The Teasing Survival Guide

Teasing is awful. Teasing can really screw kids up for life. I've been teased an incredible amount in my younger years, and I can relate to anyone who is going through it or has gone through it before. I was teased my entire life in elementary school and the first half of my sixth grade. Six long years of hell. I want to help out all those kids who have felt the humiliation and the complete loss of self-dignity. I also want to talk about what teasing really does to people in the long run, so maybe the next time you see a kid being bullied, maybe we could start doing things instead of letting it happen. I'm sure that there's not a lot of people on here would let anything like that slide in real life, unless I have a completely wrong perception of the people on this site. Still, I want to make a powerful statement with this one. Teasing was one of the worst things that ever happened to me and I want other people who are going through it to know that you can end it and that you're not alone.

Bullies - An Inside Look
You've probably heard over and over that a bully is really a coward. I'm really going to stress it in this section.
- Bullies are incredibly insecure people. They, arguably like many other people, do not want that to show through, because they themselves fear scrutinization. And their tactic to protect themselves from it is to become one as well. It makes perfect sense. They make fun of other people, and so they seem like the height of cool. Not only would people never suspect they were self-conscious, but they would also never dare say anything to humiliate them.
- Bullies pick on the ones like themselves. They pick out the people who show outward signs of being self-conscious or afraid. Not to be cruel, but because they are easier targets. They figure that those people won't stand up for themselves, and it would bring them to instant stardom to start making fun of them.
- Bullies don't necessarily pick on people because they're "ugly," "poor," or "stupid." Because, and this will be a Blog coming after this one, people aren't as superficial as you think. It just happens to be that the people considered "ugly" or "stupid" constantly worry about their so-called "flaws", and they appear insecure and gradually convince themselves that they are what they fear most. Therefore, these type of people happen to be easy targets because of their low self-esteem.
- Bullies always try to humiliate other people while in front of a large group, so everyone sees that he's "bad" or "cool," whatever he's aiming for.
- Keep in mind: a bully is not just someone who goes around beating people up. Bullies are also the clicky little snots always spreading rumors about people and degrading people in public. A bully is anyone who intentionally tries to humiliate people.

Retaliation
If you are ever approached by someone who's trying to ruin your rep, or ever catch wind of someone spreading rumors, you have to act fast. F-A-S-T.
- You have to talk back as SOON as whoever the person bullying you comes face-to-face with you and says something. You have to be stern, YOU have to be the one in control, not the bully. Stay calm, but you must make your point clear. And you definitely, absolutely, for sure, MUST be confident. You must show no signs of faltering, the slightest bit of doubt in what you're doing. Look him in the eye.
- As absolutely crazy as this sounds, it's better to be where there's a group of people. Put this person back in place, and have him feel the humiliation for once! Once you stand up for yourself and people know that you're not so much of a laughing stock and more of an average person, you've got their respect. And remember what I said: don't let them faze you! BE CONFIDENT. As hard as it is to do after going through what you've gone through, you have to unearth that inner strength and unleash it.
- Remember what I said about being confident and calm? At the same time, don't be yelling and screaming at the person. You won't gain any respect, people will think you're plain crazy. Being calm, cool, and collected - that gains respect. Loads of it.
- As for what you say? Well, you've just got to tell this person, STRAIGHT UP, to stop trying to embarass you. Say that it's not working anymore, that the attempts to try and humiliate your are becoming more in vain and ridiculous every time, and frankly that this person is making more of a fool of him/herself than anything. And you've got to be really confident, for the millionth time, and just leave it at that. If it persists, you cannot allow yourself to be hurt or upset. When the bully sees you are no longer affected, the teasing dwindles and you've got more people on your side. After being outnumbered, it stops.
REMEMBER: These are general instructions that worked for me. If you've got a different situation or anything of the sort, different actions are usually required. This is for your typical mean, gossiping, berating bully.

Teasing: Long-Lasting Pain
Depending on the persistence and intensity of the teasing, it can be life changing.
- You may not realize it, but teasing will start draining you of every bit of confidence you ever had. Every bit of self-dignity and assurance you've ever had in your decision making, appearance, from every aspect of your life, will slowly be going out the window.
- Eventually, if the teasing gets really bad, as it did with me, you can start to develop an inferiority complex. This means, basically, that you feel worthless in comparison to everyone else, and your mind will try to find compensation for it. It's similar to a thing short people have (no offense xD), the Napoleon Complex. To compensate for feeling smaller than everyone else, they try to accomplish big things and exaggerate things to make them appear normal and as "big" as everyone else.
- Ever since being teased, I've had a pretty bad inferior complex. The way I compensated was through perfectionism and self-berating. Nothing was ever good enough. I figured that if I was best in everything, then people would stop making my life a living hell. When I had one minor mess-up in ANYTHING, such as forgetting my homework or making a bad play in a basketball game or practice, I would berate myself for being so pathetic and worthless, and that if I ever wanted to amount to something, I better clean up my act and improve. I was always angry and loathed every fiber of my being. I remember last year, after coming home from a softball game and I walked four people from pitching (which, in reality, isn't awful), and I was so sickened with myself I cut. One of three times I ever did it. Sounds crazy? It's a result of a horrible inferiority complex, and it's incredibly, incredibly hard to overcome. Although not as bad, I'm still like that. I've been like this for five years.
- People also compensate for their inferiority complexes by turning into bullies themselves, when being placed into a new environment. Some people become shy and will try to separate themselves from the rest. Some people are overcome by that "inner frustration" and one day will just scream and beat the living crap out of someone, something I've seen happen to a good friend. Some people unleash that "inner frustration" by cutting and, in some cases, suicide. Kids have killed themselves who have experienced extreme forms of teasing. Everyone deals with teasing differently, but I can guarantee you that it's never in a positive way. Everyone who has ever been teased has this "inner frustration," because we feel like we're the foulest thing ever put on the planet. And people release that in different ways.

So here's a bit more info on the whole matter. I think this is a pretty amazingly enormously huge subject. What do you guys say?
Posted on June 19th, 2007 at 03:10pm

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