in the chaos of rioting who became caught up in events that he had no involvement in. It made me angry and it left me feeling sick about the mentality of those who not only beat him up initially, but those who then robbed him. It wasn't just criminal, it was old fashioned bullying. 

Then yesterday there was a news report claiming that a third of teachers have been bullied online by parents using facebook. Cyberbullying - as it's being called - is just the most recent development in an age old form of abuse that I've recently had a smidgen of experience of. Whether at school or at work or even at home being bullied has at various times just been a part of my everyday life. After a while it's just how life is and goes some way to explaining why I get so angry about what I see as injustice and unfairness.

It fascinates me what drives some to bully and others to be the ones who are bullied. I've often heard people say that bullies are victims themselves. I'm afraid I can't concur. As someone who has been on the receiving end of bullying at many different stages in life I don't think I've visited it on others as a result. It does make me wonder if some of us are predisposed to being bullied either by virtue of what we look like or how we respond to bullies. I can't recall a time when I've actually confronted a bully, so maybe that and my desperation to be liked makes it easy for them ? 

Of course this doesn't explain why pick on someone who is already bleeding or a person who is doing their job and you just don't like them or what they say. I do wonder what became of the girls who bullied me at school. Did walking behind me in the playground and pushing me or stealing my school bag lead to a fulfilling adult life or are they as pointless now as they were back then ? It's probably all coming back to me because I'm traumatised at the thought of sending my son to a nursery. I know that this is the beginning of leaving him to find his way with other children and he has to learn to be independent and to stand up for himself. I just wish that I didn't keep finding evidence the people can be really nasty and they don't need a reason. 

1 comment:

  1. Victims sometimes attract further victimisation rather than help - because they're obviously already weakened, easier prey. One hears terrible stories along these lines.
    As for nursery/school etc - if you hear he's had a brick in the face, don't panic, it was probably just duplo. But more seriously - the best defence is building up confidence and resilience in them from early on.