Hey there!,

Now this post was inspired by general people, general surroundings, my past and something that occurred a few days ago. Hopefully this may help or give an insight as to how you may be impacting someone with your 'jokes' or hurtful words. Whether it's just a general one liner or you are taunting someone everyday. I'm writing this as a victim or survivor of bullying depending on how you want to put it, through out my school life and now as I've come to see also my work life.

I don't see myself as a victim of bullying, not now but during school I did. From the age of around 10 I remember being bullied for being fat. Now you might put that down to kids being kids, but no, I disagree kids know exactly what they are doing and saying and how it impacts someone form a very early age. One incident I remember from primary school, I was being bullied in the form of verbal abuse, from being called the obvious, fat, to being tormented when boys took my headbands, hair bobbles, bag etc. Surprisingly in primary school it was the boys who were the perpetrators some girls said things, but majority of the time it was the boys. Several times this torment happened and me being me told my parents and as a 10 year old kid I got upset. My parents did the obvious told the teachers, however it took several reports until the teachers started to keep an eye out for the bullying. During this time I was lucky enough to have family around me to support me. The bullying continued teachers told them off but nothing happened, until the day I reacted.

This one day the bullies (who were boys) took my headband or bobble and decided to run into the boys toilets with it. At this point I was getting fed up and the confidence and the frustration that had built up in me made me retaliate. All I did, which to a 10 year old would be a very gross thing to do,was that I ran into the boys toilets after him. The fact I ran after him shocked him and all the other boys and he panicked. He jumped up to the piping and tried shuffling along the piping thinking I wasn't tall enough to catch him. Luckily enough for me I was tall enough and I caught him pulled him down and got my hairband or bobble back. After that he never took anything of me again, but he did still called me names, including his friends.

From Primary school the taunting and bullying continued into secondary school. The induction day for parents came around for my secondary school, and I remember this so vividly. The assembly ended and it was a Q+A for parents to the headteacher, and my dad was at the very top of the seats baring in mind these seats could hold up to 300 people. My dad put his hand up to ask about bullying policies at the school whilst he asked he was stood up which to an 11 year old was very embarrassing, not only that but he was in his work clothes (my dad was a hod carrier at the time on building sites) but he was so mucky he looked scary, which to me was extra embarrassing. Rightly so he asked how they deal with bullying to which my headteacher replied we don't tolerate it. May sound good, but we all know in reality it can't be controlled 24/7.

Throughout school I still got bullied for being fat, for being confident, for being enthusiastic for learning, for enjoying drama and just for being me. I know you may be wanting some amazing outcome where the bullies were afraid of me or I did something to stop them but the reality is I didn't. I've only given 1 account in minor detail of when I was bullied, but I was bullied on a daily basis at school so for about 7 years lets say I was bullied, in various ways and form, even on the way to and from school whether that be walking or travelling on the bus. No I'm not writing this to get sympathy because I don't need it, I don't want it, I'm just trying to give the main facts so you have a full view of the timescale this happened over.

This may now sound very boring or stereotypical but the bullying happened so often that I got used to it, I got that used to it I kinda blanked it out. Plain ignorance to the comments sometimes worked because the bullies got bored. On other occasions joining them on calling me names sort of shocked them into stopping. For example and someone came over and said 'oh your such a fat b***h' I would reply 'oh yeah I know I'm a fat cow' 'I don't walk, I waddle' and these sort of replies shocked them because they then realized they weren't going to get the upset reaction out of me. But because the name calling happened that often I was so used to it, I came up with different ways to give smart or witty remarks back. Another form of bullying I encountered was different variations of my surname and soon enough I got used to them, and my response to the bullies was basically 'Why don't you just call me something new' or sarcastically I would say 'oh because I've never been called that before.'.
That is how I personally dealt with it in school.

When it came to  College and University I was so shocked how attitudes changed and how people treat you like a normal human being. It restored my faith in humanity. Everyone had grown up, and the bullies had gone away, literally I never saw any of the bullies again when I went to college. Maturity had happened! HALLELUJAH!  People accepted you for who you are!
However since I went to college, you only had to go if you chose to, but now the rules in England have changes you now have to stay in education until you are 18. So you may still encounter your bullies but hopefully they have grown up and learnt to treat people with respect.

This brings us to the very present, I now work full time. And for the first time in what seems years I encountered bullying yet again. I had a word with a group for cheating on a quiz which upon they were disqualified. This led them to calling me names and of course fat was brought into it again. However because I have endured bullying throughout school it didn't phase me but it bothered my friends that I was with, they were shocked that it didn't phase me. I told them when you have encountered it, it gets to the point where it simply just doesn't bother you no more. If I wanted to I could stoop to their level and bring their looks into the bullying, but I'm not that sort of person the only time I have done this is to defend myself and to try and give them a taste of their own medicine (in school) but now it is not needed.

If you are being bullied, talk to someone, try to ignore it it is easier said and done I know this, but eventually it dies down, it never goes away because the world can be a big bad place. Have the confidence to hold your head up high and ignore them they will soon get bored. Or if you are being bullied just ask the person what their problem is. This will more than likely stun them and they probably won't be able to give you a full answer. Don't be afraid to challenge them!, but don't become one!.

And to those who think they are having a laugh and a joke by saying one liners or who are bullying people. Look at the bigger picture, how many times has that person been called fat, skinny, anorexic, ginger, bimbo, short,  lanky etc. Don't be that person everyone dislikes because what comes out of your mouth. There is no perfect person, everyone has their flaws everyone has their best bits. People come in all shapes, sizes, colors, religions etc. Just because they are different to you, doesn't mean its bad, doesn't mean you have to be threatened! Embrace each other, help each other! Just don't be a bully!

Until Next Time X