Stop overusing the word “bully”

I meant to post this earlier.  I am ashamed to admit it, but I watch the Bravo TV series Real Housewives of Beverly Hills (RHOBH).  One of the main story-lines from this season has been the discord between Brandi Glanville and new housewife Joyce Giraud.  By the way, I know reality TV is very staged and made-for-TV.

On a trip to Palm Springs, Brandi called Joyce by the wrong name (Jacqueline) and made some other attacks that are too monotonous for this blog.  Long story short, a catfight ensued and ultimately Brandi was being referred to as a “bully.”

The show portrays her as an obnoxious, mean-girl, but I think the use of the word “bully” is a bit much.  Bullying is a serious problem in this country.  In the above scenario, both of these women were on equal footing, so the use of this term is inappropriate and undermines the seriousness of the problem.  Sometimes, people don’t get along and don’t like each other.

I am so sick of the word “bully.”  Fit Mom and the Duck Dynasty guy have both recently been referred to as bullies.  While they may be insensitive, they are not bullies.  The second that somebody has an opinion that is unpopular, he or she is a bully.  We aren’t even allowed to disagree anymore.

Children have been bullied so badly that they have become depressed and/or committed suicide.  Look at Jonathan Martin.  The word “bullied” should not be used for mean-girl drama, spats, and one-time teasing.  It undermines the seriousness of the problem for the people who are really suffering.  Don’t devalue the meaning of the word.  If everyone is a bully, then nobody is.

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