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Dealing With Gay Bullying

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Posted by Joseph on June 8, 2015
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For anyone who is being bullied, you are not alone.
Nearly 77% of the population has said that they have been bullied in their lives. The sad part is that most of these people have taken that mindset of victimization with them their entire lives. Bullying is a problem in this country. We see it in suicide cases that make headline news, yet we fail to understand that there are many more stories – hundreds – every year that don’t reach the editing room of CNN.

It’s happening in our own backyards. They are our children, our nephews, our nieces, and us. If you’re being bullied, we know how you feel. We went through it ourselves. Did you know that 46% of guys have been in physical fights as a victim of bullying? Not only that:
  • Gay people are 4 times as likely to get bullied than other kids.
  • Gay people are 5 times more likely to skip school due to constant bullying.
  • 9 out of 10 LGBT students report bullying to authorities (Half are physically assaulted).
  • In 1 out of 3 reported cases, the school staff did NOTHING to resolve it.
  • 28% of all young students drop out of school because of bullying.

In today’s world, there are many kinds of bullying.
Emotional bullying – This is what happens when rumors begin about us, whether on purpose or accidental, and the result is used in an intentional way to hurt our feelings. This can be one of the most devastating because as young teenagers, we build our individuality. To have that seemingly rejected by the world can make us think that we are not good enough to be in it. It can happen face to face, behind our backs or worst of all, on the internet….
Cyber bullying – This has the potential to be the most aggravated, since it can happen anonymously. Usually when it happens, other people feel comfortable in joining in because they are safe behind their computer or smart phone. No one has to know who they are or how they actually feel, and the event can be made public in an instant.
  • 42% of ALL kids have been bullied online
  • 1 in 4 kids have been verbally attacked online.
  • 35% have been threatened.
  • 58% of ALL kids have reported that something mean had happened to them online.
Physical Bullying – It’s been happening since the beginning of time. Pushing, punching, shoving, and any other physical harm. Even if it’s not done to our bodies, the bully can damage your property and still be a physical bully.

So What Do We Do When We Are Being Bullied?
The thing you should do is be smart about it. Everyone can relate to the stomach-turning fear of the consequences. Are they going to find out? Is it going to get worse? If I don’t report it, will they end up doing something even more awful? Will the teachers do anything if I report it? We all understand. Keep in mind, adults were kids too and nothing breaks our hearts more than to see a victim of bullying.
What you need to do is NOT think of the consequences. Instead focus on the things that are in YOUR CONTROL:
  • Know The Bully – You know their tactics more than anyone. Understand what kind of bully they are – Physical, Emotional, or Cyber – and try to understand your situation. You can’t get out of a situation if you don’t know what kind you’re in. If it’s physical, there is no excuse to NOT report it. You should never feel like you are in physical danger. 
  • Avoid Them – The whole tactic your parents say about “just ignoring them” will only work for so long. Take it a step further. If you know what route they take in the hallways or streets, take another way to get wherever you need to go. This might seem like you are being a coward, but you’re not! There’s nothing wrong with avoiding confrontation. Keep in mind that the only reason they bully is to feel like they have power – don’t make them feel like they succeeded. Take your friend’s route next time, this way it doesn’t look like you are doing it on purpose.
  • Keep Your Cool – Try not to loose it in front of your bully. This is exactly what they want. It can be scary and unnerving, but all bullying is temporaryREMEMBER THIS. Soon they will find another victim, because eventually they will see that you are not feeding them anymore. Stand up for yourself, and let them know that what they’re trying to do is not working.
  • Find Their Weakness – Everyone has a weakness. Why? Because we’re human. The most important thing to understand is to NOT BECOME the bully. Instead, give them a taste of what they’re dishing to you. When you verbally insult them (typically in a funny way), you are acting as the antidote to their sickness. They will be “dethroned” in a sense, and understand finally that if they keep picking on you, they will risk another humiliating confrontation. Be ready for all kinds of reactions. It could be bad or good, but either way it will give the point across that you aren’t being bothered by them. 
  • Help And Defend Other Victims – Not only does this prevent other people from their own bullies, but you will also realize that you are not alone. When you stand up for other people, you will slowly develop courage. Courage that you will eventually gain enough of to stand up to your own bully. It’s like a boomerang. Help others to help yourself.

The next is my favorite, and also the most tactful…
  • Show Them Love – Some bullies pick on people and don’t care how the victim reacts at all. It’s just a way to unleash their frustration with their own lives. If this is your bully, then look at it as just that – a pathetic cry for help. Sometimes when we give our concern to the bully and offer love to them by saying things like “Are you okay with yourself?” or “Do you need someone to talk to?” or “Is everything alright, I’m concerned for you,” they will be completely thrown off balance. They’ll realize that perhaps you can see through their transparency and know that it’s all an act, and will be scared for what else you can see. This will make them stop using you as a punching bag. On the other hand, they could just think that you’re a total weirdo – either way, they will most likely lessen the bullying tremendously. See what I mean when I said tactful? 

The power of reporting your bully is crucial. Not only can it stop the bullying, but can also prevent the bully from targeting future students. You MUST REPORT the bullying if it gets to a bad place. No one should ever live in fear. Like I said before, adults used to be children – I know it’s hard to realize that, but it’s true.
If you know anyone that is gay, particularly an adult, try and reach out to them. Gay people know the struggles of being picked on for being gay and the aftermath it can have on us. Reach out to other gay people for support. If your school has a gay support group, join it and try to be involved as much as you can. If you are in the closet, reach out to the Trevor Project.
The Trevor Project talks to 30,000 teenagers over the phone every year who are being bullied, contemplating suicide, or knows other people who are being bullied and needs advice. Don’t be afraid to ask for help – YOU ARE NOT ALONE.
Call The TREVOR PROJECT at 1-866-488-7386.

Don’t take these burdens all on your own. There are people that can help you talk through it. When you allow it to build and build and build with no opportunity to release, it is going to eventually reach a point of no return. Talk to people. Venting to people about your issues can be the most beneficial thing you can do for your mental health. That’s why we adults spend hundreds of dollars on therapists. (It works)
Most people have been bullied at one point or another. We know what it’s like to walk in fear and feel helpless and small, but if there’s one thing that you must learn out of this situation, it’s to NOT LET ANYONE TAKE AWAY YOUR SPIRIT.
When you are targeted in school by a bully, most of the time it’s because you have something special that sticks out from the rest of the crowd. Above all, this should be what you hold on to. The things that make you different are the things that make you unique.

Being picked on is a selfish act. The bully is attempting to show how “powerful” they can be, but in retrospect it is only showing how pathetic they are. They cannot prove themselves any other way because they don’t have the ability to. They can’t rely on their personality to prove their self worth. They don’t have it. Feel sorry for them, because it’s pitiful.
Whatever they say to you is not worth your tears. It isn’t about you. It’s about them! All of their actions are a result of their insecurities. Insecurities that you shouldn’t let them transfer to you. You are better than that.

THIS IS NOT HOW IT WILL ALWAYS BE! 
IT DOES GET BETTER!

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