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Sunday, August 7, 2011

Emotional, verbal and physical bullying

Bullying comes in many forms. The aim of bullying is to gain power and control over your opinions, choices and actions.  The message is ‘Do things my way or I’ll  ...’ In other words, what he/she says goes, and though the partner may object, they usually comply to placate.
Placaters often have a hard time understanding why they feel so bad. The bullying may not sound like much and often people around them will minimise it. But it is actually a form of abuse. Abuse is any behaviour that doesn’t value the dignity of another person. Living in a climate where your dignity is assaulted by being ignored, criticised, mocked or shouted at has a deep effect. Emotional bullying cuts to the core of a person, attacking their very being and personal dignity. It leaves them feeling fearful, insignificant, lacking in confidence, unworthy, untrusting, emotionally needy, undeserving, unlovable and guilty. ‘Peace at any price’ is the motto: resentment and depression the result.

Emotional Bullying uses actions to hurt another person emotionally.

·         Being unavailable emotionally.
·         Refusing to communicate.
·         Angry silence.
·         Discounting your feelings
·         Minimising your achievements
·         Expecting you to always agree and give in.
·         Making you feel guilty.
·         Making you feel like you’re crazy.
·         Cross examining you for information.
·         Manipulating you with lies.
·         Treating you like you are worthless.
·         Distorting your reality (playing mind games).
·         Saying they’re only joking.
·         Acting unpredictably, mood swings.
·         Flirting with the opposite sex.
·         Expecting you to be perfect and meet every need
·         Constantly expecting preferential treatment.
·         Setting unrealistic expectations and telling you that you can’t do anything right.
·         Placing responsibility on you for anything that goes wrong.
·         Always putting their own needs before yours.
·         Expecting you to perform tasks that you find unpleasant or humiliating.
·         You understand their feelings, but they never try to understand yours.
·         You need to ‘walk on eggshells’ so you don’t upset them.

Verbal Bullying uses words to hurt another person emotionally.

·         Mocking your values
·         Saying no one else would be interested in you or want to go out with you
·         Making fun of people like you, including your race, gender, age or personal style
·         Calling you names eg fat, stupid or ugly
·         Criticising   your   looks,   actions,   efforts   and intelligence.
·         Telling jokes about you.
·         Humiliating or insulting you.
·         Using sarcasm.
·         Constantly disagreeing with you.
·         Constantly asking you to justify your actions or back up what you’re saying.
·         Using an unpleasant tone of voice.
·         Shouting.

Physical Bullying uses, or threatens to use, strength and force to hurt another person physically.

·         Hitting, punching, slapping, kicking, choking, shoving, being hit with objects, or being held against one’s will.
·         Breaking things.
·         Hurting pets.
·         Physically intimidating you, eg standing too close, banging things in a threatening way, driving dangerously, playing with weapons.
·         Threatening to hurt a person or property.
·         Repeatedly frightening you
·         Making you fear for your safety
·         Making you fear for the safety of others
·         Forcing sex or sexual acts when you don’t want it.

Other forms of bullying - isolation and financial

·         Isolating you and restricting your social activities.
·         Acting extremely possessive.
·         Always making you ask permission.
·         Using jealousy to justify their actions.
·         Restricting your activities eg not letting you go out with friends.
·         Restricting what you read, who you talk to etc.
·         Controlling all the money.

To avoid taking responsibility for their behaviour bullies might:

·         Tell you that you bully them.
·         See themselves as martyrs or victims.
·         Convince you that the bullying is your fault.
·         Blame you for problems, but never take responsibility for what they do.
·         Tell you it’s just a joke (but you feel humiliated).
·         Blame anyone and anything else for unfortunate events in their lives.
·         Tell you that you have psychological problems are crazy, hysterical, or blow things out of proportion.
·         Focus on flaws in your upbringing or your hormones.
·         Dismiss your difficulties or issues as unimportant or an overreaction.
·         Ignore logic and prefer amateur theatrics.
·         Try to destroy any outside support you receive - family, friends or counselling - by ridiculing it.

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