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Centerpointe Research

I Thought It Was Just Me!

Somebody can be mean to you and can also convince you that you deserved it. Is this just bullying or can it be more sophisticated than that? Saying things like “This is for your own good or I wouldn’t be telling you this”. Some people saying they are just being helpful then why does it hurt so much? and if this is just to help you, why does it hurt so bad? Why as a result do you feel so shameful and like you shouldn’t go out till after dark? It seems like that everything you do out of what you think is kindness is taken the wrong way.

Don’t take this the wrong way if you really are just being helpful but if you are bullying then these comments are not so helpful and you are not just being kind. Then it is not just me. What is the long term gain of these behaviors? Do you wind up feeling better than the person you help in this way in some way? Do you feel it is important for the person that you are criticizing for their own good to feel shameful in some way? Then if not just shameful then guilty. Women are much better at playing this game than men. Men who just as soon just go ahead and hit you and leave your self-esteem alone.

Is feeling shame is less upsetting than having a black eye? Probably not at least to women. Now don’t go ahead and take this wrong way and let it justify physical abuse of women as if a slap or punch feels better than a “God D–n you Bitch”. Mental and emotional abuse are still forms of abuse. What do you get out of having the privilege of correcting someone? If you get any privilege or satisfaction out of it, maybe you aren’t doing it for the person’s own good?

What does it mean when someone says that a guy who is physically or verbally abused should take it like a man? When this is done to a woman should she take it like a woman? What does that mean? Does it mean that no matter how mean and nasty the lecture that the woman should turn around and apologize for something that they didn’t know was wrong? It is always for their own good. Then why does it feel so bad to them? How come it hit them broadside and maybe they feel that they didn’t see it coming.

How come the person doing it feels such relief after they let the other person have it? Worse yet maybe it rick-o-shayed and something hurtful just bounced off the speaker’s back and on to the back of the “victim”. For example, the man has a fight with his wife and then kicks the cat on the way out while grumbling at the cat that it was in his way. The perpetrator can be extremely dense and not see the relationship between being mad about something with somebody and taking it out on somebody else. Road rage often is the result of this as the person overacts at some slight offense on the road out of proportion to what really happened.

In the distant past, I used to get very critical letters from someone about my parenting skills. I didn’t realize at the time that this was happening. It is a form of scapegoating and the other person makes you feel bad so they can feel better. It is something like receiving a bomb like one of those exploding sacks dropped on your porch with poop in it. The problem is the size of the bomb and the length of the bombardment. There is no chance to recover as the bomb blasts come one right after the
other. If there is no bomb shelter, then you cover your ears and close your mouth and put your arms around yourself so as to make as little a target as possible. Also, it is not difficult to appear normal or better than normal for the bombardier when around other people after the blasts are over.

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