What Every Target of Workplace Bullying Needs to Know

Surviving Small Town Bullying

by Rosalea Hostetler
(Harper, Kansas, USA)

In early May 2011 a member in my brother's family was allegedly murdered in a nearby town by her law enforcement officer husband and the home was set on fire in an attempt to destroy the evidence. His fool proof plan for murder that he bragged about wasn't adequate. The FBI was called in, and he was arrested on suspicion of murder, arson and child endangerment. The trial is pending.

Encouraged by her family to do so, his wife was afraid to file for divorce because this chronic bully threatened to kill the whole family if she left him. Finally, she could endure no more and she filed. After the papers were served she was dead within a few days, leaving behind two little boys without their caring mother and a psychopathic father sitting in jail.

This tragedy has opened a deep wound in my own life, causing me to again deal with the flashbacks of four decades of law enforcement and other "authority" mobster-type bullying that has destroyed my hopes and dreams to preserve our very rare historic downtown. I am not alone. Numerous people are coming forward and sharing their small town bullying stories. It has been painful to learn that countless "authority" in small towns of the prairies are terrible bullies who get away with it because there is no other authority for the victims to go to get help.

The limited selection pool for qualified, ethical, educated, intelligent leaders compounds the problem for small towns in rural America -- the more qualified have moved away years ago. It is a disgrace that the Attorney General throws these severe problems back onto the citizens of the community who have no training or conscience to deal with the horrors. Our Attorney General will not help with any violence in small towns until someone is murdered. This death is a case in point.

Because of the many years of personal targeting I have endured by small town bullies, I have become an acute observer, aware that there are many types of bullying in addition to law enforcement and leadership (authority). One is the Judgmental Bully who tries to make every bullying victim they meet into their particular brand of religion which they claim will prevent them from being bullied. When a person is cornered by this type of bully filled with the power of naivete, they can't even enjoy a meal in peace without being hounded. Never mind if you remind them that they are preaching to the choir, it does not stop them in their vain glory to make you knuckle down on your knees on the spot so they can gloat at "winning for the Lord" or other spiritual leader. One homeless big city man I know says he always plays their games as it means a free meal. He doesn't recall how many times he's "been saved" or "saw the light," but he's overweight.

There seems to be few attempts at reprimanding a bullying attacker in our small town which of course gives a blessing to every bully to use innocent people as a target. Surely, small town life can be hell unless you stay to yourself, live in abject denial that there are any problems, or booze it up or pop so many tranquilizers you don't sense a thing. Once a therapist told me that only 5% of the people are worth knowing, those who have truth, honor, integrity, and are reasonable. This knowledge, plus the advent of the Internet, has helped me much in providing an invisible wall of protection for emotional and mental survival by the inordinate amount of bullies I've encountered.

Another category I've identified is the Social Gadfly Bully, the gossiper who bullies by lies and name calling, to the point the victim's reputation is ruined forever. Social Gadflies would not consider themselves bullies at all but their chronic gossip can emotionally destroy innocent people. I support exposing evil, illegal actions and wrong doing. That is not gossip -- that is a must for the healing and growth of a viable, healthy community. It is how society learns right from wrong. But the Social Gadfly Bully is the great manipulator, playing up to anyone and everyone in order to pit people against one another. Malicious gossip causes a great deal of damage that has destroyed the heart and soul of many prairie communities. Without a doubt, these Social Gadflies have intent to fabricate and manipulate people as their avatars, to destroy without remorse in this insidious manner.

It is next to impossible to rally people broken by years of bullying and intimidation to embrace the courage and integrity that it takes to defend and support victims. Until a day of support arrives, a victim's life in small towns is going to continue to be hell on earth unless they are able to move away. In reality, it is the bully who ought to move away but they are constantly placated by the good ole boy/girl law enforcement and leadership power network so they can get way with murder (literally), so why leave?

What are the answers for restoring hope, respect, peace and honor to the lives of victims who live in small towns? By educating ourselves and supporting scientific researchers and mental health professionals who have joined forces to do studies on the brain patterns of bullying (psychopaths who have no conscience or remorse), we can help bring a cure to this terrible ill. Researchers are also uncovering that the bystanders who see bullying or other wrong doing, and do nothing even though they know it is hurting others, have prefrontal cortex abnormality, too.

Published articles state the day will come when a way will be found to correct the damaged part of the brain that makes people respond in these unhealthy ways. About 30% of all prisoners test out as a psychopath while the general population tests at only 1%. The cost to society to incarcerate the psychopath is enormous, not to mention the inordinate damage they do to their victims. Adolph Hitler is a premier example of an unchecked psychopath. And the German people who sat mute and watched him exterminate the Jews but did nothing are like the populace in our small towns who do nothing when they see evil destroying the lives of the innocent.

The damage in the prefrontal cortex of the brain that causes one to be a bully is generally considered to be genetic but can also be caused by substance abuse, a hard blow to the head, home/school environment and/or devastating childhood events. The most sensitive period for a bully-in-the-making is about age eight, with boys more likely than girls to adapt to bullying behaviors. Group therapy makes the anti-social behavior worse. One-on-one therapy can help but does not necessarily eliminate it.

Until the Attorney General accepts the extreme severity of psychopathic bullying in our city halls and law enforcement and what it does to victims plus the domino effect it has on our rural communities, the best we can do is recognize a bully as a person with a "dangerous disability" and remove ourselves from them as far as possible, refusing to interact with their wily charms, lies, lack of remorse and wrong doing.

Copyright Rosalea Hostetler 2011

Comments for Surviving Small Town Bullying

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Re: Keep Moving
by: Anonymous

Since you are privie to information with the boycotting, the things done against our family with innocent young women at risk, you are no different than those who you named. Standing up for yourself is everyone's right to have.
Do you know who shot my husband, as that entire investigation was wrong in so many levels. From suicide to murder it is so wrong.
Can you step forward in any way?
Did Bullying turn to murder?
You responded to an anonymous article, mine. You named the town, state and actual names, I did not.
Vengeance is mine says our Lord.

