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Bullying: It Isn’t Big To Make Others Feel Small

Posted: 10/27/2015

What should have been a fun, care-free, exciting time turned into a lonely, fearful, depressing time. Being a military brat and transplant a few years earlier during middle school didn’t quite help the bullying I experienced. I already felt like I didn’t belong in this small southern Maryland town so the harassment was only adding insult to injury. I was a fairly quiet kid who was shy in large groups… like school (which I later learned was just a part of my introverted personality type.)…Now, I get it… kids can be mean. Maybe I should’ve had a thicker skin… (or, I dunno, maybe kids just shouldn’t be so mean?) If I remember correctly, I never showed anyone at school that it bothered me. I never yelled back, I never ran off crying. I might have rolled my eyes but that was about it.

Slowly, things started to intensify. It not only got worse in school but spread to my place of work as well. It started with one girl and then it became a team effort with her sister involved. Food was smeared on my car, my email account hacked into, was accused of keying one of their cars (which I would never do – I was raised better than that), harassing voicemails left on my parents answering machine, fake emails sent acting like boys trying to flirt with me, one of the girls got in my face trying to fight me, continued name calling, constant slander and defamation of character… it just became a living hell…I couldn’t figure out why I was such a target or threat to them that they felt so compelled to make my life such a nightmare. I felt trapped, scared, and alone.

I stopped playing sports. I wasn’t interested in doing any of the things I wanted to do like yearbook, after school activities, clubs/groups… I was barely even involved in homecoming and prom.

Looking back, I’m not sure why I ever let someone inhibit me from enjoying things but I just knew it would be awful. I was broken down and didn’t want to deal with it anymore so I just pushed anything to do with school away from me. I even had early work release and was so glad I was able to escape school and be around adults. I just couldn’t wait to graduate.

The worst part about the entire thing was that no one stood with me. I was abandoned. Anytime there was a confrontation, everyone just stood and watched. People rallied around my bully – she surprisingly had friends. Those who were my friends didn’t want to be involved… very passive with their support mostly because they knew it was really bad and didn’t want to become a victim themselves. I do understand that because I wouldn’t wish what I went through on anyone. However, I really wish someone would have helped me be strong. Stood by me and helped me brave the storm.

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By: Jessica Starnes

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