The Effects of Bullying

Bullying makes you do a lot of soul-searching, but not for the right reasons. Bullying makes you popular, but not for the right reasons.

Being bullied made me feel like I was an outsider for so long in school. I wanted to act like everyone else, but I knew that I couldn’t and the worst thing is - I was made to think there was something wrong with me. I was made to feel that the person I was brought up to be was uncharacteristic and just plain weird. I wasn’t one for smoking behind the trees in school (even if I was healthy I wouldn’t touch a cigarette) or walking around with a huge group of my classmates who I barely talk to for no apparent reason than to talk shit about others. I had more respect for the people who I was going to sit next to in lessons, even if I didn’t talk to them. At the end of the day, it’s about morals and values.

There’s always those expressions and clich├ęs society use to tell you how to tackle bullying and what you should do if you are in that demoralising situation, whether it be at school or even a workplace.

“Tell the headteacher, they’ll sort it out for you” - no they bloody won’t!
“Our school has a zero tolerance to bullying” - yeah, alright then!

Now, I can’t talk about bullying in the workplace because I haven’t had much experience in it (thankfully) I can only draw from my (bad) bullying experience in school.

Society stresses to the victims of bullying that it makes you stronger. Does it though?

It depends on the person. I mean, I can only speak for myself with what I think about how bullying has affected me.

Bullying made me a shadow of my former primary school self. My confidence took a nose dive in comprehensive school and my self-esteem hasn't truly recovered. Which is unfortunately quite sad.

I still get flashbacks from my comprehensive school days. They play back through my mind like an old video tape whenever I take a selfie, ones which are particularly close up in the facial department. I think back to all the shocking and belittling things my so called 'friends' used to say to me about my appearance, my looks and just about me in general. All the vile, humiliating remarks they said to me not just online on MSN, but to my face too and also behind my back. Even though I always found out, well gossip in school can spread around like wild fire. That's where the low self-esteem really takes hold of my mind. Also a strong sense of paranoia.

I suffer with terrible paranoia. I’m always wondering why people look at me randomly in the street if I’m walking past them or what people think of my latest selfie which I’ve posted in social media. If people look at me and laugh, I’m wondering if they’re laughing at me maliciously. I know, that sounds quite bad. It’s not that I’m self centred, it’s the result of being ridiculed in school for many years.

Will I ever 'cure' my paranoia? Only time will tell, I hope I can shut out those feelings and finally be able to feel more confident and less anxious about what others think.

Let's try and end this on a positive note! I don't want to make it sound like I didn't have one single friend in school. I had friends but one in particular was my only best friend in comp and we've known each other since we started nursery together. 22 years later, she's still my best friend and I wouldn't have got through school without her. She was my rock during that horrid time.

Halfway through the post, I asked myself the question if being bullied makes you stronger. I definitely think it can in some way. It can make you incredibly strong minded and more empathetic towards others. With me, I'm very protective and will defend my friends and family till kingdom come. I don't want them to go through what I went through and also feel the same way as I did in school. I can't bear the thought of that happening.

But if you are being bullied, please don't feel your worthless or unworthy, because you are NOT. You are the better person they those bullies will ever be. You will go on to do bigger and better things than they will, then you can rub it in their faces when you've got a high paying job and their sat on  their arses at home watching Jeremy Kyle.


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