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A Personal Account. I was bullied

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When I was seven we moved to Florida. No, really, this story started before that. I won't say I made my social life easy on myself. I was insulated as a child. Kept in a perfect little bubble, cherished almost to the point of worship. I believed the hype. Maybe this story started before I was even born. Started with my parents or grandparents. Maybe it was fate. I don't know. 


The first time a kid teased me, really teased me was for eating a bell pepper. It was icky, I was weird with my hippified name, long hair and veggies. No one played with me for a week. I was 5 and I didn't tell my parents. I don't know why but it was embarrassing. Very light snow, the girls dark hair, her eyes. Was her name Kelly? I wanted to be her friend. crying. It got better. My school was small. One of the yard mom's noticed, I think, suddenly I was playing with the boys, her boys and I liked boys. Boys made sense. Throw the ball catch it, tag you're it. If you're the only girl they let you explain the rules. The girls got over it. 
Then we moved, like I said. You can't pick up where you left off when you move. I "talked funny" in the south. I said "yous guys" and not 'ya'll' worse boys didn't play with girls in Florida. The girl I rode to school with was mean, she was laughing about me to the other girls and suddenly I was nobody.

It doesn't really matter what was said, who said it. I learned with time that I was just as bad. I couldn't trust I couldn't forgive. I started crying at the drop of a hat. I was a mess. 
The worst part was my family. They didn't know what to do. My parents were cool when they were kids. They told me so. They hung out with people older than them, rode their bikes around town. I knew in my heart that it killed them that nobody liked me. I started crying at night. 

In the 4th grade I started chewing off the ends of my hair. Perfect, straight lines as short as I could get it. I would twirl my hair sometimes it would get stuck and pull out. My parents noticed all the extra hair around the house. I was told to stop cutting my hair. My dad laughed when he found out I was chewing it off but not for long. I started getting in trouble.

This entire time my grades were terrible. I didn't turn in homework, I didn't read except what I wanted (which was always the wrong thing. KIDS JUDGE YOU FOR WHAT YOU BUY IN THE SCHOOLASTIC!!) I played alone at recess. I lied all the time to my parents. I cried when I had to do homework. I was always grounded. ALWAYS grounded because of school. I didn't see my friends on the street. 

It's so lonely and quiet.  But I'm good about it and I'm good about helping around the house. I do my penance for being an absolute disappointment. Maybe if I had a trapper keeper or a Yikes pencil. Everything feels like rain. 
It rains and rains and rains. Summer is really like a golden time. My friend Meagan comes to visit her grandmother and we swim. We play. We stand up every time "Kiss from a Rose on the Grave" plays on WAPE (the only station we can get on the crappy little radio in the back room.) I'm not grounded. School is so far away. Meagan is weird too. My sister is nice when she's not at school. I can't taint her with my uncoolness. I always feel responsible if some one is mean to her and it makes me mean. For three months every year I can breath.  

School. I read the books on the reading list no one else read. There are kids who might be my friends, would be my friends but I don't trust them. I don't fail the 5th grade. My mom holds me back. No one warned me. I stare at the check next to "not promoted" and cry. I pretty much have no dignity left.
I overheard my mom and I think my grandmother. I don't remember really except that my mom hoped that it would be better after she held me back. Maybe I'm remembering a lot of arguments but I think my grandmother wanted me to go to a different school. My mom really thinks a different group of kids will be better. Maybe they will be.

On the first day of my second year of 5th grade Sister Valarie has me stand up with the new kids. "Sorcha is not new. She did not move on to the 6th grade. She is repeating the 5th grade." Kill me. Kill me now. RIGHT Now. 

I start pulling my hair out.

Sister pretty much points out my every failure to the entire class. Every day my name is written on the board. I don't go to recess. EVERY DAY SUCKS!!

To be fair. I probably could have had friends. Instead I got into fights. Well more fights. I started fighting in the 3rd grade (the one and only apology I got for being teased was from the first kid I hit. His name was Eric, he was, well, bullied into bullying me. It made me so made I shoved him. Parents were called and for some reason this kid was honest. I'm pretty sure his mom flipped out on him. He cried when he apologized. We didn't talk again.) I got into at least on fight a year until my first 5th grade year. I don't remember how many fights I got into. 

