I would like to take a moment to step away from products and into the real world; as today I realized something fairly profound. I’m sure a lot of you have watched the viral bullying video and if you haven’t, I suggest you do. It sheds light on a phenomena that you can relate to whether you were the coolest kid in class or the most picked on. I am here to talk about something I didn’t expect to follow me after high school… being bullied as an adult.
There is so much energy, time, and money, that is spent bringing awareness to anti-bully campaigns for boys and girls, grades K – 12, and even throughout college. However, what seems to be less talked about is what happens after you graduate and how to cope.
I was picked on, albeit nothing super severe, but enough to be self conscious about my pale skin, my stutter, and my nervous laugh. Though, when I was young I wasn’t able to decipher how mean some kids were truly being, what bothers me now, as a 28 year old, is that bullying is still very much alive. It’s alive in nursing, in finance, in college and education.
My personal experiences have been as a new nurse, giving report to the older nurses while they roll their eyes, question your judgement, push off an impossible assignment to you to 1. watch you drown 2. lighten their load. It’s horse shit, it makes you cry, and breaks you down.
Bullying is in your first day of graduate school when someone makes you feel stupid, leaves you out of the after class invite on purpose, it’s in your lunch room when you can hear someone whisper behind your back, it’s in your bosses undermining comments and it’s in your mom’s glance at your waist but she smiles and says “what?”. Bullying is crazy, okay. But, just like in grade school, it’s what the people who have no satisfaction in their own life do to make themselves feel better about their own misery.
The only person who can stop the cycle is you.
Being a punching bag is horrible. But you know what’s worse? Being the miserable person doing all of the punching, because really, who has energy for that? Lonely, sad, bullies who have their own scars that are too scared to show them so they give someone else scars to look at. They want you to look at those scars, how they’ve treated you, to feel horrible, isolated, unloved, desperate for acceptance, and bitter. They are angry because they don’t understand why you don’t see the world just like they do, through a dim and jaded lens. Again, the only person to stop the cycle is you. Don’t let your spirit fade and if you have that voice in your head giving yourself compassion and love, HOLD ON TO IT. You deserve it. That’s the voice that will set you free. And apart.
All I ask in reading this is to be kinder to yourself. Give yourself a chance to be who you are and somehow be okay with that person. The world needs more of that. A more unabashed version of you.
Fuck the haters.