Category Archives: bullying

Yet Another Reason

not to use a self-checkout. I have NEVER used them, for a few reasons:

  1.  I did retail for 30 years. If you want me to check out my own merchandise, you will pay me or I won’t do it.
  2. Someone has a job to do that. If we do it for them, there are no jobs. Remember the high school kid who used to pump your gas? When was the last time you bought gas you didn’t have to pump youself?
  3. Why should I make their corporate profits bigger? When was the last time you saw a self-check out line at a Mom & Pop market say? You won’t. Why? They can’t afford it, they don’t make enough $. ‘Nuff said!

You might be interested in this article, I know I was!

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Stigma & Shame Links

I found this about stigma the other day. You might be interested? link

And while we’re talking about the good or bad the internet can bring, you may want to listen to this TED talk I found last week which talks about shame as well.

My personal experience was that shame was the biggest single thing which kept me from healing. link

J

My Friends

are people I admire, not surprisingly. That said, it occurred to me tonight that my friends, as diverse as they are: sf writers, bibliophiles, computer geeks, teachers, artists, antique/vintage retailers — all have at least one thing in common.

They all feel strongly about what they believe. Whether I agree with them, or not. Whether I share the perspective/history which got them there, or not, we share that. We’re passionate about our beliefs.

I’m not only talking about religion, although that’s included, but also issues related to the flow of history, societies, mankind’s future, etc. I think to be my friend requires the commitment to your own beliefs as well as the manners to help me find our common ground, if we disagree.

When the conversation starts “I’m right; you’re wrong.” It’s a pretty short trip to good bye for me.

That statement echoes abuse, right? Abusers all start with the notion that THEY are right.

I don’t require agreement, but tolerance — acceptance of differing opinions as having value, even when not shared. I don’t need you to agree with me, but I do need real manners: not couching your “acceptance” in such a way that is really isn’t. That’s what most of the people of my old life do — say the right words, in the wrong ways. The intellectuals sneer; the monied hold themselves superior. Me? I walk away.

Not surprisingly, I have no tolerance or patience for the underlying attitude which creates abuse in my life now. Yes, that makes me just as bad. I know it; I admit it. And no, I won’t change it. No matter who it might be, they aren’t worth the trip through hell that being around an abusive person, again, would bring.

There are relationships I mourn since I walked away. I’m sure there will be more still. I have this gut belief that all people are valuable, if you just know how to look. All people have a worthwhile story. All people.

Some people I can’t get away from my damnable past when they’re in my life, so I’ve removed them. It doesn’t mean I don’t love or care for them; it means I love me more, as I should.


I wrote this originally 4/4/2018, and I have no idea why I didn’t publish it? Should have!

PURSUE Happiness

This is what I used as a reminder and still do, when appropriate:

Put Up, Remember, Shut Up, & Endure

When things got really bad, I’d use the “pursuit of happiness” idea, with this as an acronym, to get myself through. I’d remind myself to be greedy and/or fiercely vigilante, that I deserved happiness, it was something I’d wanted and worked for, for decades.

This is for dealing with others’ actions. Sometimes I had to grit my teeth, shut up, and deal. (Often my being able to “deal” wasn’t being able to deal with whatever was going on currently, but a focus on the future, the possibility that things would change at some undefined future point.) I expect this to be true for the rest of my life.

When people have called me “brave” or “strong” I’ve always said that’s not true.

It isn’t true — I am STUBBORN. I use PURSUE to remind myself that stubbornness, an unwillingness to accept that the world is F’d up beyond hope is my “superpower.” It’s my form of being passive aggressive. I put up, shut up and endured, while dreaming not of hurting the person harming me, not of a world where whatever wasn’t happening, but of a world where what was happening here/now was a distant and unimportant piece of long ago.

I encourage you to be stubborn, in appropriate ways. The world doesn’t owe you anything, others don’t owe you anything. But you owe yourself to try and make your future the best and brightest you can. That means not hurting others, not lashing out, not blaming, but getting on with your life with joy — when you can.

It’s what George Herbert said: “Living well is the best revenge.”

Can’t Always Be Right

I articulated something the other day, one of those things I say and just knew I’d nailed it. This: “You cannot always be right and maintain a relationship.”

I was talking to someone and realized I’d just said something I’ve felt and said by going around the park many times before, but never articulated it so concisely.

right wrong

I had a friend (deceased now, alas) whose spouse did a world-class stupid thing. The friend said to me afterwards, “I realized I could have a really GOOD fight, or a marriage, but not both.” They opted to keep the marriage, which lasted a bit longer.

Someone else, a few years back, asked me how you forgave a spouse what they considered to be just short of adultery in severity. My answer, “You decide the relationship is more important,” which only sort of worked for this person, as they’re someone who has to be “right.”

