When your former bully becomes a psychologist

The subject of this post is exactly what the title say.

Today I discovered that none other than Regina, the girl who tortured me and initially turned the rest of our peers against me, is now working as a psychologist.

When I initially saw her name, and that she indeed is a certified psychologist, I laughed. High enough to probably scare my neighbours.

Not only that, but I found an article she had written, about low self esteem and how it affect your sense of self worth.

I couldn’t stop sniggering.

But, even though I think the lack of self reflection is incredibly funny, a part of me is concerned.

People come to her for help and guidance. Vulnerable people. And she knows how to seek out the spot that is softest and impossible to defend and to drive the knife home. She has had a knack for it from at least the age of 8.

I know, I was there.

I sincerely hope she doesn’t use her position of power to harm anyone, like she loved to do in the past. But I wouldn’t be the least surprised if she did.

Because she is a bully. Bullies don’t change.

No resources

When a child is singled out by bullies, the decent into total isolation is no different than abuse among adults:

It begins with remarks and gossiping behind the victim’s back, to destroy the victim’s confidence and their trust in their own senses.

By diminishing the victim’s worth, in their own eyes as well as their surroundings, the bullies prepare for more heavy abuse later on.

This is done partly to make sure no one will react: If everybody already thinks the victim is worthless and that they deserve the abuse, no one will intervene. But it is also to make sure the victim will not retaliate: By breaking them down emotionally, until they are nothing but an empty shell, there will be no resistance. And the abusers will have their punching bag for as long as they pleases.

Of course, this is also done to make sure the victim is completely isolated. Broken down, with no allies, there are literary no one to stop them. Just what these sick people wants.

Then, after having secured their position, they move in for the kill.

In an endless stream of insults, snide remarks, gossiping, and sometimes violence, they live out their sadistic pleasures, with no guilt or fear of repercussions.

I will say however, there is one very important difference between bullying among children and, lets say, workplace bullying. It is, as I’ve previously mentioned, the ability to speak out.

Thanks to websites like Glassdoor or Indeed, employees who have suffered under abusive and bullying superiors now have the opportunity to speak out. And thanks to these platforms they are often listened to.

This past summer I was unfortunate enough to have a short gig at an absolute awful company, where the manager and supervisor were not suited for their positions in any shape or form. I did read the reviews on Glassdoor before I took the job, and they were scorching, but like the fool I am I thought they were greatly exhagerated.

The fact there were over 50 1-star reviews for this one company, accumulated in only 8 months, should have told me to run as fast as I could, but like I said, I couldn’t believe it was that bad.

To cut a long story very short, it turned out the Glassdoor reviews were completely justified. I left with hatred in my heart and with a thirst for revenge.

I made sure to complain to HR, the agency that recruited me, as well as posting my own stinging reviews on Glassdoor and Indeed, detailing exactly what it was like working there and why nobody else should.

My review received a double digit number of «Useful» clicks, which is highly unusual, and only prove there were many out there who felt the same.

And now, they are stuck with unqualified and unskilled worked, because no professional will consider them after reading the reviews.

It belongs to the story that my shitty supervisor suddenly got «promoted» to a back-office position after my complaint, where they would have no power over any other employee. A small victory, I guess.

My point is, as an adult you have certain resorces. You can inflict damage to those who wronged you, even if it only inconvenience them. As a child, you have zero urses

 

Call it by its rightful name

«It is just something kids do. It doesn’t mean anything.»

All victims of bullying have heard a variant of this frase.

Yes, of course it is. It’s just a little game kids play with each other. If you carry scars from the abuse you suffered for years, decades – the rest of your life – you are the problem.

Isn’t it so?

Instead of redusing «bullying» to just a «game», let us start referring to it for what it really is:

Harassment. Assault. Abuse.

Why are we so compelled to soften the blow of these words? Rather than acknowledging the behaviour for what it is, we have a need to reduce it to something «harmless».

Probably because so many of us have witnessed it, and not intervened, or participated in the bullying ourselves. To soothe our own concience, we reduce the abuse to something harmless (in the minds of the non-bullied people).

I realise it is difficult for people to understand a situation they have never experienced. But when people come forward with stories of how they are struggling with PTSD, anxiety, low self esteem, anger issues and substance abuse decades after they got away from their tormentors, it should call for some reflection.

Bullying is not something you just walk away from. Neither when it is happening or later in life.

Kids have to go to school. They have to stay on the school grounds for the entire day from Monday to Friday. They have to be around their abusers. They can’t walk away from the situation.

They are trapped.

All schools have pretty slogans of how they are not tolerating bullying on their premises, and if something is happening you should tell a teacher.

But this is just pretty words. The truth is schools and teachers don’t care. They will allow bullying to happen, and if anything just tell the victim they are too sensitive.

The truth is children, the weakest and most helpless members of our society, stands without any type of protection from harassment and abuse. And society seems totally okay with it.

If you want to know the true values of a society, look at how they treat the most vulnerable. Are they being listened to? Are their well being truly the concern of the people in power?

Or do they just laugh it away and make excuses when children are being harassed and abused by their peers?

If it was an adult that was subjected to such abuse, it would be taken to court. The abusers would be named and shamed. But because the victim is a child, it is of no concern. The little weirdo probably deserves it as well.

 

It has been a long time

So yeah, I started this blog and it was meant to be a weekly thing, then life and a soul crushing job took completely over and at the end of the day I had no energy to spare.

To write good text takes a lot of work. It demands peace, quiet, time and a huge level of concentration. None which I had.

But I do now, and during the year that has come and gone since the last time I wrote, I have done a lot of self analyzing and contemplation on my life and what happened to me in the years I was bullied.

There will be many ugly insights, regarding my bullies, myself and our society that allows this to happen. No, more than allows it, encourages it.

I promise I will not bail out again. So let us start. Continue reading It has been a long time