NFL Star Enters Therapy

Jonathan Martin – offensive tackle for Miami Dolphins in the NFL – has entered into therapy to help him deal with bullying and harassment from within his own football team, it was revealed on Monday.


On 4 November Mike Garafolo, of FOX sports, tweeted “To update on Jonathan Martin, he remains in California and begins his therapy today, per a source”.


According to a number of sources Martin has been subjected to ongoing bullying from his team mate Richie Incognito, who has now been indefinitely suspended, as reported by The Telegraph. Incognito has been accused of sending his colleague threatening and racist texts and voicemails, during a campaign of bullying and harassment that has been much more serious than originally thought.


Bullying can be subtle, and too often it is not taken seriously enough. Especially when it is between ‘friends’, or within a team situation such as a sports team or at work. Sometimes bullying can take the form of more ‘obvious’ actions which may or may not remain hidden, but other times ‘teasing’, ‘banter’ or ‘having a laugh’ can cross the line into something much more serious.


It can be difficult to continue to function properly when you feel the subject of another’s abuse, again whether this is obvious or more underhand. It may be harder to deal emotionally with the drip-drip effect of being targeted covertly than with a specific, obvious incident – such as an assault or an accident. This may be because the situation is overlooked or dismissed, or the subtleties of the abuse might make it difficult to ask for help. You may even question whether the abuse is actually happening, or whether you are being hypersensitive. It can be wearing and exhausting, and it can have significant knock on effects on your family, relationships, performance and wider life.


At The Grove we understand how much it can help to talk your story through with someone who is willing to listen. This can help make sense of your experiences, and understand the emotions that are arising for you as a result of the bullying. We can discuss whether you want to confront the bully, whether through raising a grievance at work or confronting someone in your personal life. If you decide you do want to act we can support you in doing so, and continue to offer support as you go through the process. If you are experiencing bullying in the workplace, like Jonathan Martin, we can also talk about possible strategies and techniques to help de-escalate the abuse and develop coping mechanisms skills for the future.


Primarily, through counselling and therapy, your counsellor at The Grove will witness your story. We will provide an environment in which you can talk about what has been happening in confidence, knowing that what you say will be taken seriously and given the attention it deserves. From there, we can discuss if you want to take any further action, and consider how you might go about it.


Let’s talk first, before you make any decisions, so that you can act from a calm and informed place and be sure of support to help you through this difficult time.