Bullies Amongst Us

growm up bullies melindatoddHow do you deal with adult bullies in real life?

This topic keeps coming up everywhere I go. Clearly, the Lord is trying to tell me something.

How do you deal with someone who is rude, controlling, and/or degrading in your real life?

I’ve found it very easy to set boundaries online but when it comes into my sphere in the real world, I clam up and struggle with what to say and how to react.

We teach our kids to go for help when they are being bullied and most schools have a no bully policy but when it comes to adults, there is no help. If a class was offered on this subject, I would take it!

Several bloggers and I have decided to try and tackle this. You can check out Scarred Seeker’s post, Living With Bullies. We are looking for advice and guest posters in dealing with the subject of bullying for adults.

Do you ever struggle with this situation? Does standing up for yourself make you feel like a jerk? Please feel free to leave comments! Your input might help someone else – myself included.

Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone. Colossians 4:6



  1. Mel an excellent post, and like you I’ve felt so strongly that God is drawing me to this issue. Dominating someone, controlling them, using your spiritual, physical or emotional ‘muscles’ to cow or intimidate them is bullying. It isn’t always pushing people around on the playground, it is texting, and even on Facebook and in blog comments. Here, and at Scarred Seeker and most likely on Strawberry Roan as well I’m welcoming people to talk about this issue that seems to be such a struggle for adults.

    We won’t out grow it, bullying behaviour does not disappear with age! It is not just a kid issue, it is a people issue.

    Bless you Mel!
    Shanyn recently posted..Heart’s overflow

    • absolutely and yet, no one talks about it. It’s almost like it’s PC to be a bully but not to stand up and say, “Hey, don’t talk to me like that.” – Kids have adults to go to for help. Adults have no one because if bullying is going on, folks may agree with you, but they don’t want to “get involved” so they watch in silence.

    • Great response!

  2. Mel, I don’t know either. I encounter these folks all the time. It’s nice that there are those who will step up and be in charge of things but does that mean they have to mow everyone else down while doing it? I get so frustrated at church because there are things I’d like to do but I am not important or bossy enough and I get ignored. I think some of this attitude often comes down to cliques.

  3. Mel,
    I was the kid that was made fun of and picked on repeatedly growing up. So my insights on this topic come from not only learning how to deal with bullying but on how to overcome this issue…not only with people, but emotionally as well. One thing we all need to remember is that every bully is someone who has some sort of power, but is extremely insecure in their own life. Belittling and hurting others is the only way that they know how to have value in their own life. The second thing that we need to remember is that church and societal culture over the last 50 years has made bullying possible to the levels that it’s gotten because of the untrue philosophy of “if you can’t say anything nice, don’t say anything at all”. Nothing stops a bully faster than someone who stands up for themselves. And nothing makes bullying more possible than someone who doesn’t feel that they are allowed to defend themselves. Each of us has to ask ourselves this one question, “who determines our value?” Many people determine their value based on what other people think. Others determine their value on their self worth. The trouble with this is that setting our value on our own sinful nature or someone else’s sinful nature is that we devalue ourselves. It’s not until you truly understand that God created you with a purpose and regardless of what happens in your life, the value that God has given you remains constant. This same God created you with a body that protects itself, if you feel heat-you react to protect yourself. Why is it that when your body tells you that you are about to be hurt physically OR emotionally by someone, the church and society today tells you that you can’t defend yourself and hopes that someone else will fix the problem. Does this mean that if you accidentally burn yourself on the stove that you need to leave your hand sit there burning until someone else can come and protect you? Definitely not!!! The same goes for our interaction with other people. It is ok, Scripturally, to ignore somebody and walk away if they are treating you wrongly. I am sure this isn’t politically correct, but as a kid, it’s ok to punch somebody in the nose and tell them to leave me alone, as an adult, it’s ok to tell someone to “shut up and leave me alone!” Not because that’s what’s in your heart, but that’s what bullies understand. What we all need to remember, is that regardless of what society and churches teach us today about just being nice to everybody, the Bible teaches us that there is a time and a place for defending ourselves and others. There is a time and a place for taking action to protect ourselves and others. As great example of this: Was Jesus being nice when He took the time to build a whip and chase the “bullies” out of the temple? No, He was protecting His Father’s house and the people who were unable to defend themselves. Why did He do this??? He did it because He loves us. And sometimes loving people requires discipline and justice. And at the same time, He loved the same people He was chasing out of the temple. We, too, need to come to grips with the understanding that it’s ok to defend ourselves and STILL love someone and that God won’t take our “heaven card” away because we weren’t being nice. If anyone else has questions, feel free to get ahold of me at 241ink.org

    “Stupid Dyslexic Kid who is actually succeeding in the world, regardless of what everyone told him as a kid!

    • Geremy, thank you SO much for posting!! I really appreciate your voice and insight!

    • yes, thank you for sharing your insight. what hope does one have if their parent was a bully? Just thought I’d ask you.

      • Good question, Dawn! Regardless of who is hurting you, you need to remember that the only real and living hope is in Jesus Christ. Whether it’s family or not, you need to know that it’s ok to defend yourself and/or remove yourself from the situation to keep yourself safe. This does not mean that you don’t pray that God will change that person’s heart and action and lifestyle. Remember, nothing is impossible with God.
        Thanks again!

  4. Dawn – having a parent as a bully is a very difficult thing. A lot depends on the age of the person when they decide to start dealing with it. It took me many years to deal with my family bullies. It hurt, was difficult and they caused me to rethink boundaries and relationships. Praying for you and I invite you to keep in touch if you want to discuss it further. It is an issue that impacts us all!

  5. prima casa apartamente de vanzare

    Most times bullies enjoy to bully someone who fights back the same as the one who just take it in. I got out of it with humor, jokes with double meaning.. to make him understand that I am not afraid. So far it worked

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