To Win or to Coexist?

By Aditya in Experiences
Updated 10:33 IST Feb 22, 2018

Just like there is no such thing as good and bad terrorism, there is no such thing as good and bad bullying. In my personal observation and opinion, during an argument, I see a lot of “counter-bullying” from the weaker (?!) side of the arguing groups or individuals. The difference in opinion can be on religious grounds or caste, between opposite sexes or those of differing sexual orientation or between cultural/political ideologies, basically difference in “choices” in every walk of life. This counter-bullying as I say is a form of attention seeking and/or an effort to garner sympathy and/or a calibrated effort to score a point and cause harm there off. I see all the three desired effects in a negative connotation.

While I completely agree that the side which is believed to be the original aggressor (no one can say that with certainty, but that is for later) does need to be made aware of the aggression and resulting discomfort, rarely do I see counter-bullying work. It just triggers a never ending cycle of vengeance. I am not an authority on this topic by any stretch of imagination, but I do feel that a bully is often unaware that he/she is being one and a tit-for-tat response will not make him/her aware of his behavior. I also feel that a bully and his/her behavior is a defensive response resulting from the experiences (mostly negative) that the individual has picked up during the lifetime, right from the childhood. So more often than not, the bully is actually endorsing his/her behavior (without being aware of it). The only way, and no matter how clichéd it sounds is to have a dialogue and demonstrate right values.

For a moment let us park the larger social issues and look close home at our own behavior and be true to ourselves. Do we have an element of bully within us or the counter-bully as I mentioned earlier? Has either of the choice been productive? Has it offered us genuine happiness or has it created increasing turmoil? What could we do differently to re-establish peace? We are living in a society where aggression is seen as a positive trait, it can be if you are at war or in a competitive sport or any other place where the aim is to win. But what about relationships?

Is the aim in a relationship to win or to coexist? Sadly I see a lot of people striving to win. In this pursuit to win or score, people bully, be it father to son (or the other way round), among friends, in-laws, couples, in all sorts of relationships we see some or other form of bullying. These days we are being hammered with this thought about loving ourselves first, and while it is fundamentally right, over indulgence in loving ourselves results in a extremely narrow view of life where we are least bothered or interested in people that surround us. My way or highway at any cost and if bullying is the way ahead, so be it. Nahi yaar, something is wrong, we are not a solitary species, we are social and better of that way, only if we choose not to bully. Only if we choose to coexist over winning at all cost.


P.S: This is a lose draft, but I intend to keep it that way. Maybe I am wrong in some of the expressions, and certainly open for feedback, as long as the intention is to coexist.

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Rucha Bindu 22-Feb-2018 09:31

This is a fabulous piece on bullying.
Please tag it with #BreakTheSilence

Aditya 22-Feb-2018 10:36

Thank you Rucha for the encouraging comment. Tagged as suggested.