This is the continuation to my Adults Can Be Bullies Too blog of a few weeks ago. You can read it here.
In the blog I talk about how mean and petty grown women can be. I had some interesting comments on Facebook, and a few comments through the blog site. Now I need to tell you I have a Whackjob Stalker. She is using the name “Tanna” this time. This person likes to come up with bogus names and email addresses and send comments to my blog. She knows I won’t publish them under her real name. She has really pitched some fits when I wouldn’t let her tell “her side of the story” so she goes to pathetic lengths to try to fool me into publishing her comments.
I knew it was her because the IP address was Huntsville, AL and she has a distinctive way of writing that I recognize pretty quickly. So I published her comments just because I wanted to see how quickly the claws would come out.
Do you notice the “holier than thou” condescending attitude? And she tells me to look deep inside of myself so that I can help this person. Bullshit.
Helping a friend, someone that you have a history and investment in is one thing. Cutting a mean and vicious person out of your life is another. Yes, I would talk about problems directly with a friend. Yes, I would turn a blind eye and not be judgmental about human faults. I’ll put up with negative people. I understand depression and co dependency. But bullies have no place in my life.
Ok flash forward a few weeks. In the bully blog I alluded to a person that I felt I needed to “unfriend” because of some really mean comments she made to a friend of mine. Let’s call her “LF” There was a lot of stuff before that; things she said about me behind my back, the way she talked about my friends when I was with her, the fact that she made commitments to meet me then blew me off. I didn’t want a big confrontation, frankly she wasn’t important enough to me to bother with that. I’d only been around her a few times and I had no emotional investment in the relationship. It would be naive to think that I’m going to really like everyone I come in contact with. Even more naïve to think everyone is going to like me. I didn’t like the coarse and vulgar language, nor the revealing pictures she posted on FB, but I could ignore all of that. But when she viciously attacked a friend, telling her to “go shit in your hand” when she voiced an opinion in opposition to her, I had enough.
So here is a little story. It illustrates that no one is all good or all bad. It illustrates that people can do stupid things. It illustrates that grown ass women can be bullies. And it illustrates that real friends don’t turn a blind eye to bullies.
I’m the first to tell you that I can stick on a horse fairly well, but I don’t know crap. I grew up with horses but had no training other than a 80 year old horse trader that let me ride all of his horses. I didn’t know about natural horsemanship until we moved out here. I still get confused on how to tie a halter, and I don’t know how to do groundwork very well. We were so poor that I rode my Shetland pony bareback for two years because we didn’t have the money for a saddle.
I have never had a horse trailer until Steve and I bought one a couple of months ago.
I rode over to LF’s house on day in January to ride with her. We rode around the neighborhood and as we were coming back my horse Maestro slipped on the ice and went down on the asphalt. Skinned his knees and tore my saddle a bit. LF offered to take us home in her trailer so we wouldn’t have to ride or walk the several miles to my house.
I loaded Maestro. I had loaded him in her trailer one other time but she latched the door. This was my second time to load him. I put the lever across the latch but I didn’t know there was a pin that was supposed to go in a hole to secure the latch.
We started toward home. Now LF drove very slowly and carefully, she is relatively new to the whole horse thing and I appreciate the care she took. We had gone a couple of miles when a guy in a white truck came up beside us honking and waving. LF rolled down her window and he told us the trailer door was open and our horse had fallen out.
I cannot begin to tell you how my heart dropped and how sick I felt. My Maestro had fallen out?
I got in the car with the man and we drove back. There was Maestro calmly walking down the middle of the road towards home. What a relief. He was skinned up a little more, and the saddle had another gouge, but he was ok. Finally LF arrived, she had to find a place to circle around because she doesn’t know how to back up a trailer so it took a while. We loaded Maestro again, and she showed me the pin that should have been latched.
My sweet boy could have been killed because of my stupidity. I was really beating myself up about it. LF said “I wouldn’t tell anyone about this. The horse people are not going to be nice about this, they are all going to think you are really careless and stupid. I sure won’t say anything.”
Well she had a point, didn’t she? Did I have a responsibility to volunteer this information? Nope. So I decided to just keep quiet about it.
When Steve and I got our trailer I got a lot of instruction from him about checking the trailer, my responsibility as the driver, always checking after every stop. Believe me when I tell you I listened carefully and never rolled my eyes once. I’m absolutely paranoid about my horses and the trailer. I definitely learned my lesson.
Now here is where it gets interesting.
What do you suppose happened when I made a public stand about LF’s treatment of people?
Her friend BB made the comment that I should be sure and close the trailer door when I went to get my new horse. I have to admit, I smiled because they were so predictable. So I calmly blocked both of them and sat back and waited for the drama to begin.
The next day my friend told me about all the conversations going back and forth on FB between LF and BB about how stupid Michelle Cox was. Well, I’m not going to argue that fact. But the reality is I made a mistake. I didn’t know. And I would never hurt my horse on purpose. Everyone that knows me knows that, I don’t even have to explain. But these two were going to town on me.
You know what? I really didn’t care. I have no respect for the opinon of these two people and they just validated my feelings. Now my friends were upset and fiercely protective. And I love them dearly for that. But I was not going to give free rent in my head to a couple of shallow and mean women. So I went riding on my new horse with friends and didn’t give it another thought.
When I got home I got a call from another friend. She had written a scathing condemnation of the two, calling them out by name. Then Tanya did the same. And boy did I feel loved. I love the way these women rushed to my defense. I tried to explain that the comments were expected and couldn’t hurt me but that didn’t matter. They were pissed. Because I was just the last in a long line of people that LF and BB ridiculed and attacked.
Ok so what is the point of all of this?
What do we tell our kids to do if they see someone being bullied at school? I tell my daughter to try to step in to stop it. And to report it. And you know what she says? “Mom, if I do that then they turn on me and push me and call me names”. When I reported some of the problems Keely was having to the principal he wanted to make sure the bully didn’t know it was Keely making the complaint. Why? Retribution from the bully and his friends.
I have a thick skin and wasn’t worried about the mind games and attacks. I’m certainly not physically afraid of either of the two women. But it takes a lot of time to get to that place.
I think we all have a tendency to not want to rock the boat. We might not like the way we see others being
treated but if it’s not being directed towards us we let it slide. Yet we tell our kids “stand up to bullies!”
Kind of hypocritical isn’t it?