I was ‘bullied’.
I don’t like calling it bullying and prefer to call it, ‘being picked on’ because I didn’t have it to super severe, and there’s people out there that do/did so I feel like ‘being picked on’ is a better term for what happened to me.
I was picked on for three/four or so years of my high school experience, (high school: 11-16 years old for anyone that isn’t British <– oo another sneaky fact about me).
At the end of my first year in high school, I was 12 years old when it first started. I’d moved to different classes because I was overachieving in the classes I had previously been in and this meant I was in more classes with my friends too. However, I was also in classes with a bunch of arseholes.
One of my subjects was literacy because it was mandatory to do that class.
Taking a little back turn, I have never been a confident person. I’ve always been shy, introverted, nervous, whatever so in classes the most I would do is talk with my friends. Hated getting in any trouble, I hate and still do hate being in the limelight.
So in my literacy class I would sit and mind my own business, not really listening to the teacher because he was a creep (he once told us that no one would hear our screams!).
And then it started. Three boys in that class started off by calling my name from the other side of the classroom when everyone else was having their own conversation. But that’s it. They would shout my name so I would look over at them and then they’d look at me and piss themselves laughing. Because of my appearance. My face, My body. This happened every single lesson and when I was sat there I wanted to honestly die. I didn’t want to go to school.
And then it started happening in my other lessons. In my music class (another mandatory lesson) one of the boys and another boy that had joined in sat behind me and one of my best friends. They would push their table right into the back of our chairs so we couldn’t move. They’d kick the back of my chair. They made up a horrible nickname for me which I wont say because my name was included in my ‘new nickname’ but they called me fat, basically and they’d say this little nickname to me whenever they saw me. This happened every lesson too.
They’d basically corner me in lessons where I was alone and none of my friends were there and they’d ask me stupid questions, make me feel extremely uncomfortable.
I hated school. I really hated school. And I think the thing that pisses me off the most is that I stupidly didn’t tell anyone until about a year or two ago. My parents and sister still don’t even know. I went through all that bullshit on my own so essentially I had no one.
When it first started, I already disliked myself but at 12 years old I started dieting because of the things they did and said to me. It made me feel horrible about myself, I detested my body, my face (I still do and its on a larger scale because of them). I was unable to eat in public/at school so I would give my lunch to my friends or throw it away. I didn’t want to give anyone a reason to call me fat so I couldn’t eat. I was so self conscious I couldn’t eat. I stopped eating. They made me like that. They made me hate myself so much that I couldn’t eat. I had to lose weight. I had to change myself because then I wouldn’t be picked on. It was my fault because I was so big. If I hadn’t been so big, if I’d worn more makeup, it wouldn’t have happened.
But was it my fault? Was it my fault that I’d started puberty early and my face was covered in spots? Was it my fault that I had an extra little bit of weight on my body that would have gone in a few years? Was it my fault that I was so quiet I was an easy target? If I’d been louder, had more friends, would it still have happened?
Why should anyone be put through, what was back then, torture? I was 12 years old. I couldn’t stand myself, I pretty much wanted to die. I didn’t want to be alive. And I went through it all on my own.
Which is my fault but I was embarrassed. Two of my friends had no clue it was all happening but wouldn’t have done anything about it anyway. One knew something was going on but didn’t do anything.
And do you know what? I’ve never blamed them for that and I never would blame them for that. We were so young, what were they going to do? Even though they didn’t help me directly, the fact that they were still friends with me, still there for me was the reason I kept going because if it wasn’t for them just being my friend I honestly don’t think I’d be here right now, to be honest. And the fact that they’re still here by my side means so much and I know at our age now with their growth of confidence they would say something to those boys.
But why would anyone want to put someone through that?
Those three to four years have damaged me permanently. I can never forget how they made me feel, what its done to me now, the mental illnesses that I have because of those boys, because of those small things they did/said to me. I can’t even walk outside my own house. I never want to go to college. I still can’t eat in public. I struggle with an eating disorder. And they all made me feel this way.
Sometimes I wonder if they remember what they did to me and if they feel bad about it. I don’t think I could ever forgive them but knowing they felt even remotely bad about it I feel like I’d get some kind of justice from it. That they were just young and stupid and uneducated on peoples feelings.
If you see a child or a person being bullied, do something about it. Do not walk away from them. Don’t leave it because that person could have no one.
I am not a confident person, I am anxious, I don’t like the limelight being on me but if I see something I disagree with I will push my fears aside and do something about it.
You need to do something about it too.
Whether its bullying, abuse, discrimination, prejudice, racism we have to stand together and do something about it. We can’t let people go through hell just because we’re too scared of the judgement that comes after, but there isn’t a greater feeling than helping someone in need.
p.s I teared up a little bit when writing this because it honestly has damaged me permanently. And again can I just say, I know it wasn’t very severe but I am and was a very sensitive person, I feel things very deeply so it affected me on a massive scale.
Note to self and to you: ‘Don’t let anyone’s ignorance, hate, drama or negativity stop you from being the best person you can be. You are better than any of those people.’