I have had my first real experience with online bullying today.
First there was a not so nice message on facebook, but I responded kindly letting the person know that we had a difference of opinion but while I respect that I have the right to express my own opinion. The other person apologized and it was done (and after re-reading what I wrote about my opinions mattering and not being able to please everyone all the time I realized I really needed to start listening to myself more often)…until this evening when someone decided to start a thread on facebook calling me ignorant.
I don’t really enjoy being called names, but I can honestly say that while I was mad for a couple minutes I quickly realized that someone has to be the bigger person. If you want to attack me for a few like then you can go for it. You have the right to your own opinion as much as I have the right to mine.
Honestly, there are some names I would take offense to…mostly ones that would hit a little too close to home, but the person attacking me on facebook decided to call me ignorant…now that is a quality that depending on the situation I either whole-heartedly embrace with no shame whatsoever, or that I know really doesn’t apply to me. It isn’t a label you can hurt me with no matter how hard you try. For example, I know nothing of sports, but I am perfectly happy going through life without knowing what sport popular teams play or even what the popular teams are. Nice try bully, but you can’t hurt me like that…better luck next time.
The one thing that did upset me about it is that I have always felt that my school, while filled with a lot of immaturity, did tend to be a somewhat supportive environment for me. When people have differences oof opinion they usually work it out by talking civilly to each other rather than ignoring it or fighting. It really bothers me that a member of this community would choose to be a bully. I am thankful that she chose a target (me) that could handle it. I am glad to keep someone else from being beaten down, but I just wish people would be nice to each other. I was always told that bullying decreases as you grow up, but I guess that isn’t always true.