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How to Deal with Adult Bullies

by Kendall VanBlarcom

When people think of bullies, they often think of kids on playgrounds. But, the truth is that adult bullying is a real problem. Verbal bullying doesn’t end as we get older. Individuals continue to use bullying, at every age, to feel powerful over another person.

If you have been bullied, Kendall Van Blarcom is available to help you cope with any personal issues that are interfering with your day-to-day life.

Verbal Adult Bullying

Despite the sticks and stones saying, words can be hurtful. Too often, adult bullies try to make themselves feel more important or dominant by using language that is demeaning. It can be incredibly hurtful to the person on the receiving end and can even lead to issues with anxiety and depression.

Sometimes the bully themselves are hurting and in need of care. Some adults have difficulty controlling their emotions. So, if they are experiencing anxiety and fear, they lash out. In these instances the bullying may be unintentional but it can still be incredibly harmful.

Covert bullying is also a reality. This type of bullying can be harder to identify because it is more subtle than more outwardly aggressive forms of bullying, but it still exists. If someone is making harmful jokes at another’s expense or is intentionally hurting someone with social exclusion or embarrassment, it can have the same effects as overt forms of bullying.

What to Do About Adult Bullies

Usually bullies are picking on others they see as weaker so it’s important to stand up for yourself. Of course, this can be difficult to do. This may be particularly true if the bully is a family member, friend, or caregiver. These close relationships are not immune to toxic behavior.

There are different types of bullying and instances of this toxic behavior can happen in a variety of places within a variety of relationships. You can learn more about where it happens and how to respond by talking through the situation and doing research on the behavior. To learn more about why you are feeling how you are feeling, reach out for help.

And remember, you can not change another person or their behavior but you can take steps to protect yourself. If the bullying is happening in a workplace or structured environment, report the behavior. If it is happening in a domestic situation, let your situation be known by a trusted friend, confident, or counselor.

Recovering from an Adult Bully

If you find you are having trouble sleeping or are experiencing anxiety as a result of a bullying relationship, look into counseling to learn how to cope with the impacts of bullying. The impacts of these toxic relationship are real and unhealthy. It is important you take care of your own wellbeing and move away from the relationship.

Often, combining healthy lifestyle changes—from meditation to exercise—with professional counseling can help individuals to improve their quality of life in the aftermath of an experience with a bully.

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