What is bullying?

Bullying is persistent unwelcome behaviour, mostly using unwarranted or invalid criticism, nit-picking, fault-finding, also exclusion, isolation, being singled out and treated differently, being shouted at, humiliated, excessive monitoring, having verbal and written warnings imposed, and much more.

I was bullied as a kid. I was bullied as a teenager. I’ve been bullied as an adult.

Each came in a variety of forms but it was bullying none-the-less.

As a kid:

In grade 6, I used to take the same street to and from school. As I’d ride my bike home, a girl my age, used to throw rocks at me. One day she pulled a stick out and forced me off my bike. What was my reaction? I asked her to my home to hang out and then I invited her to come with me to church. She came to both. As it turns out… she was just lonely and needed a friend.

As a teen:

From grade eight thru grade ten, I was bullied by a few girls who were a couple grades ahead of me. I remember being pulled aside on many occasions and given a stern talking to (usually to stay away from their brothers) while they gave their disapproving, condescending looks. Then they’d pretend like I didn’t exist. In a high school with only a couple dozen people (grade 8-12) total, it’s hard to miss anyone… They DID NOT like me! They liked to make me feel small. The trouble is… this was at a Christian school where the Principal used bullying tactics to discipline the students. We all attended the same Church which meant we all attended the same youth group. We spent a lot of time together! This was just one example among many that happened during my teen years. I struggled through this time with every thought from running away to killing myself. The confidence I had as a child was disappearing. To this day, I don’t think any of them know how they made me feel.

and it continued into adulthood:

Before I met my husband, I was in a relationship for a bunch of years with a bully. He emotionally abused me. He cheated on me. I tried to leave on many occasions but like anyone in an abusive relationship, you feel like your feet are made of lead. Repeatedly he told me that no one would love me, not even my parents. I wasn’t loveable. I was lucky to have him. He even “jokingly” told a family member that if I ever went missing, to look for me in his backyard {buried}. He loved to play, “Used to Love Her” {but I had to kill her} by Guns N’ Roses over and over and over again. I was afraid to stay and afraid to leave.

In the summer of 1995, I needed to get away from him. I took a business trip to Toronto and ended up meeting someone who would change my life… 🙂 It took many years for my husband to help me rebuild my strength.

Don’t be a bully!

It is impossible for me to watch any TV show or film where a character is humiliated. I grimace and squirm and turn away from the screen if I can’t leave or change the channel. Almost all reality shows are out for me! The combination of my history of being bullied and abused, mixed with my mercy heart has made me extra sensitive.

I support those who others wouldn’t, I stand up for those who can’t stand on their own anymore, and love on those who are seen as unlovable. I teach my kids, by example, to be compassionate, to think of others first, to be a friend to the friendless, and to love and respect all people.

Mercy triumphs over judgment!

I think this makes me a great Pastor’s Wife!

An open palm holds more water than a closed fist.


I'm the Cool Mom of 4, Married to the Preacher Man, but at times I'm a little more Sass than Saint!

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  1. I love how you've taken your negative experiences and turned them to the positive. If I was in the market for a pastor's wife, I'd pick you!

  2. Lovely Shannon, really well said. I think you're a great Pastor's wife too:)

  3. Good Morning.. Had to comment.
    Thanks for posting this. I was severely bullied as a child. School was hell for me being tormented non stop everywhere I went. I was different as a child was extremely obese, Guess thats what made me an easy target. I always say to people be careful what you do or say as Karma has a funny way of coming back to bite ya in the keester!!

    Many years later I lost alot of weight and have ran into a few of my previous tormentors who have I guess packed on what I lost. I have overcome my social phobias since way back when and actually feel bad for my old tormentors as I know what its like now that they are in my old shoes.

    Be kind Karma shows no mercy

    Fantastic post.
    Thanks so much for sharing 🙂
    Kevin from Linkies Contest Linkies

  4. Thanks for commenting Kevin. My dad always said be careful what you say about others because that's what you'll become.

  5. Your story sounds a lot like my story in so many ways. I really not think that some people can, or want to, understand how their words and actions can impact others. I'm glad that you have been able to find the positive and can empathize with what others are going through now. So many people who are bullied get hard and bitter.

  6. Great post! As the Bible says, 'A soft word turns away wrath.' Liked your testimony befriending the rock-thrower girl.
    Teens get proactive about bullying in this novel: Bully No More

  7. Yep I'll attest– you certainly care about how everyone around you is feeling. You are a very compassionate lady. You always have a kind word or a moment to chat.

    Guess everything happens for a reason?? So cliche, but would you have been the lovely lady you are had you not been bullied?? Hard to say– AND it doesn't matter really— NO ONE should have to put up with that!

  8. Shannon – I was thinking of writing a post about this just today – so this is impeccable timing. It takes effort to be a bully, and way less effort to be nice and treat everyone with kindness.

    Hugs Shannon – you are awesome!

  9. Great post, Shannon.

    As we've dealt with bullying for all 3 of our children now, this post is very timely.

    In every situation, thankfully, our children have talked to us about what's going on. And we can help them to see that the bullies are almost always the ones who are hurting, and the only way they know how to not hurt is to hurt others. It's about power and loneliness and NEVER about the kid being bullied. But how many kiddos don't feel like they can talk to their parents, and so they are left all alone in the struggles.

    Even with our support, it's STILL not easy for our kiddos because it's incessant. It just keeps going on.

    Thanks for this post. Well said!

    ~ Raylene

  10. You are awesome Shannon!!!
    And ya – I need a bullies suck t-shirt, good thing for Karma!

  11. I also think it makes you a GREAT FRIEND. So glad I can count you among mine 🙂

  12. Oh Shannon, I'm so glad I came by and read this. You are SUCH an amazing woman. I swear, I often talk about how smart and fun and nice (you are. Bullying hurts and the scars run deep. And yes, that picture is exactly why you make an excellent pastor's wife.

  13. So true! I'm glad those times are over.
    Alpine Dermatology

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