Kenton, Ohio
by: Anonymous

Kenton, Ohio. Most everyone in Kenton is a bully who grew up either in the same house they are in or just around the corner. The town is failing around the very people who are causing it to fail. This is a really scary place to be and have to be around the people is even worse. I've noticed after living in many places around Ohio, the majority are all the same. They love to be boring and brag about sports and bully others into their degenerate beliefs. It's really, really scary.

Re:Exhausted
by: Anonymous

My Heart & Prayers go to you. What we are promised is not an easy path, strength is ours. I struggle daily with this. My husband was murdered in a small bullying community.
God does seek his vengeance, you are a child of his. Faith is on your side, hope is on your side. Prayers do get answered.

Response to Justice Prevails
by: Anonymous

Praying you respond
You know something, someone, the who, what, where and why, possablity is there.
Why was Law Enforcement paid off, why did you want us gone?
Why no Justice? Why no vindication? You know come forward.
Prayers for you. Prayers for those who acted on this.
God is Awesome, He will have Justice, He Vindicates, His Love is Enormous.
God knows the who, what, where,when and why.
God knows all.. So you won't escape, you are the one who lives with this evil that has been done.
Keep writing Justice Prevails...
Write until you feel you cannot.
What has been done is now in Gods span!!

Small Town Misery
by: Tyler

In the past 9 years I've lived in two small towns in the NW corner of Missouri. The first town, Bolckow, now declined to less than 200 people, seemed the worst. The bullying, true to the nature of the coward, was never to your face like a man. It consisted mostly of constant harassment for any city code violation, while much of the town was mired in squalor and filth. Another favorite was to kill someones dogs, either by shooting or deliberately running over them. Yet another favorite tack is to sic the legal authorities upon you, you will be financially ruined fighting ludicrous charges to stay out of prison. They ran my sister out of town in this way.
Over 4 years ago I left due to a house fire, and bought a home in the town of Albany, population now declined to 1700 souls. It seems even more toxic here, outsiders are treated with disdain and indifference at every turn. Things like mechanic work or even a simple interlibrary loan, they will treat you like dirt until you give up and go elsewhere. I was actually screamed at one day, "you're not from here, you better take that to heart!" Legitimate complaints are ignored, you have to fight tooth and nail for issues such as blatant light trespass to be addressed, appeals to common sense or courtesy fall upon deaf ears. Going over their head if possible to a state agency is the only way. Here too they will also target your dogs, last year the family dog of a sheriff deputy (who was also an outsider) was shot, ran over, and the children found it dying in their yard. It was because he'd arrested a local for meth. Also the children of outsiders will be ganged up on and assaulted, and there will be complete indifference shown by the legal system. My neighbor has twins, 16 now, the daughter was knocked unconscious by an attack from behind in the school cafeteria, she was suspended for longer than her attacker. His son was jumped by several people, his jaw was broken, the sheriff wouldn't even take a report.
It goes without saying the ignorance, judgmentalism, apathy, rampant drug and alcohol abuse combined with economic stagnation and dwindling population have wrought havoc in this region. I hope to soon sell my house, and I will never again reside in a small town. I can understand completely why the late Marvin Heemeyer destroyed large swathes of the small town of Granby, Colorado.

Exausted
by: Anonymous

I ended up in situation where I had to move in with my mom with my new baby into a very small town and that alone was where the hell began, I am a fish out of water to say the least all because we decided to raise her together. I can't tell the whole story, but the attack that I have been under has deeply hurt my child who 10 years later has only had one friend over once to the house to which this little girl felt compelled to my child something bad another little girl has said about her. Every time I think things are getting better for her I find out situations that she's getting involved in with other girls I know because she will do anything to have friends which scares me to death. The worst thing to me about this type of bullying is that often it's under the table and it's almost impossible to confront when people don't say what they think to your face. It just comes out in much darker ways, a glare when you're at the store or you walk into a church or your child's school, a glare that you can't prove.People can feel what they wish about me but it's often the children who suffer the most. I feel like I am a fight for my child's life and the bad influence this place has had on her. If I could move tomorrow I would. If I do try to defend myself it does no good because people just say worse things about me which has even affected me getting and holding a job so I just avoid everything and let her grandmother take her places where we live. I have given up hope for me. after a decade of this, knowing that I'm being slandered, I am exhausted, have gained 40 pounds, am more introverted then I have ever been and always have this message that I am just being punished by God and that it's all my fault. I never knew this world could be so cruel. I am trying to move my life forward but people won't let me and my faith is struggling and I hate who I have become. Small towns can be so wicked and it's often at the hands of people who are the head of what ever charity and they can be the worst. I just try to believe that vindication is in Gods hands but it's hard not to see it. I send prayers out to anyone that may be going through this and I also know that I will never, ever be a part of doing this to someone no matter what I hear about them, it has changed me deeply. Slander is slander true or not and it destroys people and I don't think a loving God would want that.

