I have been bullied, and I know what it is like to suffer simply because of being gay. It is not easy. Being born gay makes you carry a heavier load of oppression and difficulty. I want to put my hand out into the world and allow others to grasp it. I felt as if there was no one to talk to, and I can only assume that you may feel the same, dear reader. I wish I had someone to speak with, to email, to confide in, someone who didnt know who I was, someone that could just hear me without me having to disclose my identity. I wish I had someone who understood. It’s not an easy burden to bear, but perhaps I can make it easier.
On a side note…
What does “Bullying” mean to you?
The topic of bullying is hot and heavy in the media right now… it seems there is always somebody talking about it. Are we talking about it too much? I know that I am not in a position to judge other’s experiences as they relate to being Bullied, but i’m going to do it anyway. Oh how often I here this, “Oh ya? I’ve been bullied too.” Has everybody been bullied? Perhaps to some degree. But therein lies the issue. If this word “BULLYING” gets used in every instance of aggression, frustration, or irritation directed at another person, what effect is that having on the people who are out there being harassed every day, being physically abused, having property graffitied, getting a constant input of demeaning and astoundingly powerful words, and whatever other form exists of the “phenomena,” so to speak. Maybe someone, some day, is being a jerk or a bitch. Does that make them a Bully? Sometimes people can be mean, if only for a one-off. People become mean in some moments… but a mean remark is different than the intended and constant harassment from the same individuals, for days, months, years. If someone called you a name once, in my opinion you were not Bullied. Teased? Picked on? Mocked? I find these words are certainly in the same family, cousins perhaps. But the B word, in the way that I know it in my heart and memory, is heavier.
As I reflect on my experience, in the moments of hearing a cheery tween mention her Bullying experience, I, for some reason, doubt that she understands the full weight of that word. Do I have a case of “nobody had it as bad as I”? Maybe, slightly, but I am aware of the falsity there. But whatever the case may be, this word, this infamous word, is becoming lighter and lighter. And there is danger there.
As with everything, there are extremes, and, naturally, everyone has different tolerance levels and coping abilities. A single name-calling experience to him may hurt more than the daily name-calling to her. We are all different people. We have different sensitivities.
What I mean to say, is that there is a fine line between taking a stand against something, and allowing that stand to become a fad. In a day and age when “likes” and “follows” mean more than love and respect, being “Bullied” becomes an attractive lure. I see the irony here, in that I am posting a video about my Bullying experience, a video that has a “like” option. But, to be clear, I am not here to collect “likes,” or to get a sliver of your pity, or sympathy, I am here to shed light, reach out, raise questions, and probe for e-opinions. If you “like” the video on the way, well that will naturally fluff my online ego, which is certainly a whole Blog entry of its own. The psychology of “likes” and “follows”… surely there is a thesis paper there.
These are my current thoughts.
Yes, I capitalize Bullying. It’s that powerful. And I fear it is being diluted.