In the past few days I’ve been doing a lot of thinking (Ruh roh! That’s never good!). I was reading Under The Dome by Stephen King (fantastic book btw) and without giving too much away, it was essentially about bullying and the question of why can’t people just allow others the freedom to live their lives how they want to, without judgement or ridicule? It made me look back through my life with two questions I have never really asked myself. 1. Have I ever bullied anyone? 2. Was I ever bullied? I honestly don’t remember ever feeling really “picked on” or put down in my life. I think we all go through stages that are awkward or where we feel we aren’t doing or looking our best, but I never really took much of it to heart.
I do remember in high school there was this awful girl who absolutely hated me just because I was friends with her boyfriend and she was convinced some whoopy was going down without her knowledge. I never understood why she felt threatened by me, because I wasn’t interested at all and had a long term boyfriend at the time. We were strictly friends and that’s it. I just enjoyed making him my bitch while playing Halo. (Yes, even then I was a dork). I don’t think I ever intentionally hurt someone else’s feelings, and I think if I ever made anyone cry I would probably cry too and then want to hug it out. That’s not to say I’m a complete pushover! I can get mean when I need to, I just luckily have only had that happen rarely in my life. I’m like a sponge for other people’s emotions, so seeing someone cry just tears me up inside. So, I guess that’s why I have a hard time understanding the mentality of a bully, or what we call “haters” now. In the book there’s a particular character that has a bully for a father and therefore has grown up with that as a guideline and turns into a bully himself. I just wonder how much of who we become is nature or nuture and if some things about our personality are just things we are born into. Is there a part of the brain that is just wired differently to make you okay with things that someone else would be guilt ridden by?
Today I was trying to be semi-productive and get some work done while watching The View. Ugh, I know, I know. I usually can’t stand day time t.v. but I was desperate. So anyway, this woman from Real Housewives was on there (another show that I refuse to watch) and apparently domestic violence has always been an issue in her life and her husband who abused her recently killed himself and now she’s written a book about the entire thing to help other women/girls in the same situation (Bravo for her for turning such a negative in her life into such a positive to others!). Anyway, during the interview a part of the book was brought up in which she says that a part of her actually misses being abused – to a degree. Not because she liked it, obviously, but because she was so used to the tension, drama, chaos and struggle in her life that she didn’t know really how to handle it no longer being there. I thought that was so insightful, and so sad. It explains why women go through these cycles of abuse and can’t seem to break away from it. It’s almost like an addiction. It also explains why women who will tolerate this kind of thing always seem to find the guys that will take advantage of that fact and are abusive or bullies.
It’s interesting to think about how so many variables and moments in our lives can really change us as people. Who our parents are, who raises us, who we date, are friends with, marry. It can change what we accept about others, the standards we hold ourselves to, what we enjoy and what we hate. Who we are is a mixture of who we have known and what we’ve been through and the variables are endless. I’m grateful that what’s happened in my life has made me a more understanding and open person, and I feel sorry for people who can’t look in the mirror and find some good in themselves without tearing down others. Okay, sorry for the ramble. I’ve just seen this topic come up over and over again recently on Glee, in books, The View, and even Lady Gaga has taken a stand on Bullying. The point(s) I was making were…
1. Read Stephen King’s book – Under The Dome. It’s very very wordy, but it’s worth every page. I promise it will make you think, and really that’s all we can ever ask of a book.
2. Instead of judging other people, reflect on yourself and what you send into the world. If you spend your energy sending hate to other people, that’s what people will see of you. One of my absolute favorite stories is this one:
An old Cherokee is teaching his grandson about life. “A fight is going on inside me,” he said to the boy.
“It is a terrible fight and it is between two wolves. One is evil – he is anger, envy, sorrow, regret, greed, arrogance, self-pity, guilt, resentment, inferiority, lies, false pride, superiority, and ego.” He continued, “The other is good – he is joy, peace, love, hope, serenity, humility, kindness, benevolence, empathy, generosity, truth, compassion, and faith. The same fight is going on inside you – and inside every other person, too.”
The grandson thought about it for a minute and then asked his grandfather, “Which wolf will win?”
The old Cherokee simply replied, “The one you feed.
3. Think about what you do and say to others, because you never know what it really will mean to them.
Sorry for such a long post! I promise not everything will be so wordy in the future. 🙂 Have a happy Monday everyone. Feed your good wolves and say/do something nice for someone today! It will make YOU feel good too.