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Showing posts from March, 2012

Why Do Bullies Bully?

As I wrote my post on being bullied, the question I kept coming back to was "Why do bullies bully?"

Most people dismiss it as quickly as they do bullying with a statement like "Because they can." or "Blame the parents."

That's not good enough for me. See, I don't think we can solve the bullying problem without addressing why kids bully. Yes, we can encourage the bullied to hold on and not let it get them down. We can remind them that life does get better. And, that's important. I applaud the It Gets Better Project for the work it does with that.

But, I want to figure out a way to encourage bullies to stop bullying. I think, sadly, it starts at the top. It starts with the leadership and media in our country, parents' attitudes toward others, and all the adults in a child's life.

Bullies are not born, they are made. We create bullies by demonstrating that it's possible to get what you want by belittling and abusing other people. We …

When Does Teasing Become Bullying?

This morning I logged on to Facebook and saw a link to Cesar Milan's video about his experience being bullied. He recorded it as part of the It Gets Better Project to give hope to children and teenagers being bullied. I watched it, and my mind started whirring.

First, I asked myself this important question. "Was I ever bullied?"

When I think of being bullied, I think of kids taking other kids lunch money, giving them swirlies, or consistently intimidating them with threats of physical violence. If I look at bullying like that, then, no, I wasn't.

But, there's another type of bullying. It's more insidious. It's the teasing, the taunting, the ostracizing, the meanness, the emotional and verbal abuse people heap on one another. Now, that I experienced.

There's a normal amount of teasing that kids do that often gets completely ignored or dismissed as "kids being kids" or even "character building" rather than bullying. The question beco…

Writers' Organizations: To Stay or To Leave?

I've reached a decision many of my author friends aren't going to agree with, but I have to do what's right for me.

I have been a member of several writers' organizations for quite some time, yet I've become to doubt what they are bringing to my life. Don't get me wrong, I think these groups are incredibly important for networking, making friends, and just socializing in general. Many even introduce opportunities writers wouldn't otherwise find.

I've decided to take a break from all of them, every single one. I am not renewing my membership in a single group this year. I need to reassess and figure out what is beneficial to my life and my career. Part of that is cutting away dead weight.

I have stopped participating in the online listserv for one group. Another group's newsletter stopped arriving, and I didn't even notice until it came time to renew the membership. The other thing I've realized is that for the most part, these groups haven&…

FREE Kindle Edition - Reflections in Silhouette: Poems

Today and tomorrow March 7-8, 2012), the Kindle edition of Reflections in Silhouette: Poems, is available for FREE! Check it out!

Jerks, Boundaries, Actions, Character...

My friend, Kelly, (yes, for those of you paying attention, I mention her often.) recently wrote a blog post titled Jerks Need Not Apply. I can't get her post out of my mind. I've read it several times. She links to an article that she quotes, but even better she shares her attitude from her dating days. She set boundaries that demanded she be respected. She provides a little speech she used to give to potential suitors. (Wow, did I really just say "potential suitors"?)

The more I thought about her post, the more I examined my own tolerance for "jerks" in my life. I've talked before about my inability to maintain lasting relationships as well as my struggle to set boundaries in my life. I began to wonder if perhaps, though I never gave such a speech, my attitude in my younger years demanded people treat me like I deserved or get out of my life.

In my single days, I had a tendency to attract jerks with a few notable exceptions (okay, three in total). I h…