I pulled all the hair out from my ears down in 6th grade. Julie saw it over Christmas break and told me to hide it. I think Isis told. Anyway my dad saw it and cried and yelled. I don't remember what my mom did or said. I didn't pay attention to her because I couldn't handle the guilt she felt. The sadness and stress I caused.

I didn't  try to make friends but I found some by the end of 6th grade. By 7th grade we were enemies  They wanted me to be mean to another girl to basically "break up" with her. They had reasons why we shouldn't be friends with her.  To be honest, some of them were pretty accurate. She wasn't my favorite person. I tried to reason. We would go on summer break in a few weeks. After that 8th grade, then graduation. No way she'll go to Kenny. No need to worry about it. The didn't let it go. I refused.
The next day after school another girl (not the ones who's idea it was mind you, they were standing to the side laughing) broke up with both of us. She told me I was a loose, I was weird and that they never liked me. All the things I was supposed to be saying. 

I cried. I didn't want to. I couldn't help it. My grandfather, the person I wanted least to disappoint in the world came to pick me up that day. He walked up on the entire thing. The other girls laughing, my crying. He was so made and for some reason I thought he was mad at me. 

Worse the entire family had to talk about it. My mom called their moms. My dad had me prank call their houses and I laughed with him but it didn't help. Everybody stared the next day at school. We got sent to the principle's office. I explained (in a barely controlled rage -seriously I should have been locked up) what happened. Now they were crying. Now I was mean. I threatened them. Sister Josephine, that wonderful, wonderful woman, asked me why I wanted to be friends with them anyway. She said they were beneath me intellectually and that I didn't belong with them. In front of them. So wrong but it felt so good. I hated them for crying. My mom was off the handle mad. 

I didn't realize it but I was at a turning point. The day I had the chance to join in I didn't. I made a choice. Maybe that was what I needed. It didn't get better over night I was still mad, still hurt, pretty damaged to be honest. I had an identity. 

I don't know maybe I never would have been the girl, standing there. Saying things I didn't want to say. Maybe it was being bullied that made me so determined to no be that girl.

My daughter's preschool had a rule. Everyone is friends. I hate that rule. It's the worst rule I've ever heard. It's a lie and adults shouldn't lie to little kids.
Trust me I know. Not everyone is friends. Sometimes no matter how hard you try you can't be friends with some one. In fact, sometimes you shouldn't be friends with everyone. I don't want that for my daughters. Trust schools to find the only standard more impossible and damaging than every fashion magazine combined. We're all friends. Except when we're not. I hope my daughters can identify who's worthy of their friendship and who isn't. I don't want them to think something is wrong with them when they aren't liked. I don't want them to take every friendship that's offered. I want them to be cool and popular. I want the other kids to want to be friends with them. I want them to float in the bliss of middle school popularity. I don't want popularity to matter to them. I want them to be independent, thoughtful, mature. My mom might have wanted the same things. It's a Rolling Stones song.

I wanted to post this in current events because bullying is such a huge issue. It's not a confession. It is what it is. It happened. Share you're feelings and stories too. 

by on Jan. 28, 2013 at 9:27 PM
Replies (31-40):
lizzielouaf
by Gold Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 6:20 PM
2 moms liked this

She said she experienced similar bullying issues when she was growing up. Perhaps her way of coping with her situation was to develop a thick skin? Everyone that experiences "bullying" handles it a different way.  Instead of judging her response try to see it through her eyes. 


Quoting Stephanie329:

It makes me wonder how she'll handle bullying with her kids when she thinks there is no such thing.

Quoting GLWerth:

My guess, then, is that you're one of those people who thinks there is no bullying anywhere. That everyone just needs to accept that some kids are going to be sick at the thought of going to school every day, that getting punched in the stomach every morning is just "part of being a kid".




Quoting ReadWriteLuv:


I don't see those things a bullying. I don't think you were bullied, I think that is just kids doing what they do. Kids are means little shits to each other, it builds character. I went through the same stuff. I went to school on days when NO ONE would talk to me, but everyone would talk about me and leave nasty notes and crap in my locker. I once got a note signed by half of the girls in my class telling me they all hated me in the 6th grade. In the 8th grade it was worse because the threats of physical violence started too. I never once thought I was bullied, and I don't see those things as being "bullied" now. Those things built character and let me learn how to deal with adversity. 







Stephanie329
by Platinum Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 6:47 PM
No thanks. She's already contradicted herself with her Facebook comments. She's already been called out on that by a couple people, so I'll leave it at that.