Raymondville texas is a nightmare.
by: Anonymous

All my life i have been mentally disabled but never knew. I took ritalin throughout elementry but stopped in middle school i don't know why, in middle school i made all kinds of wrong friends,people who say they saw my Gf at the time changing clothes or have a secret with her,another friend filmed my Ex at highschool while she was with her new bf and asked if i wanted to see (while laughing and smiling), her bother would say my ex looks so happy with her new bf. I dropped out of school because i'm not mentally capable of learning, i tried for my Ged but gave up there too,after seeing my ex again and 1 child later my ex filed for child support even though she's raising our son from scratch with her new bf and i have never held a job before. My son had surgery for an undescended testicle, i have a left undescended testicle which iv known since i was a kid and doctor physicals but for some reason i never had surgery recommended, i'm 25 and about a year ago a lump developed and now it's about the width of a marble. I feel this town and my life is orchestrated for me to commit suicide. Until a couple months ago i never went to get proper medication for my behavior, within that time i already yelled at people passing my house for no reason, developed the syndrome where i become angered if someone looks at my face. For sometime i have tried my best to stay normal but my town has so many people that rev their vehicles past my home purposely,throwing trash from fastfood place in my street, throwing fireworks,honking loud horns and honking continuously as they pass, burning out in a pothole to kick up rocks towards the home. People around here even have made online profiles with my name and picture to talk to my gf or anybody i know. Regardless of my town seeing that i'm mentally challenged they put me down through these methods everyday. I was arrested for pushing a sibling(before meds) and after i came back, one of the same cops came while my family was away and asked if a missing child was in my home. It couldn't have been coincidence, and while being jailed the cop that took me shook hands with the jailer and said "another day another dollar". While arguing with my mom (before meds) somone called the cops and said i had a knife, they took me shirtless to jail and i didn't get a bath till my 5th day. There are mechanics across my street which after i displayed my mentality(before meds) have not stopped taunting me since,they yell my sons name, they make sexual moans and scream the word "yeah" to set me off. It has become so bad that my neighbors kids literally started imitating the mechanics laughter near my windows to anger me, all the children that pass my home copy those men and make sexual moans and scream as they pass by. I have been on medication for a couple months now but i still need financial help, even then i feel i'll just buy a gun and just end my life. My ex does the whole (My son) bit when she's angry. I feel my doctor appointments are set months apart to give me time for me to mess up(suicide, jail,)anything to stop me from succeeding in applying for benefits. I haven't been with a female in years. I feel they will just be like my ex or i'm not mentally capable of female interaction anymore. I haven't been able to see my son for more than 24hrs out of his 5+ year life so far. If god exists he's most certainly not in my life. i wore white everyday, read the bible but then i heard my ex is going to receive benefits for our son, i fell into a deep depression where i was dumbfounded and speeches for once in my life. I believed in god so much that my life could change through him so i promised i would circumcise myself and i did the same day,1 pair of scissors, 1 bottle of cologne, and something to bite down on. I spent days bleeding in my room, one day i could smell the iron in my blood and i realized that it was like a male menstrual cycle but once in a lifetime and a delirious experience from blood loss. Weeks to a month or so passed and i was free, i healed completely and felt impowered but my disability reminds me i'm no human, i'm not worth it, i'm no child of god. After reading a story or two it helped comfort me. I'm sorry if i'm off topic and i'm sorry if I'm not enough to save a life. Including my own.

Jindabyne, NSW Australia
by: Anonymous

Local tradie
Spreading nasty/false rumors
The dickhead involved has two previous jail terms
Atempted murder and stealing
the dickhead spends all non working time in the ... Hotel drinking and dragging his family around his beer garden in the ... hotel (1-5pm almost everyday)
Using drug dealing to finace his ice addiction as well as his career in plastering and tiling he ... encourages his dodgy mates to yell abuse from bars as well menacing people with dangerous, life threatening ute driving. Been a local ... he thinks he is above the law

Sad and isolated
by: Elizabeth

Wow. Thank you SO much for this article and for the comments which I am still reading. It is so comforting to read that I am not alone. I now live in a very small town which I am told is recorded as the most inbred town in Australia. I couldn't write here the many, many attacks I have been under. My car, house, garden and character have all been attacked. I, like others who have commented here, am apparently a threat to the women. EVERYTHING I do and say is a threat to them and I have only done good. Even doing up my house and garden is a threat and they feel they own the house I bought. I had a woman come and warn me that there was 'a lot of jealousy and be careful'. Women have also told me "I've heard something about you." When I asked what, they wouldn't tell me. So nasty. But there is also dangerous male psychopaths here and if I was to walk in the town at night, I don't think I'd stay alive for long. I'm serious. I had someone working to repair my house before I moved in but all my belongings were here. MANY of the town's people felt completely free to walk into my house and look at everything. Someone came and warned me that a very dangerous man had been in my house with the repair person the entire time - the police (another town) confirmed that he was dangerous. There is so much more I don't have room to tell. 'New comers' who have been here up to 15 years have no friends within the town. I am open and friendly and hard-working and very community minded. None of that has helped. In fact, it was ALL very threatening to them. There is also horrible cruelty here to dogs and children. I have done everything I can to help but it only makes you more enemies. I just sit and cry along with the neighbours dogs who are kept on very short chains in a flee-ridden icy mud area with nothing in their kennels. I have to stay here for the rest of my life. Australia's economic state now is extremely bad and there is no new employment and much employment has been shut down or given to people on temporary work visas. I just have to continue to do the best I can. I am very, very isolated and don't know how I'm going to survive.

Small City Blues
by: Anonymous

I moved to a small city on the coast of New England . Not long after was I targeted by a group of older women in my social circle . First it was just a couple women trying to bully me because they were threatened by me . I am in my single and in forties and a fun and a free spirit . I get along with people and am outwardly social . I started dating a guy that some of the other women liked and it all began . Soon I was hearing stories of how some of them didn't like me , that I slept around , that I was not a good person . As time went on this group of three women turned to 10 women who are constantly talking about me . Do they not have lives of their own ? Am I that interesting that I am the topic of conversation years later ? I hoped it would die down but no , one of them actually cornered me and told me I should move . Another one has been getting mutual friends to stop being friends with me . Telling lies and getting a gang mentality going . I am watched like a hawk and they all gather together if I'm at a place where they are at and the stare and whisper and try to make me feel uncomfortable . It is really disheartening to see such behavior . After reading other peoples stories mine does not seem as bad . I'm sorry for all of you . I thought bullying was childs play but apparently some adults can't look in the mirror and better themselves . I have many other friends but I can't say that these peoples behavior isn't destructive and I'm just tired of having to put on armor to go out . So I will continue to hold my head high and unfortunately they will probably set their eyes on someone new .

You don't need to be a newbie
by: Anonymous

I live in a small town that is mostly related to each other. I grew up here and moved back after college to be a living example of how to work out of poverty. I am sorry I came back.

