This book is devoted entirely to case histories of the victims of bullying. It is a collection of stories from some thirty six victims and some perpetrators of bullying, a potentially physically and psychologically harmful crime, against anyone, that can and does take place at any time and in any place. These case histories vary hugely from supposedly 'minor' cases to some which are far more serious, although bullying of any severity is serious and potentially very harmful to the victims. The case histories in 'Bullseye' reveal the victims' sufferings as they try to deal with the bullies and show readers how this issue affects their everyday lives. This book gives readers a chance to look into this very serious problem as they learn how bullying creates a depressing and sometimes devastatingly lifelong effect on the victims' lives.
Some of the case histories are very descriptive and hard hitting, while others are less severe. Most of these have taken place at various schools, others are from workplaces. All but one have come from Australian victims.
The Following is the introduction to 'Bullseye':
BULLY: Described in the Concise English Dictionary:
'A browbeating person, esp someone who is habitually cruel to other people;'
'intimidate with persistently aggressive or violent behaviour, or by using threats of voilence;
These two descriptions are certainly true, but to the victims who have so generously submitted their stories for inclusion in this book ... they would barely be adequate. I have been one such victim, but my tale of woe is NOTHING compared with the humiliation, embarrassment, degradation and so much more that many of the people included in 'Bullseye' have suffered, many still suffering. My own story is not actually included.
The suggestion of writing a book about bullying was put to me some years ago. Research through those years has suggested that many books have been written on this subject, but no-one appears to have actually devoted a book almost entirely to stories from victims. This, then, was my goal. In communicating with these and other victims, both current and past, I found that they all appeared to have the same message....just how therapeutic it was to be able to just talk about it ... get it off their chests. Of course, there are always the exceptions. Sadly, one particular victim has been so badly scarred that he found it too difficult to write his experiences at all. And of course, writing their stories will not change the fact that these people have suffered badly. Many have had counselling, many have not ... some are still undergoing this. Some cases are far more serious than others ... some have undergone the court process ... others are still going through this.....
As mentioned, the stories in 'Bullseye' vary hugely. But irrespective of the severity of them, the effects on the victims have been horrendous. Many have made my blood boil.
Doing this has given me a very small idea of just how mammoth this problem is and that it is EVERYWHERE. No-one is immune, nor is any institution, any situation. It takes place at any age, to either gender, any faith, anywhere, anytime.
Many of the victims were bullied in their teens and/or childhood and some of these people were raised in the years prior to bullying being recognized and/or acknowledged. For some it is past tense, for others a very current and ongoing nightmare. Some stories have come from various workplaces. There are even a couple written by people who have been bullied and have been bullies themselves.
What has disturbed and infuriated me throughout (and believe me, I would NOT have wanted to have my blood pressure nor stress levels taken while doing this), something that does appear to be a common thread, particularly with the stories taken from schools...in seeking help, justice and compensation through the appropriate channels, the education and legal systems, in almost every case it appears that the perpetrator/s is/are the ones who have been supported ... not the victims. If anything the latter, the victims, have been punished??? Most if not all schools maintain that they have a 'bullying policy' in place ... but given all that is covered in these case histories and some of the outcomes, I do have to ask....just how effective are these policies and who are they aiming to help?????
In one particular case, the victim lost her father, which was tragic enough in itself, but then, from what I can see, she was bullied??? For losing her father??? WHY? What IS the mentality of bullies????
A few of these histories are quite long and, as previously mentioned, some victims continue their fight for compensation and justice. I have and do feel so much for the victims, their families and loved ones. Overall, from what I have learned, the attitudes of the schools leave me cold. I am not saying that this applies to all schools worldwide (and remember, these histories are one sided)....goodness knows, those in 'Bullseye' are only the smallest drop in the ocean compared with the amount of bullying that continues 24/7. But from what I have read of these and dozens of other cases as well .. sadly, that does appear to be true of many schools.
Please bear in mind as you read through my book that all cases are direct quotes from victims or loved ones and all have been reproduced with the original grammar, spelling and punctuation as intact as possible. All are also anonymous. All names of humans and institutions, schools and towns have been changed to protect the innocent.
I know bullying is a widespread and horrible problem and sadly, seems to be increasing and it is everywhere. When I first decided to write this book I was mainly using it as a therapeutic tool for my own experience. My own story has now not even been included.
I have no idea who will read this book and I will not say I hope you enjoy it ... unlike most publications, that is not the purpose of 'Bullseye'. But I really hope that reading it does some sort of good somewhere, even if only to let the victims of bullying the world over know that they are not alone. Not that that helps much, if at all, but it might be of some consolation???
'BULLSEYE"is now available for sale through various websites. Should you be interested in reading an excerpt, please visit the Xlibris Corporation website on this link . Otherwise, please feel free to fill in a form on the 'Contact Us' page and submit that, and I will get back to you as soon as possible. Alternatively, please feel free to call Lannah on 0411 139 639 and leave a message if necessary.
PS: UPDATE! "Bullseye" now has a blog! Please feel free to visit, leave comments and feedback ... all welcome, the more the merrier (but nothing nasty :))
To visit... either follow the link above or the following address
If you would like to help me in the fight against bullying, perhaps you might be good enough to nominate me for a guest spot on the Oprah Winfrey Show when she is in Australia. SHOULD we succeed I would be promoting the fight against bullying as much as I can, along with 'Bullseye' of course. Just think of the brilliant exposure. There is a link to the appropriate nomination form on a separate page of this website.....'Fight Against Bullying' My sincere thanks to you in advance.