Quoting lizzielouaf:

She said she experienced similar bullying issues when she was growing up. Perhaps her way of coping with her situation was to develop a thick skin? Everyone that experiences "bullying" handles it a different way.  Instead of judging her response try to see it through her eyes. 



Quoting Stephanie329:

It makes me wonder how she'll handle bullying with her kids when she thinks there is no such thing.



Quoting GLWerth:

My guess, then, is that you're one of those people who thinks there is no bullying anywhere. That everyone just needs to accept that some kids are going to be sick at the thought of going to school every day, that getting punched in the stomach every morning is just "part of being a kid".






Quoting ReadWriteLuv:



I don't see those things a bullying. I don't think you were bullied, I think that is just kids doing what they do. Kids are means little shits to each other, it builds character. I went through the same stuff. I went to school on days when NO ONE would talk to me, but everyone would talk about me and leave nasty notes and crap in my locker. I once got a note signed by half of the girls in my class telling me they all hated me in the 6th grade. In the 8th grade it was worse because the threats of physical violence started too. I never once thought I was bullied, and I don't see those things as being "bullied" now. Those things built character and let me learn how to deal with adversity. 










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PinkButterfly66
by Silver Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 7:35 PM
1 mom liked this

Hon.. I am so sorry that happened to you.  I wish that you had been able to tell your parents early on.  I wish that they could have made it stop sooner.  

Raise your daughter to value what is inside a person rather than outside.  Teach her that it is ok not to be friends with everyone.  Teach her that it is ok to march to the beat of a different drummer.  And that she will find friends who all march to their own drummer.  And those friends will be true friends. Teach her that you have her back always and will always help her fight her battles.  But more importantly, bullying is one battle that she should never have to fight alone.  

PinkButterfly66
by Silver Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 7:37 PM

Dear, that was bullying.  No child should have to suffer that. In fact if that happened in the workplace, it would be illegal.  That was harassment.

Quoting ReadWriteLuv:

I don't see those things a bullying. I don't think you were bullied, I think that is just kids doing what they do. Kids are means little shits to each other, it builds character. I went through the same stuff. I went to school on days when NO ONE would talk to me, but everyone would talk about me and leave nasty notes and crap in my locker. I once got a note signed by half of the girls in my class telling me they all hated me in the 6th grade. In the 8th grade it was worse because the threats of physical violence started too. I never once thought I was bullied, and I don't see those things as being "bullied" now. Those things built character and let me learn how to deal with adversity. 


PinkButterfly66
by Silver Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 7:39 PM
1 mom liked this

It is NOT a part of life and DOES NOT build character.  Again, I repeat... If it happened in the workplace, it would be illegal.  Slander in the adult world is illegal. 

Quoting ReadWriteLuv:

Boy, that's one hell of an ASSumption. There are limits to everything. I think the videotaping and Facebook bullying is outrageous and needs to be stopped, but lets get real. Name calling and social ostracizing is just part of growing up. It is. It has always happened and will always happen, it's a part of life, it builds character, and it teaches life lessons and helps develop a sense of humor. We can't run to our kids rescue all of the time, or how will they ever learn to deal with adversity on their own? The adult world is a cruel place. I'm not raising a kid who is going to cry in my basement all through her 20's because she can't handle rejection or people being mean to her.

Quoting GLWerth:

My guess, then, is that you're one of those people who thinks there is no bullying anywhere. That everyone just needs to accept that some kids are going to be sick at the thought of going to school every day, that getting punched in the stomach every morning is just "part of being a kid".




Quoting ReadWriteLuv:


I don't see those things a bullying. I don't think you were bullied, I think that is just kids doing what they do. Kids are means little shits to each other, it builds character. I went through the same stuff. I went to school on days when NO ONE would talk to me, but everyone would talk about me and leave nasty notes and crap in my locker. I once got a note signed by half of the girls in my class telling me they all hated me in the 6th grade. In the 8th grade it was worse because the threats of physical violence started too. I never once thought I was bullied, and I don't see those things as being "bullied" now. Those things built character and let me learn how to deal with adversity. 






stacymomof2
by Ruby Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 8:29 PM
1 mom liked this

What a hard story.  I'm glad it didn't make you insensitive to the issue of bullying, as happens sometimes.  