I bought property with a mobile home near the park. There were trees between the park and my house. After three years I built a house. They continued to develop a ball field in the park, despite the fact there wasn't enough room. One aunt and one uncle continually told me that they were here first and I couldn't keep people off my land. Balls bats and lights all changed over the years. Every time I said something, I was laughed at and told it sucks to be you. All of my yard was being used for fly balls. The lights make my yard seem like day. They paid kids with candy to get the balls. They trampled my gardens. The alley by my house became the warm up area, so they were always in my yard. An ATV trail and a snowmobile trail were put through the alley (it would have been fenced as playing field if they had the space). Then they started mowing on my yard and doing fireworks that drop waste in my yard.I was told I was selfish when I complained.I was told we are a small town and need to all get along, but they don't have money I am being told it will always be a ball field and I should move. The people involved are my siblings, cousins, aunts, uncles and people I grew up with. These are members of my church. They have no understanding of the damage they have done to me. I have run sobbing from church. I have cut ties with my family. I live with fear all the time. I don't trust people. I have little ability to say no. I also wonder where I can live in the state of Wisconsin and not have snowmobiles and ATV owners disrupt my life.

Midwest Response
by: Anonymous

The truth prevails.

Whitinsville, MASS. 01588
by: Anonymous

(Northbrige) same name as Whitinsville, MA., 01588. Small town politics at its BEST.

Board of Health are jealous, malicious, vindictive people who thrive on power... they go out of their way to screw you. "friendly fire" is a way of life for these sick individuals. Stay away from this town.

They actually fined a business owner for not fixing a roof leak fast enough! (during bad weather)... sick, sick stupid deceitful people.
Stay away from this town.

Board of Health health people co-opts other town authorities with alleged malicious violations which are NOT true to target individuals.

Sick people stay away from this town.

It happens in Sweden too
by: Anonymous

I am so glad that I've found this page, it's so nice to know that there are people out there who care about these kinds of problems.

I was born in Stockholm and me and my family moved to the country side eleven years ago. The first 13 years of my life we lived on an island in the Baltic Sea, and we were being bullied from day one. My parents are from Stockholm and they are friendly and kind and work hard. They engaged in the community and tried to help out. But it was in vain, because the ones that were born on and lived on the island had already decided to hate us. So there were false, mean rumors, name calling, and a lot of ostracize. I was also a victim of this in school. It went so far that we had to move. So we moved a very long way away and found a very small village in the country side of the South of Sweden where we could run our new dream business. In the beginning they only talked about us behind our backs, thinking we were crazy big town people who wouldn't last long. But now, eleven years of hard work later, we're successful and many of the neighbours hate us. They have destroyed things on our property, tried to forces us to not walk on the different paths and ways in our village, they've yelled at us, they've spread false rumors and they too have practice ostracism. We don't know what we've done wrong. We've been kind, we've helped, we even helped to raise a lot of money via our business to the local history society, but we didn't even get a "thank you". They just complained.
So what could we possibly have done that made them hate us so much?
The only explaination I have is that they suffer from what we in Sweden call "The Swedish Disease" - jealousy. They can't stand that we're successful, that we have a nice home and a beautiful garden, that we as a family are very happy together, that we try something new and dare to stand out and that we like to think in a new and different way and not to live like in the old days, as most of our neighbours do. They are mostly farmers and except for when they "compete" with each other on who has the most expensive tractor, they live exactly like they did in this village 200 years ago.

We are planning on moving to a new place where we have no neighbours at all, but we haven't found that dream place yet. We have reported the damage they've done on our property to the police, but as we all know, that doesn't lead anywhere. The Swedish law enforcment is pretty much useless. So until we find that dream home, we just have to keep on standing up for ourselves and try to survive for another couple of years. At least they haven't attacked us or any of our pets physically - yet. But if they do or tries to, we won't be kind and forgiving anymore. It has come to that now. We are so sick and tired of this bullying that really started for no reason at all.

It's Not Worth the Drive to Acton
by: Anonymous

I am so-o-o-o-o glad that I have found your website. It is proof that I am most definitely not crazy, and that I don't have an overactive imagination.

My family and I moved from Oakville to Acton in the early 1980s. Almost immediately, we were the subject of racial prejudice, constantly called "pakis" and "niggers" due to our dark (by hicktown standards) skin color. On my first day of school during recess, one teacher asked me whether I came from South America - in front of her students. A teacher counselled me to wear more provocative clothes, fix myself up (saying bluntly that I was unattractive and would never get a man) and dumb down (as in preparing to become a secretary or cleaning lady instead of a college-educated professional) so I would be the stereotype of the promiscuous Latina. Again, I did not want to be someone's piece of meat!

And, don't get me started on small town gossip. I was never religious. But once we moved to Acton, I was forced to attend Mass (we were nominal Catholics) because my own parents heard rumors circulating around town that I was the devil. During religion class, I told my teacher that I didn't go to church and had no plans to remain Catholic into adulthood; the God-fearing students then told their parents, who then told them to stay far away from me. Why? I did not smoke, drink underage, sleep around, use the "f-word" to excess, hang around Main and Mill streets at night, and use drugs. Other Acton kids did that. Also, there were only two kinds of teen girls in that town: those who were teen welfare moms and those who will be. Any girl who didn't marry and have kids before she was allowed to vote in Canada was either considered very ugly or a lesbian.

Because I was considered different from everyone else, I was targeted for bullying. That went to the point in which I was afraid to go out for recess, and showed up at school carrying concealed knives for protection. One day when I tried to defend myself, I was seriously injured - and, then, my school told my parents that I had a behavioral problem because I overreacted to those "nice, peaceful small town kids"! The same teacher who asked that inappropriate question about my cultural heritage even went so far as to say that I was mentally retarded (I had an IQ in the low gifted range) - and reported me to child welfare authorities, alleging child abuse from my own parents! Vile.

The damage those hicks cause has long been underestimated. I suffer from PTSD, anxiety attacks and depression to this day, and I cannot form close friendships or trust others. I will never live in a small town again, and I long resolved never to raise my kids in one because I didn't want them to go through what I did. (I broke up with a boyfriend just after college because he wanted to buy a house in, of all places, Acton.) I find city people nicer, smarter, and do not thrive on gossip and innuendo.

Old-timers in Acton still think that I am a violent pathological liar. I don't have a criminal record, live in an upper middle-class neighborhood in the city, earn a middle-class income, have two college degrees, and am certainly not fat, ugly, uneducated and stupid. Those hicks can go to hell - give me the city way, anyday.

