Bullying is such a worry for me as a mom, especially since I was bullied myself as a child.
If you didn't have the name brand clothes, the expensive shoes, or the "last name", you were an automatic outcast.
And that truly makes or breaks your school career.
This is pretty brutal to think about, but it started for me in the 2nd grade, and it didn't end until I actually transferred schools my 8th grade year. Thankfully enough I had thick skin, more so I made myself have thick skin but, kids are mean.
Girls especially, and I've strongly considered homeschooling all of my children so they skip that part of their education. Truth be told I hated school, and I don't want that for my littles. My oldest loves to learn and I don't ever want her to lose that. It's vital to healthy growth as a child.
Parents, listen to your kids. I'm begging you. Don't try to make things small even if they seem insignificant to you, if they try to talk to you about it. Listen, validate their feelings. Attempt to rectify the situation, whatever it may be. But please do not sit idly by and stay stagnant when your kids are hurting.
If communication isn't necessarily a strong suit, watch their behavior at home, with their friends. There's so many signs to look for. Stay diligent for your babes. Their upbringing from all angles matters, and it's vital if we want to change the world. It starts with our kids. <3
Check out these bullying stories, what would you had done different? As the child, as the child's parent?
I hope this leaves you thought provoked.
A few years back I was the assistant manager at my karate studio. It was a slow, quiet day, when in walked Paul, my old bully from public school. I wasn’t sure at first, it had been a long time, and it was hard to tell.
I didn’t say anything. Paul was interested in joining the dojo, and I showed him around, discussed pricing, etc. I didn’t treat him any differently than I would any other potential client.
At the end of the tour, Paul decided to join our dojo. We sat down in the office and he filled out the paperwork. When he wrote his name out on the application, I knew for sure that this was, indeed, my old bully. The guy who used to torment me every single weekday. Who made me kneel in dog shit.
I still didn’t say anything until after pre-paid me for an entire year’s membership. As I walked him to the door, I smiled.
‘I’m really looking forward to training with you.’ I smiled.
‘Thanks, me too,’ Paul said.
‘You don’t recognize me, do you?’
‘No, should I?’
‘Yes. We went to school together, Grade 3 through 8. You bullied me every day, and made my life miserable. Can’t wait to see you in class.’
Paul went white, and walked out without another word. And never walked back in. He willingly threw away a year’s membership payment, almost $500, rather than have to be in the same class with me.
I once got punched in the pregnant stomach by my ex-fiancee (not the father of my baby). I told him that I hope he got hit by a car. Three days later I found out that he gotten hit by a truck while riding his bicycle to a friend’s house. He survived but had to have extensive surgery to correct his broken bones and save his life. He was uninsured so now he’s stuck with crippling hospital debt from being in ICU and having surgery. I did not have to wait very long for that one.
True story. I got bullied for roughly seven years straight daily when I was in secondary school (second level education in the UK/Ireland, taken from the ages 11-18). I had kids tell me I should die and I was emotionally destroyed by everyone who treated me like the most useless, void piece of crap. I didn’t feel like I should exist. I sat at home contemplating just ending it a lot.
I always loved art, drawing and writing. During my adolescence I retreated to the Internet. I didn’t want to go to clubs where those people were, yet could still talk to people. I started posting animated Flash cartoons and comics to other people who were like me for critique. Due to the bullying directed at me, I developed a rather sad sensibility towards life and an ability to quickly come back verbally at anyone who wanted to give me abuse. It was a defense mechanism for sure, but the tone shown through in the animations and comics that I drew. Through all that, I met friends and eventual co-workers.
I now draw a cartoon called ‘Cyanide & Happiness.’
The local papers write about me. That school held an assembly in my honor once recently (I was told this by a friend who now works there). I live overseas and Jonathan Ross comes to hang out with me at Comic-Con every year, where again pictures of us appear in the local paper. My former bullies know all about this. The particularly bad ones now either avoid me in bars now or try to be my best mate, and I walk around my home town beaming.
There was one kid in particular who would stand behind me in assembly every morning (each year – grade to Americans – was arranged into a line in the main hall) and headbutt me in the back of the head for a laugh with the others around me. The back of my head was severely bruised for months at a time, and early on it’d leave me in tears with the physical pain and lack of respect for me. I’d dread every morning. I’d hear them behind me snickering and discussing whether he should do it or not. I couldn’t turn around to stop them, because then I’d get yelled at by teachers for not paying attention to the front. I’d have my hand at the back of my head to protect myself. I’d hear him say ‘c’mon Dave, put your hand down. You’re safe.’ I’d eventually relent and he’d do it anyway. They’d laugh. I’d turn around and ask him to please not do that, because my head was in so much pain from the trauma he’d dealt it before. He said okay, whilst smirking. I’d turn around, I’d hear them snickering and he’d do it. Again. This went on for around two years. That kid is now a hardcore drug addict, and doing very poorly in life.
