You (YES YOU) or someone you care about will encounter a bully at some point in life either directly or indirectly. The three bully types: Clueless, Vicious and Flying Monkeys (who may be “Clueless” or “Vicious”) come in all shapes, sizes and ages. Sadly the worst type may end up being the closest to you.
Clueless definition: completely or hopelessly bewildered, unaware, ignorant or foolish, not having knowledge or understanding about something. Once a Clueless Bully is made aware that her words or actions hurt. She explains, changes her behavior and usually apologizes. A Clueless Bully doesn’t intend harm.
Vicious definition: very violent and cruel, very dangerous, having or showing very angry or cruel feelings. A Vicious Bully is fully aware his words or actions hurt you and not only continues to mistreat you the cruelty increases. Plus he’ll often use others to hurt you just like the Wicked Witch in the Wizard of Oz uses her Flying Monkeys.
“Flying monkeys” are people a bully manipulates into hurting his target. He’ll privately tell chosen “friends” how awful you are by disclosing secrets, twisting word, omitting facts, rewriting history, outright lying or by hinting with body language (sighs, eye rolls, muttering) or vague “you know how she is” comments.
Masterfully a Vicious Bully figures out who will make an easy monkey puppet. He also knows who won’t and avoids people he can’t easily use. Many times he’ll recruit other vicious bullies. Also he preys upon compassionate people who honestly believe they support an innocent person not a cruel one. Flying monkeys then purposely (Vicious Bully) and/or innocently (Clueless Bully) feed the bully current, old or second hand information about you.
Since a Vicious Bully discloses secrets, twists words, omits facts, rewrites history, and outright lies even a tiny bit of information including a simple head nod can be used against his target. Plus any info can also be used against the Flying Monkeys.
Worst case flying monkeys will spread the the bully’s words. Most of the time Flying Monkeys have no idea they are being used because they’ve been deceived into believing that the bully is the victim and the real victim is the bully. So the monkeys gossip about or shun the real victim which is exactly what the bully planned all along. Some Flying Monkeys know who the real bully is and contribute to the harassment for their own gain which is disturbing on so many levels. Meanwhile the target silently waits and hopes the ongoing attack will eventually stop. BUT it doesn’t because a Vicious Bully’s malice is insatiable.
In the Wizard of Oz Dorothy tells Auntie Em, Uncle Henry and the farm crew about Miss Gulch’s (AKA Wicked Witch) mean plans but none of them listen to her. Auntie Em says “Now Dorothy stop imagining things… you always get in a fret over nothing… find a place where you won’t get into any trouble.” Alone Dorothy ponders “Someplace where there isn’t any trouble? Do you suppose there is such a place Toto? There might be… It’s far far away.” Which leads into the classic movie’s iconic song, Somewhere Over the Rainbow, Dorothy knows the place is a myth but still has hope.
Throughout the movie Dorothy is predictably quiet, timid and scared. She doesn’t stick-up for herself. BUT if anything or anyone is cruel to someone she loves that’s when her courage appears. Dorothy stands up to Miss Gulch when she tries to take Toto away. She confronts the Cowardly Lion when he chases after Toto. She challenges the Wizard of Oz when he scares Lion. And finally she melts the Wicked Witch while trying to save the Scarecrow.
So if you’re ever under a Flying Monkey attack. Breath. Then find your inner Dorothy by discovering what’s worth defending. Do it not just for yourself but also for others. Be honestly brave because the second option of running, hiding, covering your head and hoping for the best simply doesn’t work.
Dorothy stands up to Miss Gulch when she tries to take Toto away.
Dorothy confronts the Cowardly Lion when he chases after Toto.
Dorothy challenges the Wizard of Oz when he scares Lion.
Dorothy melts the Wicked Witch while trying to save the Scarecrow.