Being bullied at work
by: Anonymous

I work with all men. One of them texted me outside of work stating he wanted to sleep with me. When I said that was never going to happen, he proceeded to spread sexual lies about me to our coworkers. My boss also began harassing me and after many emails to HR requesting intervention, nothing was done and now I am now off work on FMLA having been diagnosed with Acute Stress Disorder. The coworker bully physically threatened me at work and now he and his friends are continuously driving by my house. I'm a strong, self sufficient single woman. In my opinion, men who bully women only demonstrate how desperately insecure they are in additional to the mental issues this article states.

Me_Too_Maybe?
by: L.B.

It is comforting to read these stories, because it is easy to start feeling down on yourself. I'm not certain if I'm experiencing bullying or not, but it just seems like it. I have a lexicon of strange coincidences and events that have happened to me where I live, but it may just be a coincidence of another kind and not malicious. First, a couple of years ago my father was aggressively approached by a 'panhandler' at a convenience store. He said they guy seemed unusually aggressive about it. Most panhandlers are not because they don't want the police to be called. This has never happened to my dad and he is a nice man. Around the same time, I was jogging in my neighborhood and was stopped by a police car. The policeman said that I matched the description of a "panhandler" they knew about it and he received a phone call about me. Somebody saw me jogging. I was put in the back of a police car and driven to the house that supposedly made the call. No one came to the door to verify, and he let me go. The cop talked to me very aggressively and was not civil. I thought I recognized the description of the guy that panhandled my father (but I can't be sure). Ironically enough, I kept running into this individual and it's unlikely that I would. Once I even walked in to where this person worked and bought some shoes. I had no idea that the guy worked there or I wouldn't have gone. Later, I'm at a restaurant with my family when this guy suddenly walks in with his entourage. It was during a thunder storm and the lights went out in the restaurant. That was erie. I've never been in a restaurant when the lights went out, and the fact that the guy was there, gave me the creeps. My mother has always complained about being abused at her job. She's got countless stories. And they are very religious here. At the very least, my mother is not of their religion. I went to one job interview and suddenly the security system went off like crazy. And I had to wait even longer for them to deal with that. That was in the next town over. The land lord lady told my mother that when she was considering renting the apartment to us, that her phone rang off the hook asking her not to do it. Who was calling her? credit score people maybe? (because admittedly my mother has made poor decisions with credit in the past) outside of that I don't have any idea who would be calling? who the hell is calling? I went to another job interview and as I was standing there, the guy got a phone call. He comes back reads my resume and says, "oh, the last person I was married to had your last name." My last name isn't that common, so I'm thinking, what are the odds that, that would happen? Coincidence? My mother is a rather shy person so I always believed it was her shyness that would make a jerk abuse her at work. I wonder if that is the reason? My father also, loves to discuss politics and he is a bit of Democrat. He is for the 'little guy' right. He is known for this and this area is very much a republican party area. I myself, have no acquaintances here and unfortunately neither do my parents. I'm afraid that we do add up to be good targets for bullies and to be railroaded out of town. I would leave gladly, but I don't have the money or the job. And I'm too concerned to just run away. I also do care about my family.

From south to north-bulllied in the midwest
by: Anonymous

Right around the end of my first decade of life my family moved up north from Texas specifically to the Midwest, ever since then I have seen the worst of bullying and been the omnipresent "easy target" even to today.

My mother says it was the worst mistake she ever made..and we should never have moved because like me she is also the victim of small town torment for not being born here.

I am not sure if it was my accent, my medical issues, my height, my tiny body (I still get teased for), my courtesy, or something else but for some reason I always end up being targeted by the small town monster machine for punishment for no reason in not one but two towns and on my college campus.
It never seems to end, and it only seems to occur when interacting with people from the Midwest for the most part.

I have experienced not just workplace bullying but outright employment potential sabotage and discrimination, I just acquired my first job in five years and it took five years due to employment discrimination and defamataion of my character by TEACHERS from my high school who just can't stand that I defied all the horrible things they said to me and about me over time.
Though I have yet to get over other things done to me, and the mere mention of one teachers name is enough to put me into a panic state at times.
And yes said teacher and cronies are pillars of the community so untouchable, and nobody believes what they did to me happened at all.

I only got the job due to pity, and I am harassed and bullied there, often told part of the job is too complicated when it isn't and generally being the butt of jokes despite going to college and maintaining Dean's List honors I am relegated to "happy idiot" status.

I try my best, and trust me it is hard considering I get little help and suffer from long term medical conditions as well as PTSD from years of bullying but I never seem to do enough to warrant being treated as an equal.
Talked to as if I am mentally incompetent or a child all I can do in response is be polite and courteous though I did snap a touch the other day because of the emotional pain.

Why do I put up with it? Because I need the money to pay off college and move away back to my home city, and considering this is my first job in five years and my first in seven that was in this town I can't afford to risk losing it.

That is what they count on, in a small town everyone knows if you are working or not and where you work and unfortunately are fully within their power to hurt you and will.

If they can't keep you unemployed and you are a target they will find a way to hurt you at work, and yes the trope of the attractive ones doing this is all too true one of my current tormentors who spreads lies about me to co workers and my supervisors is a attractive young woman who also works at a local hospital and yes she has never had issues getting a job.

The scary part is that the bullying in this town though horrible is nothing compared to the last one I lived in. Where for example a violent pack attack was not only denied, never prosecuted fully, but the culprits got away with near murder when everyone knew who they were.
Because they were not attacking en mass a already severely traumatized child, no they were "preemptively dealing with a monster" never mind that said "monster" was nothing of the sort.

The attack itself was actually covered up by the law officials and the city, partly because a few of the culprits were children of high level town officials. Today you will find no record of it anywhere, not even the case my parents tried to make in court.

The records were "lost" just like my many job applications in the current small town I live in when I apply at local businesses.

