Standing Up for Yourself?

"Why don't you stand up for yourself?" is an oft-asked question. We're adults, aren't we?

In most cases, the bullying follows a two-phase procedure. Phase one is control which is exercised through constant trivial daily nit-picking criticism etc. Eventually there's a defining moment when the target realises that the criticisms have no validity and that they constitute bullying; the target asserts their right not to be bullied, perhaps by initiating a grievance, and the bullying moves into phase two: elimination, which is achieved by dismissal on false charges, ill-health retirement, forced resignation, redundancy, or death from suicide or heart attack due to prolonged negative stress.

The reasons people don't assert their right not to be bullied are complex as the following list shows (all the fears are justified):