Feels good man.
When I was 8 my parents moved us out of our hometown to a place with some room, couple of fields that type of thing, not more than ten minutes out of town, but because of the district boundaries I had to switch to a new school. The new school was about 1/8 the size of my previous school and all the other kids had been going to school since grade 1 or something together (hell they could of been friends before starting school for all I know) and here is the new kid in grade 3 with them and they didn’t like me…for whatever reason. It started harmlessly enough but over the next 2 years thing escalated quickly from the random name calling, a couple of pushy shovey matches to rocks being thrown at a bus stop.
My parents had always told me fighting is not the answer and I stuck to that while keeping my mouth shut about the bullying, until my little sister got hit in the face with a rock and had her forehead cut open. Everything came out after that incident and the teachers? Didn’t do a thing. My father finally had had enough and told me the next time someone [messed] with me I was to fight back, no matter what. So that started a 2 year war with me going home at least once a week suspended for fighting with someone, I got knocked around a bit at first but quickly learned I had a natural ability for fighting. Things got worse, instead of fighting one on one it would be three or four of them. Once I got choked out from behind so bad I had bruises around my neck and I had basically lost consciousness when a parent finally saw and broke it all up. Two kids got a talking to from the cops and nothing more was done, It took actual death threats from one of the kids that was bothering me the most on my parents answering machine to have him expelled from school. Once Douchebag got expelled things calmed down.
Fast forward 3 or 4 years…we are in high school, douchebag from before basically is a burnout first year doesn’t do much, gets suspended, doesn’t show up much. I don’t touch drugs, do my homework and play sports (hockey, football, rugby). The odd time he has harassed me but nothing too major I shrug it off, I’m coming into my own in high school, good group of friends etc. To this day I don’t know what possessed him to do this but myself and a few friends were outside at a party our senior year and I am looking at my friend talking and he shouts ‘watch out’ and I instinctively try to duck and luckily bring my shoulders up a bit, caught a baseball bat to the shoulder, which jumped up and smashed me in side of the face on a glancing blow. I went down to one knee, majorly rattled but still mostly with it and turned around too find douchebag holding a bat and looking at me like ‘how are you even still conscious?’ At this point, I lose my [mind], came off the floor with a righteous upper cut that knocked him on his [butt] and then jumped on him and rained down I’m told upwards to 40-50 punches while he feebly tried to block. Finally some people who came to their sense hauled me off him.
The final result was interesting, I ended up with a very nasty bruise on the side my face and shoulder, hurt like hell. Went for X-rays nothing was broken etc. luckily. Dbag on the other hand ended up with a broken nose, lost 3 teeth, fractured jaw, and countless cuts, two HUGE black eyes, and a ruptured the blood packages on the side of his eyes. The cops never got involved and that was the last time he ever, well anyone actually, ever fucked with me in high school.
Fast forward a couple of more years(8 more like it) , last time I had heard dbag was hooked on crack, selling it and sold 5 kg to an undercover cop and is in prison for 5-10 years. Karma is GREAT.
My mom treats me worse than my younger brothers, and it eventually always bites her. My favorite is the time she saw it coming.
See, when we were teens, my brothers were always allowed to borrow my mother’s car, but I wasn’t. My grandmother even warned my mother that she would need me one day and I’d tell her no. Mom blew her off because why would she need me, and it’s not in my nature to say no.
Fast forward a few years later when I have a car and my mom gets into an accident that leaves her temporarily car-less. Mom never asked to borrow my car even though she wanted to because she knew I had every right to say no, and she admitted it and apologized because she screwed herself over not being nicer to me as a teen.
The thing is, it’s not in my nature to say no. If she had asked, I would have said yes. Her guilt was the karma.
My English teacher in my 11th grade high-school English class fucked my entire life over in some strange way. She basically accused me of plagiarizing a paper in class. Honest to God I did not do it.
She called me a liar to my face, and ruined a lot of my life for a few good years. She reported the incident to the administration, and she tried to make them take legal action. But all I ended up getting was expulsion. My school took this stuff really seriously.