I am scared I will be fired every time I go to work, I can't get over the fear of losing this job and not being able to pay for my last semester and get out of here. It is a very real fear, not only because people at my workplace are openly bullying me and being encouraged to but because bystanders are aware of it.

In fact a bystander at my work has started running interference, I found out through her some of what was being said about me...she mentioned back to one tormentor "well at least she(me) is nice" which is true.

I am nice, courteous, friendly, outgoing, and hard working I balance my new job, college, chores at home, medical issues, and more and I do it alone with the help of coffee n the morning. People who visit this town are/were shocked I was unemployed, just as they are shocked that some locals retain their jobs despite certain horrid behaviors.

But to be able to move I must keep my job, to do that it seems I must put up with bullying because I can't really complain to my supervisors when everyone views me as a joke, and besides I can't risk it I really can't.

I am also blacklisted as un-dateable in town, of course based on what I have experienced I am unsure I would want to date anyone from here at all..all I want right now is out.

Accused of Attempted Murder by a Bully
by: Anonymous

I travel extensively but due to many factors, I was forced to move back to my small hometown after many years abroad. A woman who I thought was my friend did not take responsibility for her own wreckless behavior and because I was present during her accident that can only be blamed on herself, she has accused me of attempted murder and is trying to sue me for everything I have (which is lint in my pockets). There's no evidence that would allow the case to go criminal and an ambulance chaser who was deceived into thinking he'd make big bucks took her case. I've received harassing phone calls, have had my name smeared across the internet and throughout the town and have even had my life threatened. This woman and her puppet master (who puts her up to everything) are making my life hell and I can't afford to move because of the lawsuit. The most I can hope for is that the courts see that this woman is very sick in the head from years as an alcoholic sex worker who can't take care of her own children and eventually throw the case out.

Ellettsville Indiana
by: Heather

I have been gang bullied by the local yokels here and in the neighboring town of Bloomington. The good thing is, I am not the only one there are tons who have experienced these psychopaths so I am not alone. It's pathetic and ridiculous. They are so ignorant it truly blows your mind and all they are accomplishing is giving their towns poor reputations as there are numerous people who have experienced it. They are just to stupid and malicious to control themselves.

Being bullied
by: Anonymous

I couldn't have stated this any better. I am surviving being bullied in a very small town along with my three innocent children. I find ourselves drowning in a cesspool of hideous , sick mentality of a community rich in immoral, abusive individuals. My kids and I are constantly - daily - being ridiculed, judged, harassed, slandered and all if the above . I am made out to be 'crazy ' for installing security cams and a Doberman as a result of my home being routinely broken into. Cops turn their heads and everyone laughs. I am so utterly disgusted that a community let alone any single person would unleash such barbaric tactics on an innocent person let alone knowingly doing this to my kids - any kid for that matter. Resources are very limited for support and help - Lewis county Washington- where bad behavior is rewarded and stalking, peeping toms and burglars are rewarded and innocent people are alienated and made out to be the crazies. I don't get it.

ghetto by the sea
by: sussex u. k

In last year been being gossipped mobbed or gang bullied. It began when I when hungry was rude to builder who attempted to attack me. Two weeks later a very large builder from the same site approached me at the site and suggested I was attempting to sexually approach some girls whom I was simply talking to . I ran and he chased. Saw him next day where he told me to leave town. I knew I had done nothing but I had no idea of how much danger I was in. As a photographer I had recovered from a combination of physical and psychological problems by simply walking through the town taking photos. This builder seems like most english builders in the pub. The town on the coast is dying so people drink and gossip but normal people can not afford it . I have become a figure of hatred my life and future ruined. People stare at you.cross over whisper just loudly enough. I am writing this with a dark heart when a whole community calls you the worst thing and the look in their eyes . I want to smash all the pubs . Day drinking alcoholic nasty small town know it all but. the same timenothing have made me give up on my life. I do not want to leave and the professional says people always talk but I know I have tohit out but I can not fight every one. I think it is a form of disabled discrimination. I dont work or go to pubs I guess I am am outsider the police dont get it. When I said words can make someone want to end their life. The police man said not to rattle on. So english builders with their racist fat cant read books coke head blonde bird stupid loud mouths I hope you die choking down a super fry up . I am not proud of being english anymore certain media here encourage just being a selfish bully who likes a fight maybe its a war thing but I think after writing this I shall leave. Remember this if ya got s---t for brains it tends to be what comes out when you speak. Also avoid england on holiday visit ireland or only visit london for a weekend. Take care and if you fight back can get legal aid while slander is hard to prove

DISEASED ANIMALS in LANCASTER, HERSHEY, LEBANON & SOUTH CENTRAL PENNSYLVANIA
by: DANIEL E SHAFFER JR

My name is DANIEL E SHAFFER JR. I was born in the inner city of YORK PENNSYLVANIA & raised by an extremely poor working class family. I joined the US ARMY in order to escape poverty. I earned 3 honorable discharges(88-96 & after 9/11 03-05). I a 3rd generation US ARMY Vet. I earned big 10 degrees in SOCIOLOGY. I am a SOCIOLOGIST. I am a former counselor to children & families.

My victimization took place in the area's of Lancaster, HERSHEY, Lebanon & South Central Pennsylvania extending down to Delaware. I was a vulnerable outsider to the community with very little social networks. These diseased ANIMALS went on me like WHITE on RICE.

Some of my experience of being Workplace mobbed & community based harassed are on the following website. Link Here.

If you get a chance please sign the petition & check out my experiences of being mobbed/harassed, slander, black listed & the victim of a terrible HATE CAMPAIGN.

I did filed WHISTLEBLOWER complaints:PHRC Case No.200800802 & EEOC Case No.17F200960329 against Harrisburg Area Community College in Lancaster Pennsylvania. 70+counts of harassment/discrim. 5 qualified SOCIOLOGISTS, 1 history Prof & a HOMOSEXUAL ex-marine were mobbed/harassed, discrim & forced out between 2006-09. All replaced by community based garbage: RELATIVES(Nepo-discrim), Friends, Members of the same religion(Religious-Discrim) & Freemasons(Kult-Discrim). This is now being reflected in the media.