I'm glad neither of my kids goes to a school that says everyone must be friends.  However they reinforce respect and anti-bullying to the point that my girls think that a bully is about the worst thing you can be, and that a bully needs to get forcefully called out on their behavior.  (they teach saying "that is not OK!")  Even my preschooler has a little chant about what to do if you are being bullied.  I like it because it teaches standing up for yourself is OK.

I'm going to type it out here, it's a fun little rhyme to teach preschoolers and kinder age kids.

Bully, bully, bully!

Stay away from me!

You can't have my lunch, 'cause I want to eat.

No I won't move, this is my seat.

No way, you can't bully me!

This is taught in conjunction with lessons about being respectful and kind.  It seems to work, there are no problems at my kid's schools.  Hopefully it stays that way.

i.m.r.
by Bronze Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 9:08 PM
I'm sorry that happened to you. I was bullied in school, not as much, but it was terrible. Over the past year I have been "bullied" in my work place as well. It has been a hard year. If this had gone on in highschool when hormones and emotions are off the charts and I had no support system, I guarantee you I would not be here to type this response.

And to anyone who thinks what you went through wasn't bullying, if a child is self harming something is not right. It goes beyond kids being mean when another child begins to rip their own hair out. I don't think people understand the psychological ramifications of bullying on children and adolescents... Anyway, my heart goes out to your childhood self and I am so glad you were finally able to find close friends and were able to heal from that time of your life.
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ReadWriteLuv
by Silver Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 9:10 PM

As a rape victim who was ostracized by a community and told that "a slut can't be raped", and that is was my fault for being drunk and whorish, I find your comment outlandish, despicable and disgusting, not to mention uncalled for. 

Our definitions of the term "bully" may not be the same, but I find it interesting how I have been ganged up on in this thread for my opinion, and people have interpreted my words in their own way to use them against me. Hmmmm....

Quoting GLWerth:

You're the one who said pretty much nothing is bullying.

Now, you're saying that using Facebook and video IS bullying...actually, by your definition it is simply using new technology to ostracize and call names, it just gets out to a wider audience. So, using your own definition, it is A-OK!

So, do you encourage your kids to name call and ostracize? After all, it's just part of being a kid!

I encourage my kids to use words, not violence. I encourage them to default to being kind, even to kids who treat them badly.  

I encourage them to do what they can to deal with things on their own, but to tell me what's happening.

If it escalates, I step in. Why? Because I'm their mother and it IS my job to make sure that they can learn in school. It is my job to ensure that they are not being mercilessly bullied at all hours.

Oh, wait, there is no bullying, except on Facebook!

Just curious, do you also read about rape cases and excuse it with "boys will be boys!"?

Quoting ReadWriteLuv:

Boy, that's one hell of an ASSumption. There are limits to everything. I think the videotaping and Facebook bullying is outrageous and needs to be stopped, but lets get real. Name calling and social ostracizing is just part of growing up. It is. It has always happened and will always happen, it's a part of life, it builds character, and it teaches life lessons and helps develop a sense of humor. We can't run to our kids rescue all of the time, or how will they ever learn to deal with adversity on their own? The adult world is a cruel place. I'm not raising a kid who is going to cry in my basement all through her 20's because she can't handle rejection or people being mean to her.

Quoting GLWerth:

My guess, then, is that you're one of those people who thinks there is no bullying anywhere. That everyone just needs to accept that some kids are going to be sick at the thought of going to school every day, that getting punched in the stomach every morning is just "part of being a kid".




Quoting ReadWriteLuv:


I don't see those things a bullying. I don't think you were bullied, I think that is just kids doing what they do. Kids are means little shits to each other, it builds character. I went through the same stuff. I went to school on days when NO ONE would talk to me, but everyone would talk about me and leave nasty notes and crap in my locker. I once got a note signed by half of the girls in my class telling me they all hated me in the 6th grade. In the 8th grade it was worse because the threats of physical violence started too. I never once thought I was bullied, and I don't see those things as being "bullied" now. Those things built character and let me learn how to deal with adversity. 








ReadWriteLuv
by Silver Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 9:13 PM

I never contradicted myself. 

Quoting Stephanie329:

No thanks. She's already contradicted herself with her Facebook comments. She's already been called out on that by a couple people, so I'll leave it at that.

