I just read this interesting – and powerful – article on bullying. It got me to thinking about things I try not to think about. Ever. You see, I’ve been there. I never understood why I was singled out. There were far easier targets, yet it was always me. Always. I never got what it was about me…
After my mom and I moved out from my father, I went to a new school for fourth grade yet, it wasn’t long before it was much the same there, too.
I never was good enough or pretty enough or athletic enough… Even now, in my 30s, I still feel stupid, ugly and worthless. It never stops for me. The only difference is that the mean voices are now embedded in my own head.
The screwed up thing was that back in fourth grade, the teacher not only did nothing to stop any of it, she subtly encouraged it!! I was so glad when fourth grade was nearly over, glad because I’d have a new teacher and maybe she would have been nice like the ones at my other school, the ones who would put their arm around me and let me know that they cared, regardless of what the other kids said or did. But no! My fourth grade teacher moved up to fifth grade with us!!!! There was just no relief for me. I honestly think that, had I known it was possible or known how, I might have killed myself right around this point.
I don’t actually know if my mom knew the extent of everything that went on. I don’t think I ever told her all of it… she was doing her best trying to support us, working as much as she could (she was self-employed) and also dealing with my father who was not making the split – and upcoming divorce – easy on her. I honestly don’t think I ever really told her everything. Why would I give her one more thing to worry about?
I do remember that this was the point where I started striking out violently at school. I was in the principal’s office on more than one occasion because I hit or bit someone…. My mom was torn up about it. She couldn’t figure out why I was doing it. The principal never even bothered to find out why I was such an angry kid. Why should she? She didn’t really give a damn. She just didn’t want anymore phone calls from upset parents because the little shithead in Mrs. Raush’s room just bit their precious kid. She just wanted it all to stop. But then, so did I.