In the long run, it basically caused me to lose five or six scholarships that I really needed for college. I ended up having to go to community college. Nothing wrong with it, but she basically killed any chances I had at become a doctor (childhood dream, spent all of high school prepping for it.) I got most of my general stuff out of the way, and I have a great job now giving out loans at a bank. It pays well enough, but I don’t live any grand life, and I am not a doctor. On top of that most of my friends made fun of me for years about it.
One year after she accused me, her husband cheated on her. The year after I graduated, she got fired for being drunk on the job. About a month ago, the best thing ever happened. Guess who walked into the bank and asked for an extension on the loan she just recently took out to pay for her house? And guess who got the extension denied?
Needless to say, karma related or not. It was one of the highlights of my life!
A guy I went to high-school with ‘friended’ me on Facebook. He was caught stealing from my house once back then, bragging about it to mutual friends (whom he thought would not tell me). After the incident we never spoke, although we had the same circle of friends, I kept my distance, he kept his.
Flash forward 20 years to now and we were ‘friends’ on Facebook. I have a pretty cool job in the music industry, good money and I travel the world. I usually add these former ‘friends’ just so they can see my life turned out pretty awesome while most of them are in our old home town working shit jobs…anyway.
He updated his status saying that he was devastated that someone stole something from his son and karma this, blah blah blah. Amongst all the posts from his friends being sorry for him, I simply wrote something like ‘Yeah, it’s really terrible when someone steals from you eh? That must really suck. Karma does have its way of evening things out though.’ I immediately started getting PMs from mutual friends congratulating me, who remembered the incident in school. He ‘un-friended’ me after that to my extreme pleasure.
My college roommate secretly slept with my boyfriend while I was at class for a year (I routinely took more than a full course load and was in math/science classes or study groups every morning). One day I walked in on them screwing when class was cancelled. Moved out. More angry at her than heartbroken. Lost most of my friends through the breakup.
Fast forward 5 years later: those 2 throw an expensive engagement party at the guy’s parents’ beach house (attended by some still-mutual friends). She caught him boning one of the waitresses for the catering company in a bathroom before the toasts. They still got married.
I’m a stout guy and I can fight, and nobody messed with me in school. I never messed with anybody else either. However, I took classes for part of the day at another school in downtown Indianapolis, and for some reason, one guy there wanted to start trouble. He and his wannabe gangster friends would mess with me, hang out by my car, etc., trying to get me to fight. I wasn’t interested in a one on five fight, or any fight really, since I was graduating in a few months.
I just ignored the guy, told him to fuck off and it wasn’t going to happen. Eventually he dropped it and tried being nice to me. Didn’t work. Anyway, a few years later, I went to the Yankee Candle store at the mall to get my mom a candle for Christmas. I’m waiting in line, and the guy working the register looks familiar. Took a few minutes to place him, then I realized who he was. When I walked up I kinda smirked, and when he took my debit card to swipe it and saw my name, the look on his face was priceless. Guess he didn’t think he’d be recognized in a different town working a job at 22 years old for $8 an hour. It was sweet.
This dick who used to torture me when I was in 7th grade, insisted I was ugly and should kill myself, is now on OkCupid. A few weeks ago, before I got into a relationship, he asked if we went to school together and told me I was hot. He didn’t recognize me, clearly, but it was delicious to know he’d been searching for months and no one was biting.
A high school bully humiliated me on the bus. I was the last stop on the bus, so there was always a lack of seats. I got on the bus and spotted one empty seat next to someone. I walked over and sat next to him.
He turned to me and said ‘I didn’t say you could sit there.’ I replied ‘There were no other seats.’ I guess he didn’t care, because he repeated his previous statement. I just ignored him.
Then he shouted at the top of his lungs ‘GET OUTTA MY SEAT!’ I was taken aback. I couldn’t believe he just shouted that on the bus at me, the situation felt surreal. I saw everyone on the bus start to look in my direction.
I froze up. I started weighing my options. I knew I couldn’t take this guy in a fight. As you should be able to tell from this situation. As I’m still pondering what to do, he shouts again ‘I SAID, GET THE OUTTA MY SEAT!’
Then before I can find a way out, he kicks me out of the seat. I stand up in the middle of the bus and I’m met with roaring laughter from all the other kids on the bus.
The bully stands up ready to fight, and I just walk away. Even if I was able to beat him in a 1 on 1 fight, I knew he was the type to come back the next day with 5 of his friends to beat you to a pulp.
