The phrase “tough love” is one of the biggest oxymorons I’ve ever heard. Basically some people just like to be mean, so they just try to put a positive spin on it to make it look like they’re doing something good.
People have rationalized by being what they call “hard on someone”, that’s a good thing. You don’t want to be nice to people. That would be being “soft” And apparently being “soft” is one of the worst things you could do. They may as well just make a law against that. People spend enough time criticizing, berating people, and getting outraged about it. They’re obviously morons who are outraged by people wanting people to be nice to them and treat them with respect. Yeah, I can see why people would think that’s so “soft” and be outraged by it. People get pretty upset and defensive about their right to be mean and aggressive (or tough) with others.
If I express grievances about bullying like I do on this blog in person, some asshole will want to show me some “tough love”, and tell me to change my attitude, become a “stronger” (as if it’s weak to say you don’t want to be bullied anymore) person, not to be so sensitive, and not to take things personally. Well when someone is mean to you, it hurts. It’s demoralizing and beats you down psychologically. It is personal. You’re ruining their quality of life and being harsh with them. And they’re completely missing the point when they say that. It’s not even about whether the behavior is personal or not. It’s about whether it was right or wrong. Was it mean, did it hurt the person, did they deserve to be treated like that, can you do the right thing and talk to them or apologize? Meanness is still wrong whether it’s personal or not. The idiots also say don’t take things too seriously. So when someone is bullied, they are supposed to act like Krusty the Clown. For the person on the receiving end of the behavior, they are supposed to pretend to laugh to make the bully more comfortable even though they’re hurt or absolutely broken? There is nothing remotely funny about bullying and IT IS SERIOUS. It has serious consequences for the victim. And it’s a serious miscarriage of justice when bullies get away with it scott free (and they almost always do). Someone once told me “you have no sense of humor”. Well not about being picked on. What a sick fuck, to pick on people and then make it seem like a harmless joke.
It’s insensitive when someone confronts a bully or reports them and they just get told crap about “taking it too seriously/personally”. You just minimized the bullies actions and added salt the wound of the victim. They’re basically saying that the bully wasn’t wrong. The victim is expected to “take” disrespectful behavior in a way that is acceptable to the bully and others around him/her.
Bully Parents are notorious for being advocates of “tough love”. Well if they bully their kids, they obviously don’t really love them at all. Bosses who bully will do this too. They do it to make them look tough first of all. It boost their ego and reputation with some to feel/look tough rather than to appear “soft” since that would just be such a terrible thing. Being tough with others (even when unnecessary) is showing strength, right? I mean, you don’t want to come off as a “pussy”. You want show people you got the balls to be tough with other people.
Apparently, people think that it’s a good thing to “push” people to be what they consider an improvement. And people will make excuses for them too. “Oh, they’re just being “hard” on you or being “tough” on you to get you to do better”. No they aren’t. They’re being mean inappropriate assholes. Don’t try to paint a positive picture of how they’re behaving. And you certainly shouldn’t feed their ego by calling them hard or tough, because that’s exactly what they want to hear. I know there are some people that think it’s an “improvement” to be shallow, judgmental, insensitive, athletic, “cool”, and able to indirectly seduce women with strange indirect communication. But some people are more down to earth and authentic, and they LIKE being that way. Some of us like the way we are and reject the popular wisdom as far as superficial “improvements” that society thinks we should do. When you “push” people to do what YOU THINK is better for them, you actually just frustrate them, drive them nuts, waste your time, and end up pushing them away.
Also the assholes tell people that they are helping people in the long run by being tough or “hard” on them. “Oh it builds character, makes them stronger, keeps them on their toes”, etc. None of those things are true. The popular wisdom is that bad experiences make you stronger. Bullshit. When it comes to bullying, if anything bad experiences make you weaker. The experiences are only bad for you. Nothing good comes out of it unless the bully is punished and brought to justice, which rarely happens. There is no evidence or science that proves that horrible experiences that demean, humiliate, and traumatize people make people stronger. That’s nothing but horse shit society feeds you to justify the bad things that happen to you in life. People should be have empathy for others rather than this make-believe “tough love” crap.