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Bullying yourself

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I have a cousin who lives in the same house as me, and she takes after my step mother. She is 21, and often teases and makes fun of me for the flaws that my stepmother insults me for. She isn't exactly abusive, but she is mean in the way of high school girls. She circles you and finds your weak points and then uses them to hurt you. For me, her go-to is to insult my intelligence. So, for a while, I have been doing my best to beat her to the punch. This evening, my sister had been complaining about stupid people she had met at school today. My cousin told her that stupid people were everywhere. As soon as I heard that, I asked her what she needed because I heard my name. She then told me that if I embrace my stupidity I will never fix it. What I wanted to say was that according to my stepmother, you can't fix stupid. What I really said was, either I say it or you do.

I hadn't realized it before now, but I constantly insult myself. Whenever there is a way that something could be used to say I am stupid, I make a point to say something before anyone else can. I make a fool of myself constantly because it hurts less than when others do it.


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Hi @magdalene - don't put yourself down or allow others to do it either. You know you're not stupid or a fool - bullies like your cousin make themselves feel better by putting others down. Her opinion is worthless and you're a way more worthwhile person than she ever will be. Accepting her opinions just gives her power... you're better than that. Look after yourself and rise above. You can do it.
I can almost hear myself doing this when the drunk starts on me. A little smartassery can be really effective, but think about a different direction with it. Rather than claiming stupid, reject it! "You're safe here then. No stupidity in this house."

Just a thought


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I completely agree with the others. Take the power away from her don't validate it. The fact that you are aware of it means you can change this pattern. Even if you feel that you are stupid, which is definitely not true, remember it is just a feeling and not a fact. Our minds lie to us, then the reinforcement from other makes us believe these lies even more. Don't fall into her trap or put yourself down. You will always be better than her.


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I've been both the bully and the bullied. When I was the bully, I didn't realize it. But when people I cared about eventually told me that I was hurtful, I became more sensitive and aware of things I say. If you say something very blunt to your cousin, like, " Do you know that the things you say are hurtful and unnecessary?" she might be surprised to hear it. She might even change her behavior.


We either find a way, or make one.
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I use self deprecating humour all the time. There is nothing wrong in it whatsoever. But it can and does, leave me open to others actually using it against me. But I am old, so its water off a ducks back when anyone calls me stupid or dumb or fat or thick or retarded or any other label you can think of that is meant to belittle. But call me a Mackem and I will get upset [its a local thing].

You have that ability, use it to your advantage, not theirs. And I told you before, you are not stupid, you have a sharp wit, coupled with a hint of sarcasm, stupid cant do that :rolleyes:
For me it was a really twisted defense mechanism. I was bullied relentlessly for many years and was the subject of some horrible insults. I guess part of me felt that if I was the one to say those horrible things about myself, it would hurt less than if someone else did it.

It didn't work.


Everything Zen
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I'm always self deprecating as well. I don't think anything of it. I do it verbally to others and certainly in my head. A constant barrage of "you're so stupid", "You're a failure at everything", "why are you on this planet anyway", "you fucking suck", etc. When talking to others I just know they're thinking that I'm stupid or fat or hopeless so why not beat them to it. They're thinking it anyway. I'd rather get to it before they do.


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Over the years I realised that people that despise others feel shittier than the person they are insulting. They do that because they hate themselves in fact. Human who has low self steem normally do two kind of things: Or insult himself or insult others. I am, like many, the first type. So we have to focus on our vision of ourselves. We are our best friend. And as like a best friend, we have to love and accept each part of our personality. You don't have to insult yourself, you don't need that. At least you enjoy of the pain. But I think you don't like the pain, I think you prefer to feel better, right? Then, the only way is to learn how to love yourself. Or at least to try it.
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