I walked to the back of the bus and sat [there]. I wasn’t about to let things end like that though. So, I planned for my revenge. I started catching the city bus to school, instead of the school bus to avoid further humiliation. Things blew over eventually and everyone forgot about that incident…but I didn’t.
I waited until one day, I saw that bully on the bus with a grill lighter smoking weed. Then he took the grill lighter and smacked a guy in the face with it, and he started crying. I knew this was my chance.
I created an anonymous email address and sent an email to my school officials. I told them about the bully smoking weed on the bus and smacking that kid in the face with a grill lighter. I made sure not to say anything that could give my identity away. That way, no one would know who ‘tattled.’
The school investigated the issue and found the evidence they needed from eye witness testimonies on the bus. That bully was expelled from school and I was free to ride the bus in peace.
There was a kid at my secondary school who used to mercilessly bully the kids in Learning Support.
Being a small school, they converted the old caretaker’s house into a safe environment for the people with learning difficulties to take certain lessons and receive support. It allowed a sorta half mainstream half specialist school environment for them.
Anyways this guy dropped out of school at 16 after 5 or so years of smoking around the back of this house and bullying the kids in LS.
3 years go by and he ends up being shot in the head by a modified air rifle. He now has some brain damage, memory and dexterity issues…and the only place he can retake GCSE’s is the same old house he spent years prowling outside to bully disabled kids.
A boy at school was an absolute asshole to me and my group of friends. I was raised as a fairly introverted kid, and thus gravitated to people of a like mind. He could basically smell the pacifism on us and exploited it to no end. Kicked the crap outta my friends and I every chance he got, humiliated us in front of the class, basically assigned us to the lowest social rungs for most of our schooling year. The relentless intimidation and thuggery reduced me to start hiding in my shell. I would prefer to read in the library than play or eat during lunch, lest his roaming bring us into contact again. Without a word of a lie, I read over 300 novels by the time I had finished school, and had sparked a life-long obsession with literature.
My own bio-father was a bully and violent, and it burned into me a deep-seated hatred of anyone who resorts to preying upon the weak. Daily I would fantasize about murdering him, or at least crippling him so he could know what it is like to be helpless. It is wrong, I know, but until you are in that situation, you never know. Leaving school and going to university led me to be a much more confident person, and I slowly learnt that you can be confrontational without someone being violent to you.
Fast forward to some 8 years after school. One Friday afternoon he walked into my place of business looking for something we sell, and (due to the nature of our business) revealed that since leaving school, he had been caught stealing a car, gone to juvenile prison (due to age), got busted for drug possession, more convictions etc., and been living at no fixed address. (I am in Australia, so the courts can be pretty weak and forgiving sometimes. Not that I care in this case. That he got some punishment is enough for me). We were his last chance for this particular product.
Before you judge too quickly, we had been at a fairly expensive private school, so he wasn’t exactly a down-on-his luck hobo to begin with – he had just never once stopped making bad decisions despite the opportunities given to him.
I projected an outwardly professional demeanor, (internally gladly and gleefully) and denied him service, and sent him dejectedly on his way. (I was required by policy, and had no actual authority over the choice, but it still felt good).
The best part? He didn’t recognize me. He looked at the man serving him, and only saw a man. I had grown and changed so much, and he had stayed exactly the same.
Looking back, it may be bad karma for me to take such pleasure in this. However, it gives me hope that sometimes the bad guy loses in the films AND in real life. I suffered a fucked up school/social life for 8 years because of him, and do not regret feeling some schadenfreude at his demise.
I was a really small freshman in high school (like 5’2″) and looked like I was probably 12. I was always picked on for being the smallest. I transferred to a private school and fast forward 3 years and I go to a party with all the kids from my old school. I see one of the kids that always had it out for me because he was bigger at the time. Im now 6’1″, obviously a lot bigger than before. So he talks some shit to me and I give it back. He shoves me and without even thinking I one punch ko’d this dbag in front of about 80 people. Everyone thought I was a hero and then smoked some bowls with old friends. Great night.
This girl I was dating in college decided to break up with me, saying that she couldn’t handle a relationship at the time. 2 days later, she came running back to me in tears, talking about how she’d made a huge mistake leaving me, and blah blah blah. Me being a sucker for emotions, took her back, and tried to put it in the past.
