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Maybe They’ll Outgrow It?


Written by – Barbara Anne  (PROFILE/BIO:

We have chatted about bullying – young people and bullying.  I spent time talking about both standing up for yourself, standing up for your friends as well as strangers and working to be sure that your child is not treating others poorly – even if that means peeking in when they think you are not looking…

MB1When I started writing this I was upset by the behavior of a man – who also happens to be a sports figure.

I had to whittle away at what was really bothering me.  Who was I really upset with?  What was I really upset about?

Well, I am upset with the player – and other players who think that they can be violent outside of their arena and have no consequence.  The ones that think they have their own rules.

But then I had to realize I am also upset with whoever it was that let them think, gave them the impression that because they are that good – they have their own rules.  That didn’t just pop into their heads the day they signed a contract.  That may have been their tiny team – high school – college –

I had to remind myself I wasn’t upset with all of sports – I am mad at the higher level organization that puts points before people – but then when I made that statement to myself – I realized something.

This is bullying.  I am upset at the top, the middle, the bottom, the team – those in the stands –

Which lead me directly to the sad, unfortunate reminder that this happens all around the world – and I am upset with “all of them” too – because they … WE let this happen, every day.

Any time someone uses their size, their youth, their strength, their power, their money, their influence, their confidence, to hold back, to harm, to belittle, a smaller, older, weaker, less powerful, poorer, scared human or animal – they are a bully.

Maybe I am upset with more people than I originally thought.

Bullying isn’t just in the schools people – it isn’t just about children or teenagers; look around you.

We tell our children, at least I do – that they are who they say they are – not who anyone else “thinks” they are – I tell them to stand up for not only themselves but their friends – for those who are not prepared to do it on their own.

What you would not accept – do not do.   Would you accept what you are about to do – being done to your mother, your sister, your daughter?  Your father, your brother, your son?

MB2What you would not accept for yourself and those you love – do not do.

Do not accept inappropriate behavior – anywhere.  In the hall – in your home – in the car – in the mall – at work – on the street – anywhere – whether it has something to do with you or not.

Whether it has something to do with you – or not.

That’s right – stick your nose where it doesn’t belong.  There, I said it.

If someone around you is doing something harmful to someone else – speak up.

If you are at the water cooler talking guy talk – and it turns to a “funny discussion” about what somebody did this weekend – and it really isn’t funny… in fact it is mean and cruel – don’t stand around and laugh about it – at the very least, excuse yourself – but even better be the one who says, you know, I don’t really find that comical – and I bet others will join you.

It truly takes a village – because if they didn’t learn this lesson at home or on the playground, and they didn’t just “outgrow” it – we have to do something about it.

Whether that means you choose not to play on the same field with them, whether you will not laugh at what they incorrectly find funny, whether you step in when you see someone harming another – by calling the police, talking to the assaulter – or perhaps by building up the assaulted so they understand and remember that they do not deserve what you know is happening to them…

These are scary things – they really are – I get that.  But society should find action to be more acceptable than inaction when a larger human attacks a smaller human because the cheese burned on the pizza – over the past, or because they didn’t signal, cut them off, folded the towels the wrong way, put the toilet paper on in the under instead of over position, didn’t answer fast enough, or just because they had a bad day – and what happened to them, actually had nothing to do with you – but there you are – wrong place… wrong time –

Until we all find inaction to be unacceptable we are no better.

If we continue to sit by and just let abuse happen – and do not up the consequence – and empower the terrified – we are no better.

In the cases where the accuser is afraid and the accused walks free – if you know better – I’m not talking about doing anything drastic here – nothing Dare Devil, vigilante style – but help this person get some help – being the same ol’ friend, brother, sister, parent you have always been and not saying or doing anything about behavior that you know about – you are in a way condoning it – that has to stop.

And never automatically think NOT MY _______________ – without investigation – because every person who has had a moment where they lost it – and done something they shouldn’t have that harms another was first someone’s baby.

So yes, I am upset.  I am upset about all of it –

MB3At the end of the day, I am upset with me.

Because while I work hard on this in my own little personal corner of the world – do I really do enough when it has nothing to do with me?  I’m not sure any amount of work could ever be enough – as long as this behavior exists – so I will find more to do.  I will work on it – I will make something happen, I will make a difference – I will #DoSomething.

How about you?

Blessings and Grace.


(Barbara Anne ARCHIVES:

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