Your dating a great guy. Yeah, he can be sweet, fun, generous and have a great sense of humor. There's just one little problem — sometimes he acts like a bully. With October being National Bullying Awareness Month, it's good to know what to watch for and how to handle this importnat issue.
Your boyfriend's bullying behavior might include:
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- Raising his voice
- Belittling your choices
- Refusing a simple request
- Not able to let go of an argument
- Calling you names
- Never apologizing for his behavior
Let's face it — when the guy you are dating acts like a bully, it can be very intimidating. It seems like he loves you and most of the time you get along well. Yet, there are times when the bully shows up and you wonder about the choice you've made. Dating a bully can chip away at your self-esteem and confidence which is never good for you or the relationship.
Dating a bully comes with its own set of problems. You may freeze up or suppress your own needs and give in, doing things his way to keep the peace. This is a natural reaction but can allow resentment to build. You might also feel aprehensive as you want to brace yourself for the next bullying episode.
When the guy you're dating becomes a bully, what can you do handle the situation and retain your self-esteem? Below you'll find six suggestions to help you navigate these emotional waters and potentially turn things around.
1. Decide you will not be bullied. Making this decision to no longer be a victim is very empowering. From here you can start to take steps to address the bullying behavior or focus on self-preservation.
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2. Let your boyfriend know you will only talk to him when he is respectful. Don't bring this up in the middle of an argument. Say something when things are calm again. Tell him that he needs to speak in a regular tone of voice and volume, avoid name calling and listen to and consider what you have to say. He can't fight with you if you won't play his game.
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