You would think these diseased ANIMALS would help veterans out. Not this place, the local, state & Federal Jobs are an entitlement to those in the community of Lancaster, HERSHEY, Lebanon & the area's of South Central Pennsylvania. Any job receiving federal or state funds expect to be pushed out if you are an outsider to the community, An US VETERAN or anything else they set their sights on. Expect to be set up for failure, not train properly and then mobbed/harassed & then discriminated against & forced out. Expect it, if you are an outsider!

How are these HATE CRIMES(JEW BAITING & COINTELPRO Tactics) & HATE CAMPAIGNS helping vulnerable outsiders to the community, JEWISH WOMEN, WHISTLEBLOWERS & US VETERANS? respectfully DANIEL E SHAFFER JR.

Social Mobbing
by: Anonymous

I recently resigned from a very public job in a town of about 5,000. Having gone through a difficult divorce that was finalized in Dec, I admit that I was an emotional wreck. I also was struggling from vertigo that would make me clutch the side of my building when I walked.

I was accused of being a drunk and for lying about my ex. I did finally get a restraining order.


The ugly spirited ones mounted a smear campaign. Oddly enough my office and car were broken into the same time. Computer files altered.

I just quit. I don't want to be part of this unhealthy dynamic.

Bullied in a Small Town
by: Anonymous

I am so glad to have this website! I am in a small town & this is one of few sites/people that understand what I'm going through. Once I became a Controller at a small town plant as a single mom succeeding & not from this town I started to become bullied in the workplace & town. Jealous, immature women!!!! I have never dealt with such immature women. No matter what I did it was a set up to get rid of me cuz I went to college, got work experience & did a great job at work & became a licensed CPA & the two girls born & raised here never went through all the hard work I did to get to where I was. People liked me, I did extraordinary work pleasing the boss & they hated me. It soon became a social mobbing as rumors and lies were used to turn others against me & it was all a joke these girls smirked at me with! I was asked to resign & had to leave a $100k job 10 miles from home ready to get my son through college. Oh yeah - & these girls's sons weren't smart enough to go thru college so they were not going to watch mine get to go. So take her job away & actually her whole career. The one bully is the HR & born & raised here with no other threats but me so no one believes me who she really is. Just got my kitchen remodeled & my house how I want it & I don't want to move. But you would not believe when I got a job 60 miles away from a town one of the 6 bullies grew up in that they started doing the exact same bullying games there too! It's like they knew I could sue so they wanted me to look like the problem & if it happened somewhere else it must be me!!! But thanks to facebook I know there is a connection to cover the company's reputation. I now I feel like I'm going be bullied out of this job cuz they are all way older than me & I was hired to do the work they weren't capable of cuz they dont have the experience or education I do so they dont like me cuz they dont feel superior to me. So why dont these girls just grow up & realize there is always someone better than you! & you just cant lie & rumor about someone cuz they can do something you cant!!!!! Go to college & do the work we have done!!!!

Small Town Jealous Women
by: Anonymous

I am also in a small town & am enduring bullying from jealous women every day driving me out of town. I feel the Devil is alive & have never felt such evil & hopelessness in all my life. They have had to spread lies & rumors taking away my high paying job I had earned that they were jealous of and keep turning people against me from insinuations or lies. Every thing I worked for for over 15 years has been taken away & is affecting my kids. I am discriminated against for being a single mom leaving an abusive relationship & I, unlike they, have never had affairs or steal, but I am the one accused of exactly what they have done & yet no one believes me but they believe these women who were born & raised here & I wasn't so I'm not believed. They torture me everyday with inside jokes using innocent people & won't quit. They quit once they took away my job, but once I finally got another job 60 miles away, since ironically every time I applied for a local job it was denied, they started back up. Totally correlates to jealousy. Years ago when I worked out of town & no one had any idea what my job title was, everyone liked me. Once I worked in town at a high management level, not being fat, not being ugly, etc., they tore me apart. If others would stop falling for their lies, rumors, and control, it is the only way to stop the bully.

Keep Moving
by: Anonymous

To the people who had a business where the town chased you off... They did.. A group of them got together and decided to take the business away from you and your family. They had every intention of that from about a year ago. No one here really cares about you or your family. This is what they do here and no one will ever stand up for you and your family. The local law enforcement was paid to come to your home and make false statements against you and your family. The ones at the front of this are the ones in the first part of the head of the business that they virtually took from you. They don't want you in Newman Grove, NE. they want you to move back where you came from so they do not have to see or hear you want the truth told. No one will ever help you to have the truth told. The Floods the Kings the Adams are totally against you and do not want you there, no one will ever help you to have you vindicated. They will do this until they have total control over the town even with the churches. Just move away to a place where liars are not living, good luck with that.

I won't be going.
by: Susan

Yeah, they've done rumours about me. I've had people passing comments in street, kids shouting across, people screaming from cars etc...
Basically these people are 'gang stalkers,' a crime that is becoming more recognised now.
It is really just a more advanced form of bullying.
These stalkers have tried to slander me out of my community. But I won't be leaving for some psychopath. I stay put, and with my husband,
and I am not going anywhere. Community needs me as witness in case this Jezebel decides to go and hurt somebody else.
So I have to stay put - as potential witness - you understand?
They can threaten me if they want, makes no difference.
I won't break up a lifelong relationship for a piece of trash.
My home is here, and I have a good reason to stay.

