I was terrified and ashamed and I did not know what to do, for much of my life. With the only consistent direction: “Be somebody entirely different (think, feel, want, and hate, exactly as we do) or fuck off”. My despair over not knowing how to do those things, manifested into behaviors that were bully like. Or maybe I was just mimicking what I experienced in my home life. Either way, I took that attitude and those behaviors out into the world, as the only ways I knew to be– until I found recovery. The intensity of my learned hatred for myself made me unkind. Today, I love who I am and how I live and love. I am so proud of my ability and choice to practice kindness as a way of life. I am rarely mean, and when I am, I promptly amend.
When I googled the definition of bully, this was the first result of my search:
noun: bully; plural noun: bullies
- a person who seeks to harm or intimidate those whom they perceive as vulnerable or threatening
seek to harm, intimidate, or coerce
I cringe to recall the many things said and done by me, with the intent to punish, exclude, dominate. I just did not know better. I believe that sometimes I am guilty of bullying one of my sons when I am feeling bullied by him. My behavior, is a shitty historical reaction and I apologize but cannot seem to altogether stop. What I mean when I say that I feel as if I am bullying him—is that I employ shame and guilt to try to control the situation, or gain the outcome I feel is necessary. I hate that. 100% unwholesome. My other default seems to be a coldish detachment from him, which is probably equally damaging. This is how I was raised. Yes, I am breaking the cycle one day at a time. But damn—it is taking too long.
My greatest fear is that my boys will practice what they are witnessing consistently, by the adults to whom they are related, and whom they are likely to emulate. My intent is to consistently practice and model for them, in hopes they will choose: to be includers and connectors, practice rigorous authenticity, self love but not self-promotion, and kindness– to see people struggling or disconnected and to feel desire and compulsion to lift and protect especially those in need of lifting and protection, to stand up to bullies, to not be bullies themselves, to never turn a blind eye. Breaking the cycle is much harder than continuing it. Very effing difficult.
They are spending time this weekend with people whom, to this day, attempt to bully me. I hate it for them. It is their ongoing experience to watch people get picked off and excluded for failure to agree or comply. I just keep telling myself…My job as mom, is to lead, teach, guide. But I desperately want to do some forcing and enforcing. Big surrenders today, every day. I am a work in progress.Much Love,
For shorter, more frequent and fun posts, connect with me on Instagram- wholesomebadass https://www.instagram.com/wholesomebadass/