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This too shall pass.

Posted: 8/20/2013

I used to be bullied when I was in Elementary school, and somewhat in Middle School. You see, growing up, in the 80's/90's, I always hung out with the boys. For the longest time, I was the only girl on my block, and at some point, my mom let me cut my hair short and dress like a boy. The girls used to make fun of me, and the boys that who hung out with me in the neighborhood, just avoided me at school. I'll never forget the day in the 5th grade when a very popular and mean girl loudly made fun of me and went around the classroom asking the boys if they would take me to the dance. I overheard boys laugh and say no way. Even my own cousin wouldn't hang out with me. She was too busy trying to impress the "cool" girls.  

I remember not wanting to go to class. I remember hanging out in the library and reading by myself often. Luckily, I had very loving parents -- and that helped me through it. Although I had no friends and I was laughed at and teased, for some reason, I still marched forward as if to the beat of my own drum. I was smart, likely that helped me to rise above it. My mother always told me to protect the weak and stand up to bullies. Her words helped me feel like it didn't matter what the other kids said about me. That they didn't matter and that they were on the wrong side of things.

I was called a boy. A rumor started about me that I wore Transformers underwear. I was often laughed at, and the last to be picked to join a group or team. Later in early-middle school, I was called big bird. I think it had to do with how skinny I was and in my first attempts to look like a girl, I wore a bright blue eyeliner.

It wasn't until the 8th grade that my school life changed. I made quality friendships with good solid people. Some of the same girls who made fun of me were part of my high school click. Although, they weren't my true friends, they were on the shallower side of the click and more "friends of friends" or lunch table acquaintances.

My point is, it's all over now. I can even laugh about it. My experience has made me who I am, and I am stronger for it. I have a successful job, a family, and a strong sense of self and direction. What's important is intelligence, kindness, empathy and tenacity. I just wanted to pass this story on in hopes of reminding kids/teenagers who are going through bullying that it will pass for you too. No amount of bullying is worth your life. Life is too precious to waste on the people who pick on you. The bullies are not worth your time and energy. Look around and you will see others in the same boat as you are. Talk to them. They need a friend just like you do

By: Sarah

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