Saturday, August 24, 2013

"Bullying", etc.

Once, a friend talked to me about another classmate who is now in Manila, who auditioned for the music channel MYX's VJ Search. There was a video posted in Facebook so people can vote, and she told me about what the guy said. He was  interviewed and asked what he was like in high school. He responded that he was "the bullied one". My friend found this ridiculous. As far as I can remember this guy, who I wasn't close to, he wasn't bullied. I saw him as the brash, confident socialite type. My friend and him know each other, and she found him fake and pretentious for saying that he was bullied when he wasn't.

I don't know the guy so I can't judge. What I thought of was, he was auditioning on TV. If he wins, he'll be a minor celebrity. Look at all the reality shows in Philippine TV. If there are auditions, there are also sob stories to stir the audience's emotions. Maybe the guy was trying to make a fictional backstory for himself to make his life sound more interesting. Or maybe he was really bullied, who knows. He didn't win, by the way.
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I wasn't bullied. There were times I was made fun of, that maybe counts as bullying, but they are forgettable incidents. I'm afraid that once, I was also the bully.
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The following is not about bullying, just a related topic. (My thoughts replay in my head. I feel like I've written it before, and because I go back to feeling down, I must convince myself again.)

There's this idea that we have to be grateful for those who point out what's wrong with us. Be careful, there's this kind of criticism that masquerades as "constructive", but when thought of thoroughly, doesn't make much sense. It might be a veiled personal attack. Or said person isn't really in a position to say anything -- they don't know your daily activities, or they judge you from some incident. They are the "goody bullies", because they seem be nice but actually aren't.

One really has to be careful who to listen to, because I've met some who are too glad to point out all your flaws. Listen to them, think about them, and if it contradicts what you know in your heart as true, I wholeheartedly encourage you to throw their "reviews" of you to the nearest wastebasket. Also, throw the negative person to a garbage truck -- in the imagination, maybe, not an actual truck. I'm not the most positive person myself, I forget my own behavior too. But there's enough anger and bad things in the world already. I don't like to add to it.
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One different, concrete example is my sister. She keeps on telling me that I'm fat, my nose doesn't look right, or anything bad about my appearance. One day, I was sick of it and told her, "Do you really need to tell me that? I'm struggling with insecurity already, not only in my looks, and your comments don't help."

Her answer was, "At least I'm being frank and honest in telling it to your face, not behind your back." Okay, she's 14, I can forgive her. But, frankness has its own right place, and I also honestly told her that I thought her reply was moronic. She was saying something else to me, unspoken, but the message was I just want to tell you you're ugly. She was assuming that in being 'blunt' to me, she was doing me a favor. So I told her I didn't care, and there are stupid opinions one must keep to oneself. It would help if she was saying something important, but what I look like? That is the most trivial and boring topic she can talk about.

Not that I'm having a huge argument with sister. I sound so serious about it here, but actually while we talked it was quite funny and we still laugh about it.

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