Mid West Deciept Blinded By Satan
by: Anonymous

Moved 2007 from the coast area believing a better way of life to the Midwest; the bible belt, surley there is faith of great multitude.
Two years later, a woman business owner, steak house, old building left for dead forover 18 months, not one community member was interested in taking on the venture of restoring this place while giving her a lick and a promise, elbow work goes a long way.
Make no waves, opps did, went to public council meeting, asked for law enforcment, new mayor was only in office 4 months, condmended from old members, boycotted started that april and went from there. Dont like my menu, prices, my flavor of cooking, from scratch, could serve 90 in this old joint.
Community did not take a liken to my husband, long haired merchant seaman, myself, greek, 2 daughters.
Next you call out a mistake, opps was given 10 dollars too much change at a minit mart took it back and was called a theif, wow, really they dont do buiness with me know.
First I was ripped off from my friend of 25 years for about 2000.00 she admitted it, then 12 days later moved away and parents bailed her out. Then refused to see eveidence I have to prove the crime, redirected the talk about town on them to accusations of my husband stealing his own money,.
Staff was much to be desired so you took what you could, lets call her juana, and his name phlix, she stole, from business, chased off business, he committed fraud was proven, they turn against me, boycotted by them also and their friends, the mayor also boycotted , really a mayor in their own town, local businesss joined in, this ran like wild fires. Our business did fund raisers for the school, many of them, in two years, had community functions, supported what we could, paid and joined what we could,
Finally the boycotting was so bad we had to sell, for such a small amount just to pay off the banks and mortage holders. The real joke of this all is that over 30 investors and ones who even boycotted us, bought into this busines that we restored for this community and our selves, and we were not good enough, the rumors that have been started and gossip with lies about our family, is so cruel. To be bullied out of a community is the worst thing I have witnessed to this day in my life, not the entire area, but enough to cause you to loose your livelyhood, your financail ability to support your famiily, and the saddness about this is my husband is very ill, terminally ill, 2 daughters and I am the sole support. I am a good woman, not an angle but I have great faith, in God, Jesus and the Holy Spirit, and we were cast away like trash to this community. I will never stop praying for them as what control do they have to bully a entire family.

totally agree
by: Jayne

I read your article and the comments with a heavy heart and tears in my eyes.
We live in a small town in Greece (I'm British, my husband is Greek) I made the mistake of befriending a French woman (also married to a Greek) and suggested she moved into the apartment above us, so her daughters (1 same age as my youngest) had company and they were closer to the schools etc. BIG MISTAKE!
Little did I know that my act of kindness would change mine and my daughter's life so greatly. It started by her daughter playing with every child apart from mine (who is a nice child) Her daughter then befriended my daughter's best friend - and proceeded to push her out. I heard all this (with my own ears) and thought (as we were friends) I would just nip it in the bud - WRONG ... I was that my child is no longer wanted by her best friend or her mother and I was told to find her other friends - this French woman then proceeded to befriend every mother in the neighbourhood and spread untrue rumours about me. No one has heard my side. I could handle all this if my daughter wasn't involved. But unfortunately when she befriends the mothers - she steals the kids as well and invites them to her house (upstairs) and excludes my daughter therefore leaving her without friends.
My daughter made a new best friend and I thought we were safe as the French woman described this childs mother as a bitch and 'hated her' - BUT last night they were at this woman's house for a meal! My reputation is ruined by her - which is doubly hurtful as I own a children's clothes shop and NO ONE from her group shop there. I wish I could turn the clock back ... it was the worst decision I ever made in my life!

Bullying Education
by: Jay

I respect the fact that you are helping to bring awareness to parents about the dangers of bullying. I currently blog for blogaboutbullies.com and have been trying to educate parents about certain programs that are available to help protect children in the cyber world. Personally I use a free service called Mousemail, but there are many that parents that are not techonologically savvy. Blogs like yours will help spread awareness to a threat that many parent are unaware of.

To: Rosalea
by: LB

Interesting comments. I would also like to add my opinion regarding bullies, whether in a small town or a city.

Personally I believe that in US culture there are some people who bully and some that don't, and it seems that people in general are becoming more aggressive and rude, and bullying is an effective method of attaining their ends.

I also believe that bullying is part of the human condition, and until we stop rewarding aggressive behaviour, bullying will continue.

Bullies bully because they can, they don't need an excuse, and in small towns, schools and workplaces it's condoned and often times, sanctioned. Can I prove that, probably not, and that is what is so insidious about bullying, that trying to "prove" you've been bullied, is nearly impossible, so the smug bully walks away without a scratch.

Meanwhile, the target's life has been completely adversely altered forever.

I used to think that kindness was the cure, boy was I ever naive, nothing like a good bullying to make one totally cynical.

I think the one thing about bullying that really bothers me, is that I don't trust anyone anymore, and I think bullies know exactly what they are doing at all times, and their sole purpose is to cause other's pain, even though that may not be aware of why they bully.

Re; surviving small-town bullying...
by: Sarah...

Tell me about it! I live in a rather close-knit community, a neighbourhood in a housing estate rather than a small town, and the same thing has been happening here.
I am a 'whistleblower' who reported two corrupt employees engaged in anti-social behaviour while on their jobs. In fact, what happened was they 'manufactured' a reason for their anti-social actions by 'baiting' me into a response. Once this had been achieved I then became the chief problem rather than the bullies themselves. It's a classic move I've been told.
People here have no idea what these individuals are like. They don't realise the danger they are in and it is very difficult to tell them.
In fact, since I have been avoiding their place of work, strange things have been happening on the street around me. It is usually just continuous staring until me, or the stranger, is out of sight.
But today as I was walking up a busy main road, a car stopped some distance from me and blocked the narrow pavement. No one got out; it just sat there. There was no way I could get past it as the wheels were up against someone's hedge.
I took a detour into another road, and lo and behold, another dark looking car was at the entrance to the end of that road. As I approached it drove off. Both cars were too distant for me to see their number plates, so they could have been two different cars. And it may have been nothing more than coincidence, although the driver's behaviour was selfish and inconsiderate.
Whatever it was, the fact is people's behaviour where I live is less than desirable. I've been gossiped and slandered about and I hate living here now, but we can't move away at present.
I also agree that psychopathy is a huge problem in our society, but I take a slighly different slant to you. I don't think psychopathy is treatable because the person is not so much sick, rather they are just plain wicked.
I don't know what will happen to me, if anything. All I know is it is no longer safe here.
The neighbourhood looks pretty enough, but it has an ugly underbelly. There are way too many bullies and other predators around.
It is a shame because if we did not have these predatory types, life would be so much better for so many. It would increase the greater happiness of the greatest number exponentially.
But I don't know if that is achievable since so many people seem morally corrupt or base at heart, and all too ready to side with the powers of darkness.

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