Anyone who has ever experienced bullying knows how devastating it can be. It’s hurtful by definition, and bullying can make you feel afraid, depressed, angry, undermined and lots of other negative emotions. Bullying takes many forms, including relational, verbal or physical, but the results are the same: your made to feel helpless, ashamed, and that the bullying is somehow your own fault.
Bullying is never, ever, the fault of the victim. Bullies may target your social standing or your physical appearance, but that’s not what it is actually about. Bullies do what they do for deeper reasons – reasons that reflect who they are as a person, not who you are.
Here are five of the real reasons people bully others:
1. They are jealous of others
2. They want to feel popular
3. They want to look or feel powerful or tough
4. They want to escape their own problems and issues
5. They are being bullied themselves
The most important thing to take away from that list is that none of those reasons have anything to do with you — the list doesn’t include your appearance, your social standing, your sexual orientation, your religion, your race — none of it.
Remember then, next time you are faced with a bully, that it is not your fault. You should never be ashamed of what makes you “you.” Keep that list of real reasons people bully in mind, and know that you are more than the message you hear from them.