A couple of weeks later, we have plans to go out, but she calls to cancel at the last minute because she was feeling really sick. I decided to surprise her by bringing her a nice home cooked meal of Chicken Soup and Mashed Potatoes. When I show up at her apartment, I can hear her having sex from the hallway. I pound on her door as hard as I can, and when she answers it, sure enough, she’s wrapped in a robe with her ex boyfriend naked in the living room. I leave the food, tell her to go to hell, and leave.
Fast forward a few months, and I’m at a party, and she’s there with all her friends and some new boy. Any time we were in the same room, she would grab him and start passionately trying to suck his face off to make me jealous (I knew this was her move, because she used me to do it to other guys a couple of times). Later on, her best friend comes up to me (while she’s doing her whole jealousy thing), and asks if I wanna come back to her place. We walk out together without her even noticing. Let’s just say revenge sex is the best kind of sex 😉
I befriended a larger red headed girl when I was in grade 3 or 4. She was new to the school, everyone had their own friends and no one accepted her. I didn’t have many friends so I gladly accepted her. We became best friends. Fast forward to middle school. She was still large but got boobs and wore makeup, so she became popular. I was still a way too tall and too thin awkward girl with a lisp. Everyone made fun of me and she joined in so she could be cool. It got worse and worse until she started instigating it, would circle beat me with other girls and egg my house.
Fast forward again to high school. I filled out a bit and got better friends. About half way through grade 11 people started realizing how mean and fake she had become and turned on her. She was crying in the hall one day and I went up to her, asked if she was ok and offered my phone to her if she needed to call her mom. She transferred schools for grade 12 because she was being bullied. Funny thing is, I still feel bad for her. Bullying sucks.
When I was about 8 and my brother was 11, he got in trouble for punching a kid in the face on the school bus (my brother claims he was defending someone else…I don’t really remember it all that clearly). My brother paid the price, was banned from the bus for a while, faced repercussions at school, and my Mom made him apologize to the kid he punched in person. A couple of months after the incident, the mother of the kid he sued my parents for mental anguish, claiming that her son now had crippling emotional problems stemming from the incident. She showed up at board meetings, tried to get my brother expelled, painted a picture of my family as shady and my brother as a delinquent and violent.
My parents ended up escaping the legal battle with a little bit of dignity intact, but feeling ostracized in our community of 90 people.
Fast forward…I’m now 27, my brother is 30. My Mom sends a newspaper clipping to him in the mail…it’s the indictment of the mom from our childhood. Come to find out, she had been embezzling money from her employer for 5 years…totaling more than $50,000. May have taken two decades, but she finally got what was meant for her.
I was one of the least popular kids in my high school by far. I was too nerdy for even the nerds to hang out with. I spent most of my time with the outcasts.
I knew it was bad but I had a crush on a football player. (Can you blame me? What nerd didn’t?) I decided for once to take charge and do something for myself.
I asked him out.
He laughed in my face and told me I was too ugly for anyone to ever date. Called me ‘crow face’ which was a lovely nickname that caught on for a long time. Because of this, I had such awful self esteem and well into my 20s, I still couldn’t ask anyone out and even now still get to embarrassed sometimes. He ruined my self esteem completely.
After high school I began doing modeling gigs and cosplay events. I felt great and looked amazing.
Not too long after these shoots started popping up online, he messaged me on facebook telling me how gorgeous I looked and that he should have never said no to me at all.
I then got to calmly explain to him the years of self esteem issues I’d suffered from him and how I always pictured him humiliating me in front of our high school any time I wanted to ask someone out.
In 8th grade (age 13-14), this kid threw a wooden block at me, probably thinking, ‘Oh, let’s pick on the punk girl, that’ll be so hysterical!’ I blacked out for a good 10-15 seconds after it clocked me in the head. When I came to, he and his friends were all on the ground laughing at how funny this was. I ended up having to go to urgent care and not participate in gym class for a few days. His mom was on the school board and had a large role in the financial decisions of the school, so the administration was afraid to punish him and did nothing. My math teacher was this kid’s football coach and made him run extra while everyone else got to take a food/water break, but that was the only justice I got.
Fast forward two years: everyone is freaking out that this guy can’t play football for the JV team that year. He ended up spraining his back and breaking a few ribs from a drunken escapade into the woods the week before his sophomore year started, and the concussion that he sustained from this was severe enough that a second concussion could have caused serious mental damage.
Two years isn’t that long of a time, but considering there were witnesses and the kid should have been arrested and suspended at the very least, it seemed like a long time.
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