I find it really sad that in this day and age we have to raise awareness for topics like this. The fact that this kind of thing just keeps getting worse by the minute makes me cringe to my core. We shouldn’t have to make space in our lives for bullying altogether nevermind cyber bullying. And yes it’s an actual thing. And it is something we need to talk about. Believe it or not there are people in this world who actually think that cyber bullying doesn’t exist and that people are just being snowflakes or that they can’t take a joke. I’m all for a joke and a good laugh, a bit or roasting here and there, making fun of certain silly things I do, it’s all a bit of fun. But then there is relentless bullying and harassment. People hide behind their computer screen or smartphone because they know no one can touch them and that they won’t get caught. There are many people who are insecure and who have been through a rough childhood, including me. And this is where we draw the line between being good and bad. The good ones are supportive of others in their journey, their bad times, their bouts of depression, trying to lose weight, their insecurities. The bad ones turn their frustrations toward making other people feel worse about themselves than they already do just so they can feel better about themselves. It’s all about power. They want to feel powerful and to have that hold over you makes them feel it.
As I have mentioned in one of my previous posts, I have been bullied quite a lot in life. It started mostly in high school and carried on throughout my twenties right up until about the age of 30 or so. Having social anxiety disorder and being the quiet one seems to make people think you are weak and it opens up a wide door of opportunities for them to single you out as a target. The online bullying started more or less round the age of 24 or 25. I got the latest phone that was finally able to go on the internet and i started talking on a South African chat site called Mxit. It was very much like Whatsapp where you could add your friends and chat with them but with added chatrooms where you could meet other people. Being someone who is a part of the lgbtq community I was hoping to find and make friends and I did. I met a bunch of cool people who I ended up meeting in real life and we had some really great times together. But then came the mean girls. Yes, I was just as confused as you are when I found out that there is bullying within the lgbtq community. Lesbians bullying other lesbians. They were all just racing to be crowned top dog. Nice ego boost you see. I always pictured these bullies to be the type that would get physical with their partners. Maybe not. All talk and no action. Their bark bigger than their bite. When I met them in person they would have nothing bad to say to me but as soon as I was back on Mxit it would all start up again. My self worth has diminished over the years. So much so that I didn’t and still don’t feel worthy of any kind of relationship with anyone (i’m working on it). Cyber bullying can affect a person so badly that the effects are long lasting. In other words, it isn’t something you just get over. You feel all alone and don’t feel that there is anything you can do about it. Luckily I am a lot smarter than most people think I am and the one thing that can really help is to stop going online, stop going on social media.
It might seem like an impossible task to do because we need social media. We need it to keep in contact with our distant relatives and friends we have accumulated over the years, if any. We need it to feed our curiosity about the news and what goes on in the world. We need it to entertain ourselves when we are bored. It’s a part of who we are. The problem is that we become addicted to it and that we use social media a lot more than we need to. We try to post things that make us feel positive about ourselves because we are finally gaining our confidence back. Then it starts. Again. One person mentions how fat you are and that you won’t make it past the age of forty. Then someone else agrees with them. Then another tells you that being gay is a sin and that you need to be ****** by a man to show you a lesson. Believe me I have heard it all. I even got negative comments when I had lost weight and was looking and feeling fantastic. Not everyone is every happy with how you look or what you do in life no matter how hard you try.
The impact of cyber bullying can be severe. And when I say severe I mean it can affect a person so badly that it can cause them to want to commit suicide. And many have. For this reason. It is something taht is so unnecessary. What bugs me the most is that most of the online bullies right now are children under the age of 18. They have access to smartphones with apps like TikTok and the like. I am not saying that apps like this are bad because they are not. I use TikTok as a way to express myself and to gain more confidence. But while TikTok has an age rule of 13 upward, there are hundreds of thousands even millions I guess of kids between 5 and 13 using the app. I can’t even tell you how many times I’ve witnessed online bullying by kids towards adults or even other kids in some cases. It’s all fun and games until someone ends their life. They don’t care because they don’t know the person and they haven’t begun to understand life and how it works yet. I even saw someone (an adult) post that being bullied should make you a better person and makes you stronger. I call bullshit. I have seen teenage boys tell plus sized women that they should jump off a bridge because they are a waste of air. Absolutely disgusting. It does make an impact but a negative one. It hurts people beyond repair. It makes people feel they are not worth anything.
But, I can honestly tell you that what these people are saying about you is not important and it means absolutely nothing. They forget about you just as quick and easy as it was for them to type their two cents worth. They are hiding behind a mask of pain and insecurities and most of the time they need to feel like they have power over you in order to feel something so that they can be someone. Your worth is not measured by some insignificant trolls comments or opinions of you. Your worth is measured by how you feel about yourself and what you put out into the world. We are all different and it is okay to be unique and it is okay to show the world that you love yourself no matter what others say or think about you.