Bonding with the Bully: The Ties That Blind (Part 2)


Click here to read Part 1 in this series.

Bonding with a bully isn’t exceptional in grades K-2 girls, for they are freshly learning the ins and outs of friendships.  Our role as parents and educators is to guide them through the process.  We want them “through” it, because we don’t want them bound to a hurtful relationship.  We can help prevent or loosen the ties that blind.

A chilling fact is the five major thought processes that bind girls to a bully are the same five major thought processes of women who return to or remain in abusive relationships.

  1. There must be something wrong with me.
  2. There is something in it for me.
  3. This is normal.
  4. Who am I without this friendship (relationship)?
  5. This is comfortable.

What Can Be Done

It’s important to start teaching bullying refusal skills at an early age, so girls will have a lifetime to hone and practice them.  We do this to prepare and inform rather than scare or alarm.  Girls who know how to refuse bullying will have a direct impact on reducing it.  Here are the five factors necessary to developing bullying refusal skills in girls:

  1. Bullying awareness
  2. Assertiveness skills
  3. Positive self-esteem
  4. Exposure to healthy relationships
  5. Self-trust of what feels good or bad in a friendship

Loosening the Ties, Taking Off the Blindfold

Bullying refusal skills help prevent bonding with the bully and are crucial to a girl’s healthy development.  And they can help prevent workplace or domestic abuse in the future. Because when bullying feels comfortable or normal, you can’t tell the difference between what feels good or bad anymore.  And those are the ties that blind.

© 2010 A Way Through, LLC  

WANT TO USE THIS ARTICLE IN YOUR EZINE OR WEB SITE? You can, as long as you include this complete blurb with it: Female friendship experts Jane Balvanz and Blair Wagner publish A Way Through, LLC’s Guiding Girls ezine. If you’re ready to guide girls in grades K – 8 through painful friendships, get your FREE mini audio workshop and ongoing tips now at

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