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Abusive Relationships/sailing through teasing


Hi Cathy
I need your help on how to sail through teasing.  I have a supervisor who runs me down to a few other co workers.  One of them laughs when my supervisor runs me down and that also makes me feel bad.  The one who laughs is bipolar.
I have reported my supervisor a few times and the verbal abuse has stopped for a while but I am afraid of it surfacing again.  I was told by a few people he runs me down because he sees me as a threat. My mom says when I hear name calling, I shouldn't always assume he is talking about me.  Unless he comes to my face and says it, if he does not then he is a coward.
My employer said if you have no respect for the person the name calling should not bother you. Name calling still makes me feel angry and upset even though I do not like him as a person.  When I go home I think too much of him and the workplace.
My sister said if he sees me being upset from his verbal abuse that will make him more happy as he knows he is getting under my skin.
When I hear him running me down to another co worker, are there techniques you recommend I do to help me sail through the teasing? so his name calling will not upset me or make me angry anymore.  Do you feel that as soon as the name calling starts that I walk away and do deep breathing techniques, or drink ice water and walk for 2 to 5 minutes or count to ten. Would visualisation techniques  be more helpful?  I can visualise being somewhere that makes me happy or think of a pleasant aroma that makes me happy so that I will have my attention away from his name calling and he will see that his verbal abuse has little or no effect on me.  I do not want verbal abuse to get to me anymore.  I need your help on good techniques to practice so I can sail through the teasing and to stop caring what others think.
Thank you for your help.

Hi Jeff

Thank you for writing and asking for ideas of what to do. Name calling is done for many reasons which include feelings of being threaten or needing to feel powerful or superior. Unfortunately, these type of folks usually never change because of their underlying insecurities and beliefs. Most are NOT willing to face or deal with their own underlying issues of pain and sorrow and, therefore, need to find someone to “pick” on to help keep their real feelings submerged.

Reminding yourself that this is NOT about you but about their weakness may help put this issue in the proper prospective. Once you have a firm understanding and belief that this is NOT about you, then learning new techniques will help in dealing with folks as such. One technique that works well is looking into that person’s eyes and just say “really?” in a calm and firm voice Or say “did you really say that?” or “what did you say?” and stay quiet to let them think about their behavior.

Other times walking away may be the best approach or the other techniques you have learned. But getting a firm grip of “letting go” of this person’s behavior is vital to your health and well-being. Learning mediation techniques can help in this area as well. If this person’s behavior doesn’t change, then finding a new job may be needed for your peace and enjoyment of life.

A good book I would recommend is The Verbally Abusive Relationship by Patricia Evens to help you understand verbal abuse and other ways to deal with it.

Other books of learning to “let go” can be found on Guy Finley’s website:

Please keep asking questions as you work through these issues—new knowledge and understanding with good techniques will help you learn how to protect yourself from other's harm in all of your relationships.

Much peace to you,

Coach Cathy,
Cathy Backlund, Life Coach, Specializing in Abusive Relationships and Domestic Violence Education  

Abusive Relationships

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Cathy Backlund, Life Coach in Abuse & Domestic Violence


Are you unsure if you are living in an abusive relationship? Are you feeling confused, angry or hurt and don't know what to do? I can help you determine if you are in an abusive or unhealthy relationship and provide suggestions on how to create a plan for your happiness, health and well-being! Please ask questions to find out answers today! Everyone deserves to live life with happiness and joy, and I am here to help you. Are you ready to find out how you can live a better and happier life? If you are, please ask your questions today!! Asking and finding the answers you are looking for is the first step to improve you joy and happiness!


I am a Certified Life Coach Specializing in Prevention and Education of Domestic Abuse and Violence.

•SPARCC (Safe Place And Rape Crisis Center), Sarasota, FL •CAT (Sarasota Violence Prevention Community Action Team) •Washington State Coalition Against Domestic Violence •Guardian Ad Litem 12th Judicial Circuit of Florida

Please visit my webpage for more information and articles about abusive relationships and domestic violence at or I am here with you, while you find answers that help you!

•B.S. from Evergreen State College, Olympia, WA •Core Competency Course from the Shelter for Abused Women and Children, Naples, FL •Life Coach Training from Changepoint Coaching & Consulting Association •Advanced Training from The Institute for Relational Harm Reduction & Public Pathology •Sexual Violence Core Training from Florida Council Against Sexual Violence •High Risk Domestic Violence Training by Lundy Bancroft and Sarasota Police Dept, FL •Court Assistance Training from SPARCC (Safe Place and Rape Crisis Center, Sarasota, FL •Principles of Prevention by The Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) •Guardian Ad Litem 12th Judicial Circuit of Florida

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