The other couple I know where someone has to be “right,” both people involved are passive aggressive. Sounds like hell to me, but it isn’t my marriage, thank Gawd.

All of that went into the mix which resulted in this truth.

If you always insist on your own way, the other person will eventually get tired of it (unless they can’t for whatever reason) they’ll leave. It’s Gone with the Wind too, right?

Relationships are a continual negotiation, if you insist on “winning,” eventually you lose. You have to be willing to lose, just like you have to be willing to give some ground in a financial or legal negotiation.

I know a book dealer who was disliked by almost everyone in the biz in this state. The reason? He always wanted a bigger discount than the industry standard (20%) but when you were buying books from him, he always had a reason he couldn’t give you a discount at all. It only took a few transactions with him before you decided that you didn’t want his business or to look at his stock — for that reason.

You have to be willing to listen and give up something to get something. It’s the only way relationships work.

Bullying/abuse starts when there’s no willingness to give up anything, you have to always be right or in the power seat. At the extreme, you can get me to do what you want with a weapon pointing at me, but you can’t (unlike Chuck Colson’s adage) really change my mind. You can shut me up and mandate my behavior, but my heart will not be in it. When I can, I’ll revert to what I was before. True change only happens with negotiation, give and get, between people, groups, institutions, and within myself too.

The only way I can really live with the PTSD and the pain it causes is to acknowledge it, accept it, and give it some ground by paying attention to it. I mentioned to someone online that I do something I realize is dumb as a “safety” measure, because it really doesn’t make me safer, but it appeases my PTSD anxiety. In return, I sleep more.

I had to stop trying to get it to go away, stop being there, or change it. None of that worked. I have PTSD. It’s there; it’s going to stay there, and it is what it is. If I start there — now what? I do things like my “safety” measure because it keeps the PTSD quiet. I have to negotiate with myself. Waiting for the other shoe to drop, that is, giving it time to, was another way I acknowledged it.

It has taken me a long, long time to pull together all these strands to see their similarities.

Self-Interest, Selfish, Bullying or Abuse – What Is It? – My Opinion

I grew up in an abusive household. The woman who was my abuser wasn’t related to me, but she might as well have been, in everything but genetics, she was my mother. Young kids believe anything parents tell them. She told me that I was stupid, ugly and so flawed that even God couldn’t love me. She did this in a 1,000 small ways, verbally, the way she treated me, the tone of her voice, what she said I could do and what I would never be able to do. She convinced me I was dumb, fatally flawed, and my family and God hated me or couldn’t love me.

Because of my past, I have “radar” about abuse, most abuse surviviors do. I thought I could NEVER be abusive. Hah. Not true. I have twice apologized to my husband for behavior over a period of time which I later saw was abusive in nature if not actual abuse.

How? Well, think of it this way: abuse and bullying both start with self-centeredness. I had a boat-load of problems when I came out of my childhood home, and what I’d done or the opinions I’d formed about how the world worked to me weren’t just opinions, they were FACT! and NECESSARY FOR SURVIVAL!

Because of that, I wouldn’t and couldn’t entertain other opinions or feelings as possibly having merit, including those of the man I married. I had a boatload of rage that I hadn’t resolved and that also pushed me to not even listen to my husband’s opinions, ideas, or feelings about some issues. It didn’t matter what he said, it was wrong, unless it agreed with what I thought and believed.

And isn’t this a form of bullying too? I mean really, think about it. Isn’t bullying imposing your opinion and/or wants on someone else, no matter what they say or do? I kept that up for a few years.

I also used the pattern I’d learned with my first husband, who’s parents (divorced) had called each other stupid, given each other charley horses, etc.

I called my husband names, made fun of him — in front of him — in public,. One day he started to bend my thumb back when I did this. I was outraged! How dare he hurt me?

He said, “You’re hurting me too by what you say. If you stop, I will.” And I did. I never knew you could have a relationship with a man that didn’t include making fun of each other in a nasty way, I thought it was just the way relationships worked. I’d never had another model.

There were other ways I believed I had to have my own way, no matter what, that no one else’s opinion mattered. As I’ve grown up and away from the wounded child I was, I’ve learned that they, like the lousy model I had for marriage, were born from the wounding, not truth. Yes, I have opinions. No, I don’t always think everyone else is right. But I do think that everyone’s opinion is valid and should be listened to these days. I’ve grown up. I don’t have to have my own way all the time any more to feel safe.

The hoarding is the last of these behaviors (I hope). And, yes, it’s another form of abuse I’ve inflicted on my patient husband. It’s hard to move away from something that makes you feel safe, even when you know it’s wrong. No one ever said adulthood was easy — I’m working on it!