The Pain of Bullyism and How to Understand It


As noted in the illustrations above, these suffering characters do appear to be exhibiting much pain and anguish as the object of verbal and emotional assaults by dysfunctional perpetrators, Bullies.

Research into this topic has documented a strong link between bullying and depression. Depression can have a number of significant effects in a person’s life. The link between bullying and depression can also extend to additional emotional dysfunctions such as low self esteem anxiety, physical illnesses and poor career performance.

Before a discussion is presented on bullyism, we do need to define our terms and understanding on what is a bully. Bullying is seen as purposeful attempts to control another person through verbal abuse which can be in the tone of one’s voice or in content such as teasing or threats. Exclusion from a group or even repeated physical abuse or violence that are deemed unwanted by the victim. Bullying occurs in schools, workplaces,in homes, on playgrounds, in the military and even in nursing homes. Bullying is the most common type of violence in contemporary American society. It should be noted that bullying is considered to be separate and distinct from sexual harassment.

What causes one to become a bully? There are so many factors that create such a negative individual such as cultural factors, institutional causes, social issues, family issues, power and the bully’s personal history. Cultural factors regarding our fascination with winning, power and violence which influence the compulsive drive to seek power contribute highly to the formation of a bully.The high rate of domestic violence does impact upon our young people growing up to expect that violence is an acceptable method of getting what we want. Our institutional environments precipitate violent, bully-like behaviors if there is the absence of behavioral standards regarding interpersonal relationships or the tendency to ignore complaints of bullying from the victims.

Unfortunately, the bully does acquire more social recognition for negative behavior than any positive actions. Situation comedies and reality television significantly contribute to this societal dysfunction as well as the volume of violent reports in our media newsfeed.The family system is, indeed, the core of creating behaviors that mold the fabric of our world. If there is an absence of love and respect and a high incidence of violence and rage, the children will absorb these behavior patterns and bullies will evolve from this milieu . Bullyism begins in the womb of the dysfunctional family.

In my next post, I will continue to describe this dysfunctional individual who does attempt to destroy adult victims and how this bully is identified and, perhaps, rehabilitated away from the bully’s quest to hurt and inflict pain on their victims.

Please do share your voice and what you are feeling regarding this painful subject. As a therapist, I will provide advice and interventions in later blogs as well as introduce to topic of child bullies.

One thought on “The Pain of Bullyism and How to Understand It

  1. Where there is fear, dysfunction, and low self-esteem, there are bullies. I had never experienced it until I started a blog. And I got anonymous hostile attacks on my blog triggered by a subject they did not agree with. It takes you by surprise and it’s hard to recognize that it really has nothing to do with you. The projection of another person’s pain, fear, or anger is tough to take. In my instance, I chose not to publish their comments. And that is the only advice to give. Do not acknowledge them. Do not feed the trolls. They will withdraw if they don’t get the interaction they are looking for at least online. Good luck with your series.


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