Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Panda Bear on Bullying, the "Popular" Kids, and the Hierarchies

The Panda Bear recently ran into a classmate from her elementary school. This classmate asked the Panda Bear whether she friends her entire elementary school class. The Panda Bear said she was not friends with Anne whom she remembers as being mean to her in elementary school. The Panda Bear reconnected with someone else from elementary school on Facebook who also had bad memories of Anne.
Over the past few years, the Panda Bear has told people who knew both her and Anne in both elementary and high school that Anne was mean to her. It wasn't until she was over forty, that the Panda Bear begin to talk to people about who was mean to her in elementary school. The Panda Bear once saw Anne and at their twenty-fifth high school reunion. The Panda Bear was so tempted to go up to Anne and ask her how she was doing. The Panda Bear was with Mr. Panda. Anne in elementary school called the Panda Bear a lesbian and made fun of the Panda Bear when she went to her first dance. However, the Panda Bear lost her nerve. She was not sure if Anne saw her at the reunion.

However, the Panda Bear and Anne have some mutual friends on Facebook and sometimes the Panda Bear has put her blog posts on her personal Facebook page. The Panda Bear wonders whether what she is writing will ever get back to Anne and whether Anne will recognize herself.

The Panda Bear looked up Anne on Facebook and found out that Anne had joined a Facebook group that wanted to end school bullying. The Panda Bear looked up this group and found this article that stated it was the "popular" children/tweens who were the bullies. Bullying is by definition the strong picking on the weak.

The Panda Bear remembers Anne has being one of the "popular" girls. She belonged to a large clique and was wealthy. She acted as though she was the coolest kid ever and wore expensive clothes. The Panda Bear thinks that because Anne was wealthy the teachers were afraid to discipline her.

From her experiences with workplace bullying, the Panda Bear has come to a conclusion that there is a hierarchical nature to bullying. Workplace bullies can't abuse their superiors and keep their jobs. Workplace bullies take out their frustrations on people whom they feel they can get away with it. The Panda Bear feels work place bullies have enough self-control to know how to hide it,   Therefore, she little sympathy for workplace bullies.

1 comment:

  1. I have never gone to a high school reunion! That's so funny you were called lesbian. So was I. In their defense, I was a pretty good target since I was the only girl I knew who had a motorcycle back then. I don't think the rumor was ever that serious, and I barely knew what onew as then, so it was the least of my problems at that time, really, the bigger one being a AA cup size.

    I did have one girl who was in the group of girls who harassed me and my friends apologize when she ran into me a few years later. We went out and had a drink, but that was that. Anyway, it was a nice gesture. I know why she did it. She was this girl who but for her very ski-slope nose was beautiful. It was an extreme feature, so I'm sure she had endured her share of teasing as well and had some empathy. When I saw her years later, she had had it fixed -- and I didn't recognize her!