Tuesday, May 27, 2014

How to Stop Bullies

In middle school I was in the vice Principal's office a lot.  I also was sent to the counselor's office on a semi-regular basis.  One particular time it was because I was supposed to correct a girl's paper and I wrote the lyrics to Green Day's Dominated Love Slave on her paper and then erased it enough so that I could say I erased it but also so that she could still read the lyrics.  The girl had been home schooled until that year and I don't think she had ever encountered a kid like me.  I dressed like a boy.  I was loud.  Really I was like an older Dennis the Menace, but a girl.  I never considered myself a bully because I never did anything to maliciously hurt anyone.  I just thought I was funny and I liked shocking people.  I saw that girl later in college and she didn't seem to have any hard feelings.  I imagine she had seen worse than me by then.

I also was "bullied" if you can call it that.  Boys at school called my friend and I lesbians, and threw rocks at us, but really I never cared.  I guess I would say people tried to bully me but I always thought I was a lot cooler and more interesting than the whole lot of them.  I found people quite boring, as I do now as an adult.  In middle school I was going to punk shows, learning to play guitar and publishing a magazine (yes I actually wrote my own magazine in middle school which I sold around town and traded through the mail).

For some reason this week my BeBe Babies Facebook page has been getting a lot of action, lots of new likes and comments.  Early last week there was a comment in Spanish that said something like "this doll doesn't look like your others and I don't like it."  Ok fair enough.  Then yesterday I got another comment also in Spanish that said "these dolls scare me."  Again fair enough.  After that a man commented "noooooooo..."  I wasn't sure what that was supposed to mean so I left it.  But then he returned to comment much later saying "these are just wrong."  Maybe I was feeling a little touchy last night, because I'm going through a break up and am about to get my period, but the comments just rubbed me the wrong way.  

Now I'm not saying these people are bullies, but I think it's in the same realm and here's why.  Both of the commenters from yesterday came back to comment a second time.  Now I know what normal people do when they don't like something, they stay away from it.  These types of people are fishing for conflict on the Internet.  There is absolutely no other reason to post these types of comments.  Certain types of people troll the Internet leaving comments on Facebook, news stories, Youtube, forums, anywhere they can stir up some emotional drama.  I've seen it many times in many places.      

And how did I feel about these comments?  Well they don't make me feel one bit bad about my dolls.  Opinions are like assholes and all that.  What bothers me about people like this is that they want me to feel bad.  They want to manipulate me into a confrontation by playing on my emotions.  I imagine them sitting at their computer, while life goes on around them, waiting for their little red notifications to light up.  Really how incredibly boring some human beings can be.

So how can you stop bullies?  You can't.  It's as simple as that.  Stop trying to stop people from being mean.  Just remember they are boring and you don't have to be.  You don't have to react like they want you to.  I know this issue is more complicated in the schools, but really why is everyone trying to expel the bullies?  Young bullies grow up to be adult bullies who harass people on the Internet or at work.  You cannot expel all the meanies in life.

As for my Facebook commenters I deleted their comments and banned them.  I deleted them not because they were particularly offensive, but because that is my business page and I don't need anyone putting off any potential customers.  And it's my page therefore I have the right to control the content on it.  I did write this comment on the post "I'm not sure what's going on with the people writing negative comments on my posts. If you don't like my dolls please don't look at them, and definitely do not post that you don't like them, because I really don't care what you think. My dolls are a positive place for me and anyone writing negative comments will be banned and deleted."  to which one of the original commenters responded with the typical "it was just a comment calm down". Ha ha ok!

On a positive note I'm slowly organizing my life little by little.  My friend moved back the US this weekend and gave me a much better phone than the one I was using.  Plus she gave me some cute baskets to organize with.  

I also finally went to Home Depot to get nails for concrete walls.  After a year I have finally put up some of my art.  Emotionally it's the little things that are helping me, the big things still look very far away. 

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