We're Adults, So Stop Bullying Me Online!
Dear Mouthy Housewives,
A woman I've known online for years has recently started bullying me. She leaves fairly nasty comments on all of my Facebook and Twitter updates. She's not overtly mean, but she says things in a passive-aggressive way, like: "I remember when those pants were in style! Good for you for bringing them back!" when I post a selfie. I'm a little scared of her, to be honest, because she has no filter and is maybe not altogether sane. How can I distance myself from her without her noticing?
Am I in Junior High Again?!
Dear Am I in Junior Again,
No, you are not in junior high. You are a grown adult, and you won't be heckled online! I recently went to a boot camp class at my gym (stay with me, because I will come full circle with this) and the teacher was just mean-spirited. She criticized me for being late, for being uncoordinated and for jump roping like a baby elephan— as if she's ever seen a baby elephant jump rope.
Anyway (still coming full circle), I am too old to take this crap. I will never return to that class and now take classes with instructors who choose to motivate in a more positive, uplifting manner.
And it's no different online. You should not be a victim of her cyber bullying. If you want to wear baggy acid-wash jeans from 1987 and post a picture, you do it, girl. Show no shame!!
When dealing with passive-aggressive, super-negative or on-the-edge-of-insanity people, I think it's best to lay low. I would not confront her about her comments. I would defriend, unfollow, block and ignore. Hopefully, she's so busy critiquing a lot of people that she won't notice.
But if she emails you about why the sudden freeze out, just say something like, "Maybe I was being super sensitive, but I felt like you were always making fun of me online. Perhaps you were only joking but it just didn't feel great and I needed a little internet space."
And then maybe suggest a hobby so she can spend less time ripping people apart online and more time knitting her Aunt Sylvia a sweater. Because it's very hard to type and knit at the same time.