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Stop Bullying Now!

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I didn't quite feel ready to share my story when I started this site, but I figured if I wanted to help others, I'd have to post it sometime or other to show that I got through it and I'm doing just fine. 

I can't remember the first time it ever happened. I can’t remember anything about it; it's all just a puzzle I've pieced together after trying to block everything out. The memories come in bits and pieces, every now and again. I can remember the first time I told someone. It was at the dinner table. My sister and I were talking about school, and I told her something that had happened in English, this boy was bullying me. He was telling me I couldn't take part because I was too shy. She talked to someone at school about it, and the next day it was sorted.

It started to get worse and it was actually my best friend. I can remember one time when we were in RE, she was hitting me with a ruler that belonged to someone else. The girl took her ruler back and bought my friend one of her own to hit me with. I was swinging on my chair and she pulled me back so I almost fell off backwards. At one point, she "accidentally" burnt me with a soldering iron in Technology. Day after day I dreaded going to school. In the end I moved tutor groups and the bullying stopped. For a while anyway. Little did I know it was gonna get worse.

The worst thing I could ever imagine around that period was catching the bus home from school. I dreaded it when my mum was working late. People I didn’t even know would bully me, shout things in my ear and throw newspaper at me. One time got so bad I almost got off the bus as soon as it got down the school drive, because it had already started by then. I remember that day as clear as anything. I was looking at strangers on the bus thinking, 'please, help me, make them stop.' Every time they caught my eye they'd look away. It got to the stage I stopped taking the newspaper off me, I stopped doing anything, I just sat in a ball and let them do what they wanted to: they'd be getting off the bus soon anyway.

I had a fight with this girl once, well it was more of a punching session. She had been tormenting me for a long time, and without sounding childish, she started it. The teacher had such a go at me, and it wasn't like I was ever in trouble at school anyway, in fact I’d never been in the Head of Year's office before. He asked why I’d done it and I tried to explain I had a lot on my mind and I’d had enough of her by that point. He said I should've gone to tell him if she was annoying me. For what? So he could laugh in my face? I was crying so hard I couldn't even stand up and I'd NEVER cried at school before. The bullying about that started then. People would come up behind me and pretend to cry in my ear. One time when I was walking down the corridor two girls hit me to see what I’d do, whether I’d hit them back, leave it, or cry. They'd knock my bag off my back then pretend to cry.

There was this one boy who used to sing stuff to me (I didn’t even know who he was), nasty things, when he walked through the social area. I'd block out his voice and pretend I couldn't hear him, or not show my friends that I knew he was talking to me. When I got on the bus he'd shout and tell me to get off and call me that name he used to call me.

The most vivid memory I had was when I was stood outside tutor with my best friend, and these girls came up to me who had bullied me in the past. They were pulling my hair, asking why I straightened it. They were pulling it hard, and I wanted to die right there and then. When my tutor came, one of the girls said something to me and I said something back (I think I called her a midget) and she said I better not call her names or she'd "knock me out".  My best friend never came back to school after that day.

Another memory I have is when I was walking down the drive with one of my mates. We were just talking and this girl who was in my health and social care class pushed her mate into me. I stopped and said something to my friend, not even about her, and the girl told me to shut up, or once again she'd "knock me out." They carried on doing it, so I stopped to get something out of my bag, but they stood and waited for us. I was so ashamed because my little sister was there and she'd witnessed enough bullying happening to me already. The girls carried on, so we crossed the road. The girl from my class stood in the middle of the road and was going to follow us whichever way we went, until she saw out head of year. She shouted to her mates to stop it and walked on the other side of the road from us with no problem. As soon as we passed the bus she started again, shouting things at me, although I can't remember what. Thankfully my dad was at the bottom of the drive in the car, so we got in and drove off.

Every day was complete nightmare. I dreaded my mum finding out when I didn't want to go to school anymore. A lot of the really bad stuff that happened I'm not ready to talk about yet. Despite everything being so bad, I never missed a day of school. I went every single day, unless I was genuinely ill. I was on my own a lot of the time because my best friend was no longer attending, and the rare moments when I did spend time with my sister, her friends would make comments about it. I can't even remember what I did at break time, but I spent lunchtime in the library. When I moaned about this to my mum, she'd say it was my fault for only having one friend and told me to make more friends. I did have more than one friend, but I wanted to be on my own a lot of the time, I didn't want to be with people in fear of what they'd say to me. My mum would question my friends about what happened in school, and my sisters about what happened on the bus. No one ever told her. I bottled everything up and told NO one what was happening. I was so scared people might think I deserved it as I was so vulnerable and for so long I believed this. It took me a while to realise that NO ONE deserves to be bullied, or asks to be bullied, no matter how they look or act.

In September 2004 my grandma died. It was a big blow to me as I was really close to her. By now I was hardly being bullied anymore, and if I was it as never as bad as it had been in the past. I'd remember things from so long ago that I’d forgotten had even happened; random memories that I'd completely forgotten about. I started self harming as a way of coping. I overdosed on my hayfever medication several times: Not with the intention of suicide, but I saw it as another way of hurting myself. Everything I had valued in life had begun to slip away and I was just living. My body was there but my mind wasn't, my mind was elsewhere. I forced myself to get up and go to school when the new year started. It was a struggle many of the days, but I'm glad I went and didn't give up. Thankfully, I made new friends, some of which I love so much. They are now aware of what happened at school and are 100% supportive. Once I spent an hour and half writing in my diary everything I could remember about the bullies and what they'd done and how I felt, and it actually helped quite a lot. Visions after visions popped into my head so I wrote them down. Unfortunately, the entry is too disturbing to have on the site.

At the beginning of 2005, my mum read some of my diary and she decided I needed help. I was offered lots of support at school, which I declined as I didn't think I needed it (I did, I really did, I know that now) I know school would've stopped the bullying if they'd known, but because I didn't tell them, they couldn't do anything about it. I started counselling at the hospital but only went twice. I did feel a lot better emotionally, but it wasn't long before things took a turn for the worst again. It got to a point where I was throwing up after meals and taking a lot of paracetamol at once at least once a week, and was extremely suicidal. I found a new counsellor who was fantastic. I finished seeing her in July after 8 months and I am a much happier, stronger person. I've felt so much better and have changed a hell of a lot, and learnt lots about myself. I know there are alternatives to hurting myself. I don't get bullied anymore, and I'm staying strong. Yeah, I still have bad days when I don't particularly wanna get up and face the world but I'm not gonna let a bunch of losers ruin everything I pieced back together. I'm at college now, and I love it. I have amazing friends who love me for who I am and have no rejection towards me because of what has happened in my past, and I'm still in touch with my friends from school. In a way, I could say I'm glad what happened happened. Its true: what doesn't kill you, does make you stronger.

Believe me, if you have faith in yourself you can get through anything. You just need to hold your head up high and get through it. Tell someone, because that’s the mistake I made, and a lot of people, understandably, do make it. If you let your bully get away with it, there's going to be more victims that feel like YOU. You're not alone, don't feel ashamed, tell someone. There have got to be more survivors in this world, and I'm proud to say, I'm a survivor!

SBN 2005 - 2008