Quoting lizzielouaf:

She said she experienced similar bullying issues when she was growing up. Perhaps her way of coping with her situation was to develop a thick skin? Everyone that experiences "bullying" handles it a different way.  Instead of judging her response try to see it through her eyes. 



Quoting Stephanie329:

It makes me wonder how she'll handle bullying with her kids when she thinks there is no such thing.



Quoting GLWerth:

My guess, then, is that you're one of those people who thinks there is no bullying anywhere. That everyone just needs to accept that some kids are going to be sick at the thought of going to school every day, that getting punched in the stomach every morning is just "part of being a kid".






Quoting ReadWriteLuv:



I don't see those things a bullying. I don't think you were bullied, I think that is just kids doing what they do. Kids are means little shits to each other, it builds character. I went through the same stuff. I went to school on days when NO ONE would talk to me, but everyone would talk about me and leave nasty notes and crap in my locker. I once got a note signed by half of the girls in my class telling me they all hated me in the 6th grade. In the 8th grade it was worse because the threats of physical violence started too. I never once thought I was bullied, and I don't see those things as being "bullied" now. Those things built character and let me learn how to deal with adversity. 











ReadWriteLuv
by Silver Member on Jan. 29, 2013 at 9:25 PM

I never said that. Physical violence should never be tolerated. I think what kids do to each other in Facebook smear campaigns is awful. I don't think kids should have Facebook pages, period, and I think parents need to monitor what their kids are doing more closely. You've really twisted my words here.

Of course I would never encourage my daughter to ostracize people. That's just ridiculous to even say. At 9 years old, she is just within the last year starting to feel the effects of mean girls. She comes home and sometimes cries when she tells me what other kids have said, I hug her, I tell her I love her, and then I tell her she has to figure out a way to deal with it, because it is only going to get worse as she marches closer to being a teenager.  If Little Suzy calls her ugly and tells her she doesn't read good, I'm not going to call Little Suzy's Mom. That's something she can deal with on her own. If a table of her friends won't let them sit with her at their table at lunch because she has blue eyes and they all have brown eyes, and they hate blue eyed people this week, I'm not going to call the school and demand justice. They're kids. They're rotten little assholes. The earlier they learn to deal with adversity on their own, the better off they will be.

Quoting GLWerth:

You're the one who said pretty much nothing is bullying.

Now, you're saying that using Facebook and video IS bullying...actually, by your definition it is simply using new technology to ostracize and call names, it just gets out to a wider audience. So, using your own definition, it is A-OK!

So, do you encourage your kids to name call and ostracize? After all, it's just part of being a kid!

I encourage my kids to use words, not violence. I encourage them to default to being kind, even to kids who treat them badly.  

I encourage them to do what they can to deal with things on their own, but to tell me what's happening.

If it escalates, I step in. Why? Because I'm their mother and it IS my job to make sure that they can learn in school. It is my job to ensure that they are not being mercilessly bullied at all hours.

Oh, wait, there is no bullying, except on Facebook!

Just curious, do you also read about rape cases and excuse it with "boys will be boys!"?

Quoting ReadWriteLuv:

Boy, that's one hell of an ASSumption. There are limits to everything. I think the videotaping and Facebook bullying is outrageous and needs to be stopped, but lets get real. Name calling and social ostracizing is just part of growing up. It is. It has always happened and will always happen, it's a part of life, it builds character, and it teaches life lessons and helps develop a sense of humor. We can't run to our kids rescue all of the time, or how will they ever learn to deal with adversity on their own? The adult world is a cruel place. I'm not raising a kid who is going to cry in my basement all through her 20's because she can't handle rejection or people being mean to her.

Quoting GLWerth:

My guess, then, is that you're one of those people who thinks there is no bullying anywhere. That everyone just needs to accept that some kids are going to be sick at the thought of going to school every day, that getting punched in the stomach every morning is just "part of being a kid".




Quoting ReadWriteLuv:


I don't see those things a bullying. I don't think you were bullied, I think that is just kids doing what they do. Kids are means little shits to each other, it builds character. I went through the same stuff. I went to school on days when NO ONE would talk to me, but everyone would talk about me and leave nasty notes and crap in my locker. I once got a note signed by half of the girls in my class telling me they all hated me in the 6th grade. In the 8th grade it was worse because the threats of physical violence started too. I never once thought I was bullied, and I don't see those things as being "bullied" now. Those things built character and let me learn how to deal with adversity. 








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