Bullycide: Help The Bully

  • Posted: January 12, 2010 and this post was last modified April 4, 2011.

It is easy to concentrate on the victims when we think of bullycide, more specifically the adolescent victims because it invokes a lot more emotions within us; as we all know, words can move us to do things we otherwise would not do. An eloquent speech can bring us to our feet in applause, or move us to the battlefields in support of our leader. They can invoke in us a desire to change the world or just battle the darkness that we fear; they can empower us. We know the power that words can have.

But what does that have to do with a bully? A bully enacts hate on his victims despite words telling him that he is wrong and despite words telling him to stop. The words don’t seem to impact the bully the same way, if even at all. So how do we connect to a bully?

Perhaps a little redirection would help: give the bully a positive outlet for his time, energy, and wit. Whether it be more social activities so he can see how to better interact with his peers or getting him involved in sports so he can release his energy, dealing with a bully does not have to be a negative undertaking.

And what of the adult bully? We would all like to hope that we could deal with a bully before he reaches adulthood so as not to ‘lose’ him altogether, but just because an adult is a bully does not mean he is not capable of change. If adults could not change, there would be no need for interventions or therapy or rehab; a bully may not have a tangible problem that he has to overcome, but emotional problems can often be just as detrimental.

So what do we do with an adult bully? Apart from the very idea of this blog trying to spread the word about the problem that is bullycide (suicide as a result of bullying), we’d like to see if there is a way to deal with the bullies themselves. We don’t have all the answers; no one does. If we did, it would not be the epidemic it is. But we’d like to discuss and explore options available or that can be made available to stop or even help the bully.

Labels can often be misleading. Branding someone a bully does not make them subhuman; it does not mean they should be left out of the help or healing process.

But what do we do?

I honestly don’t know. In a perfect world, we’d have no bully, but then again, we’d have no suffering either. But if we really thought about it, a perfect world would consist of no feelings altogether because at the point where we are able to control our own thoughts, decisions, and feelings, we begin to act. A perfect world is a perfect myth, but that does not mean we should stop trying.

I live by the motto that it never hurt to try and I believe that. Sure, your pride might be wounded and your ego shattered, but who knows that other than you? If you don’t let it show, who would know? So it couldn’t hurt to try and talk to a bully. It couldn’t hurt to try and find the root of the problem. It couldn’t hurt to try and resolve the issues. And it certainly couldn’t hurt to try and redirect their energy into something more constructive; constructive is good!

The adult bully can often feel threatened by their victim, hence why they choose them to victimize. Why not try separating them? Seeing how they perform in a different environment? Sure, this is not always a simple solution or even easy to do, but it can at least be considered when it is available. Why not give the bully a new focus just as you would your child? A bully is not always dumb; after all, they have to know who they can easily victimize and what buttons to push, right? Why not use their ‘strengths’ in other areas? Redirect their energy.

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