ELLEN REBMAN, (Teacher and future school counsellor in the USA): 'I finished reading Bullseye a few days ago. I found it to be very interesting reading although, again, some of the terminology was foreign to me. I guess that makes sense since it was a book about bullying in a foreign country. I found myself often watning more information about the situation, but that is just the counselor in me coming out. I can imagine that the counselor response to this book would be great.
'You know what is funny, I never really thought of myself as being bullied, but after reading several of those cases they sounded really familiar so I guess I was. I was never physically or sexually abused by anyone, but I have been teased, ostraciszed, and made very uncomfortable in the workplace by co-workers and bosses. I guess I just pretty much chalked it up to a normal experience. Frustrating and sometimes depressing, but pretty normal. I guess that is just how I was raised. My mother always just told me I needed to get a 'thicker skin about things like that." It was not considered bullying when I was in school unless something physical was happening. Cyberbullying is the thing that really worries me these days. It is causing so many problems and how is a parent, teacher, or counselor supposed to stop it?
'I was really appalled by the lack of response by the schools in most of these cases and sometimes by the lack of response in some parents. Especially in the case where the girl was raped!! The police should have been involved in that case as well as social services!
'I am glad I read it and I think it is helpful as an eye-openerto me as a future school counsellor'.
FEEDBACK FROM A MOTHER IN AUSTRALIA: 'I finished reading your heart wrenching book a couple of days ago and found I could not put it down. The sadness and intensity of each and every experience and the way the stories were worded......
'I do hope they and anyone else out there, gradually recovers and are able to lead better and more fulfilling lives.
'My stories were nothing compared to these and were isolated incidents, yet very, very painful and unforgettable. I think for bullying to continue day after day, would be unimaginable.
'After reading all the cases, I feel even stronger about the idea of a sequel, in which each case has a happier, more positive ending.
'Even though I haven't forgotten my experiences, I do believe in myself, am mostly positive and I've become slightly stronger when dealing with people who are only too ready to put others down. Avoidance is a good way, if possible.
'Congratulations once again, you should be proud to have produced a book that will touch the hearts of many.'
FROM ANOTHER MOTHER IN AUSTRALIA: 'The stories that are reflections and memories of a bullied childhood are very, very sad and quite a lot from small country towns.
'I don't know that some of the adults interpretation of bullying may be confused with inadequate conflict resolution skills, it is interesting to think that some see it as bullying. I also noticed that there is a lot of issues with regard to power and bullying in the medical/nursing field, also interesting (is this bullying or power/ego conflicts). Most of the other adults bullied were in lower socio-economic levels, ie a factory job and jobs requiring little education. These are just my obvservations of course.
'Your comment in the introduction was quite a valid statement that "the powers that be" do not seem to know how to deal with this terrible thing and therefore just brush it aside or under the rug, people are not getting the justice that they deserve. One comment I would like to make is that all these stories, even if some are about males, are from a femal perspective, it would have been great to hear some male interpretations of their experiences, maybe Bullseye II?
'Anyway, I think what you are doing is great and good therapy for a number of people.
FROM ONE OF THE CONTRIBUTORS: '[It has been such an honour that you felt you could] share my story with oathers in an effort to bring attention to this problem in our society that is swept under the rug all too much. I hope the media and schools finally understand the issues around this topic, hopefully something can finally be achieved in this area. Believe me being part of your book has given me confidence that I never knew I had. I am now studying with the aim of becoming a counsellor orsomeone who helps kids deal with bullying and hopefully I can change one persons life with the sharing of my story, then everything is worth it.'
FROM HALLY v P BRANDLE: Owner of 'CREATIVE BALANCE'', author of 'The Balancing Act'. Website: www.creativebalance.com.au/. 'Bullying is one of those words that we all know about but are too cautious to raise. Yet, all of us have experienced this at some point in our lives; be it during our childhood, at school and sadly, even in the workplace. Bullying is unacceptable and traumatic. The impact is damaging to the victim and it is refreshing that finally someone has said what we all have been thinking.
'Lannah Sawers-Diggins' book 'Bullseye' provides first-hand accounts of what it feels like and the ramifications. It is written in a way that allows each of us to relate on a personal level whilst highlighting the severity of the subject matter. If you have ever wondered if you have been bullied have a read and you may be surprised what you discover, even about yourself. Great work Lannah!'
FROM EVELYN M FIELD (FAPS): Author of 'Bully Blocking' and 'Bully Blocking at Work'. Website: www.bullying.com.au. 'Any communal tragedy, like a tsunami, flood or eathquake, is shared and managed. Stress may be high but so is support and assistance from many sources. Whereas the target of bullying feels that they are to blame in some way, despite bullying being caused by incompetent management. In addition, help is hard to obtain and validation is absent. No wonder many fear going to school or work.
'Bullseye' is a very comforting book for the reader, the stories show that they are not alone and that some people do care. It shows how bullying can leave traumatic scars that never fade. Finally, the reader can take away a message that next time, they can handle the situation differently and block the bullying.'
FROM THE SACRAMENTO BOOK REVIEW: 'Lannah Sawers-Diggins has created an important and muc-needed book on the subject of bullying from the viewpoint of the victims. Having been a victim, she is familiar with the territory. Bullying is fast reaching epidemic status in the US, with an extremely sad outcome. When children and teenagers find suicide as the only imaginable remedy, it's long past time for the supposed adults to step in and find solutions.
This slim book tells 36 case histories in the words of the victims. No real names of places are mentioned, to help protect the innocent, but the overall sadness will weigh you down for days. We must learn to believe the victims rather than the perpetrators.