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I wonder what you think of when you think of bears?

Perhaps cute and cuddly stuffed toys?

Perhaps you are more realistic and think of real bears…

Perhaps you are somewhere in between and think of real but still cute bears…

Or perhaps you think of cartoon or art-based bears such as these that I drew some years back….

Or perhaps you go the other way completely and think of scary bears…

Bears come in all shapes and sizes don’t they?  And I would think most of us at one time or another either in person – at a zoo or wildlife park or reserve – or even on television would have seen a sign like this…

But what if the BEARS I am talking about are not the cute and cuddly things or the art or cartoon things nor indeed real life mammals?

What if the BEARS I am talking about are around us everyday, come in all shapes and sizes and indeed disguises and do more harm than all the mammal typed bears put together?  What if BEARS in the context I am speaking of is an acronym?

  • B – Bullying  (bludgeoning, browbeating, harassing,)
  • E – Expectations (assumptions, suppositions, presumptions, persuasions)
  • A – Accusations (blame giving, charging, incrimination)
  • R – Rationale (thinking, logic, belief or actions)
  • S – Suggestions (approaches, suspicions, condemnations)

It’s an interesting consideration isn’t it?  The more I read or hear of human nature, the more I recognize that we all of us suffer from Bullying Expectations, Accusations, Rationale or Suggestions.

They really are around us everyday and not only from other people but also from ourselves and our own thoughts!

I cannot begin to describe the actual or potential destructive effect these have on all of us.  Just look at the suicide figures for your area or indeed the levels of mental health related illnesses as a result of depression etc.

And for those of us who do suffer from poor mental health the potential and the experiences can be much more severe.

These BEARS, these – Bullying Expectations, Accusations, Rationale or Suggestions are like predators.  One they have found us they can stay with us and hunt us down it seems.

Additionally they can do so much damage either immediately or progressively and can maim or scar us for life if allowed and without doubt have led to many a suicide especially it seems within young people nowadays.  It is therefore essential for us to do all we can to identify them, recognize them and to avoid them wherever possible.

And let us make no mistake here as I said before they can come from many sources and in many disguises, some of which seeming so friendly and innocent.  So we have to be careful.

In this post I have tried, whilst high-lighting the problem, to keep the subject fairly lighthearted, but I really can’t begin to describe the damage that can be done here.   I really do encourage everyone to give this some serious thought in respect how we allow others to talk to and treat us, how we talk to and treat others and especially how we talk to and treat ourselves!

It is my fervent hope and prayer that in our dealings with each other and especially with our children and young people and also ourselves that we …