Thursday, May 18, 2017

Living With A Bully

I was recently reading some tweets by @Hope4Siblings on sibling abuse, and never stopped to give it a thought.  I'm guessing it is widespread or so it seems in my world.  Most of the things that I went through, I have often minimized as if they were just normal and I guess I've done the same here.

While I'm not one to embrace too many labels, I know I went through sibling abuse. My older brother made my life hell for me.  Every chance he got, he'd pound the crap out of me.  He loved to tackle me on the ground.  He was so overweight and he used that weight to hold my arms back and then jump up and down on my upper arms and shoulders with his knees.  It hurt like hell and to this day I struggle with deep pain sometimes in my shoulders.

   I was living with a bully...

Then in the second grade, there were these fourth graders in the Hampton, Iowa elementary school I went to that further made this difficult.  There were four (4) of them but I can't remember their faces or their names.  I'm not sure I knew their names.  They would each take one arm and leg and then start swinging me back and forth and let me go sailing in the air.  When I'd land on the ground, it hurt like all you can imagine it hurt.  No teachers, of course, would see it or listen to me when I told them what was going on.  I hated that school.  I hated the teachers.

   I was living with a bully... 

When we lived in one place as a kid, I was maybe in kindergarten or first grade.  We would ride the bus to school because we lived out in the country.  It is important to note that we were pretty poor and lived in a very cold rural house in Iowa.  Winter times meant being cold.  I barely had mittens or a hat to wear.  I was lucky if my boots had no holes in them.  The kids would try to grab and steal my mittens and hat every time I got on the bus.  They didn't care if I froze.  The bus driver would yell at me when I tried to get them back.  I hated the kids and the bus driver.

   I was living with a bully...

I grew up in a house where my father did unspeakable things to me.  You can learn more about that in my books, but it was not a pretty time.  I was more of a sensitive little boy.  I didn't enjoy hunting and killing things.  My little hands would get cold.  I wasn't as big of a "man" as I was supposed to be and that brought on a lot of hurt and pain for me.

   I was living with a bully... 

I worked in a job where a coworker was nothing but a bully.  He thought making fun of my sexuality and everything else about me was the norm.  People in authority in the company didn't seem to care.  They just turned a blind eye toward it.  In fact, I was told once that "I just needed to learn to work with others as adults."  It was as if what this person did was okay, but I was the one with a problem.  Emotionally, it took its toll on me and I finally quit.

   I was living with a bully...

Whether it is sibling abuse or being sexually abused by someone in your family, it is not easy and it is not fun.  When there are no people to turn to that can help, you feel all alone.  When the bully in the house threatens you and you know they are dead serious, you have no one to tell.

I see far too many bullies in this day and age and all of them trigger me.  I have no use for a bully.  If you can't respect others, then as some might say, "You are dead to me".  Sorry if that sounds harsh, but after a lifetime of bullies, I struggle to feel love toward them.  It is still part of my healing journey.

Living with a bully is difficult.  We need to get serious in this world about stopping the bully that exists in far too many places.  I still deal with the aftermath of what I experienced as I'm sure most people do as well.

If you're a bully - get help!  If you are being bullied - keep seeking help.  You should not have to endure this behavior.  The bully is the one with the problem, not you!   And if no one listens - scream a little louder until they do!  Find someone to help you.  You don't deserve to be bullied by anyone.

Blog Post And Images (c) 2017 by Don Shetterly
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