12 comments

  1. My experience with a bully tends to support David’s position. In seventh grade, I had a bully. I had no clue why he picked on me, but he did. For a few weeks it was verbal harassment which I tried to ignore, but one day after school he cornered me. He had three followers who obviously were expecting a good show. he started pumping his fists toward my face and challenging me to fight back. I think I was supposed to either throw the first punch so he could say I started it, or beg for mercy. Entirely without any thought or plan, my right knee came up and my toe went out and connected with his crotch. On his knees and rather pale, he did manage to croak out, “You fight like a girl.” His buddies stood there with their mouths hanging open. I got on my bike and went home. For about a week after that he did hurl some insults from a safe distance, but never tried to fight me again. I haven’t tolerated a bully since. I still don’t know where that move came from.

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  2. Like Bob, above, I was picked on at the age of 11 by a bully at school. After a month or so of taking it, I snapped and next thing I had him by the hair, smashing his face onto the playground. We had a real fight for a few minutes – vicious, no holds barred – until we were both dragged off to the Headmaster. He never picked on me again, and we eventually became friends. I’m sure that it was the only way that I could have dealt with it.

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  3. I was bullied by a stranger, a young man on the way to my music lessons, which I rode my bicycle to get to. He would stand in my way and try to block my passage through a narrow area. Afraid to dismount, I slowed and performed a very unladylike maneuver involving my bike fender and his spread legs. That, also, was a one-time encounter.

    However, I think the author downplayed the consequences. One of my nephews has a police record for striking back when he was in kindergarten. And we must realize that in the case of gangs and/or drugs, striking back can be fatal.

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  4. I was lucky to never be bullied, but I recall some kids picking on my younger brother. Finally my dad told him to hit back the next time. He did, and that was the end of that.

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  5. You won’t regret it if you fought back, even you lose, because you will remembered that you stood up for yourself

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  6. I agree with the author in this case; physical bullying needs a physical response. I have not encountered any physical bullying in my childhood, but my younger sister has. We were one year apart in school and I remember as early as kindergarten my mom used to tell me to look out for her. This really instilled a lot of confidence in me, because I was supposed to protect her and myself. I remember when we moved to a new neighborhood once, she had to walk to school without me and had an encounter with a few girls who taunted and shoved her. After a little coaching from me, she fought back heartily the next time, and it never happened again. Bullies are cowards at heart. To begin with, they choose the person they think is least likely to resist, and when the person does fight back they back off with their tail between their legs.

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