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This Guy I Bully

Question:

There’s this guy who I bully whose smaller then me.I want to stop bullying him but every time I try to go up to him to say sorry he cringes or looks stupid and then I get really, really mad and bully him. And then I feel awful after. Even if I just simply avoid him he still somehow makes me angry even if I don’t see him. Even just spotting him makes me feel grumpy. Sometimes I feel like I want to kill him. He’s the only person I’ve ever really really bullied. I’m not female so I don’t fancy him. So what the heck is wrong with me?!!?

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Answer:

First, I want to thank you for your honesty in writing to us about this problem. It takes courage to own-up to something like this and I am pleased to read that you are aware that something is wrong in your behavior.

One of the most serious predictors of future bullying behavior is the fact of having been bullied your self. By that I mean that those who grow up in households where there was abuse tend to go on to become abusers themselves. Particularly if a male was beaten by his father there is a good chance that the male will pick on and attack other males and even females. Observing parents being abusive to one another is another good indicator of similar future behavior by the children. So, if you were abused or beaten by your father it might explain your bullying behavior towards this person.

In addition, all of us have characteristics about our selves that we do not like. For example, men do not enjoy thinking of their selves as weak or cowardly. If a man thinks of himself in those ways then he is likely to dislike and even hate similar characteristics in another male. If you entertain, even in the back of your mind, any ideas or worries that you are weak, and this male reminds you of your fears about your self, it could motivate you to attack him.

Whatever the motivating factors might be for you to bully this person, there has to be a lot of pent up anger, frustration, rage and even feelings of helplessness. As you your self admit, bullying this individual results in your feeling awful about your self. Actually, that is a good thing and that is why I am going to suggest the following:

Please seek psychotherapy for your self. It is fairly clear from your posting that you have a conscience and do not approve of your behavior. That is why you should get help for this from a psychologist or clinical social worker. You do not want to spend your life attacking others people who come along who might spark this type of thing.

Thank you for your question and good luck in your pursuit of help with this problem.

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