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Old 02-13-2012, 02:44 PM   #22
Location: Massachusetts
Join Date: Jun 2006
Posts: 3,191
Re: HELP! I'm being bullied in the dojo!

Well, presumably your purpose in being there is to get the best training experience you can, which is not the same thing as "best night out with friends" or "best relaxing evening at a cafe" or something like that. The emphasis is on training, and the word "training" includes the idea that there's a goal to improve, and that you'll have to work to reach that goal. That being the case, my suggestion is to take everything with a very large grain of salt: the denigrating comments you're getting from this guy, but even more importantly, the apparent praise you're getting from everyone else.

In our dojo, it's quite common for a relatively new student to get a lot of encouragement and a lot of comments on their progress, which can sound a lot like praise, but really isn't. Seniors do this because they recognize that aikido is often very frustrating at first, and that newbies may not recognize the progress that they're making -- so, you want to call it to their attention in order to reinforce the idea that they are improving. But the bar isn't set very high for this "praise". You're recognizing that someone is making progress, that's all. At the same time, more advanced students don't seem to get a lot of praise. They're much more likely to be criticized -- not because they're doing poorly, in most cases, but because they're expected to need less in the way of propping-up, be ready for more in the way of challenge, and have the experience and knowledge to get something useful out of the criticism.

So, I'd shy away from the conclusion that this guy hates you because you're beautiful (obCulturalReference). If he appears to dislike you, it's no doubt more complicated than that. And if everyone else appears to praise you, that's probably more complicated than you think too.
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