Tag Archives: past

The beginning of bullying

I was bullied through school, although I can’t remember exactly when or how it started. Maybe I’ve blocked it out. Maybe it was just so insignificant that I didn’t really make a memory of it.

I know there was a group of friends and I became caught up with them.  I got close to one of the girls.  Maybe the jealousy started it.  I don’t know.

I read that bullies often accuse the bully of being a victim.  This definitely happened. I was dragged into the deputy heads office accused of all sorts of horrible things against 6 other girls.  Me?!  Yes, I’m ranty.  Yes I’m a bitch NOW, but back then?! Well, I had a mean steak. We all did, but I was mostly meek and scared.  I could have said something, although my mind was so frail that I would have been totally incapable of verbally abusing anyone, let alone being a long standing bully to 6 girls who were both considerably bigger and considerably stronger than myself.

I got suspended.

That was the first time.

The second suspension came after I snapped after 3 years of being told I was skanky, smelly, had fleas, hated. I had been scratched and thumped in passing.  I had had my hair pulled, told things I don’t remember (I have blocked out a lot of things from before I was 16.)  I remember being terrified to go to school incase they said something.

Then one day, the ringleader was laid on a table in the form room.  I went in there to speak to someone else.  I was with my friend who happened to have red hair.  Ringleader relished this opportunity and thought she was being clever.  I belted her one.

Not my finest moment.

Still, I don’t remember when I went from being friends with them to being universally hated.  Sometimes I do wonder if it was me putting my foot in my mouth.  Other times I realise that nothing I did or said would have changed what happened back then. 

On bullying

I am writing about bullying for NaNoWriMo this year.

I was bullied at school.  This happened mostly because I was a sensitive child who cried a lot and bullies love an instant reaction to their harsh words or actions.  I was quickly targeted by two different groups and ended up not really remembering 3 out of four of my school years.

Until recently, I knew that this was the subject I wanted to tackle but I couldn’t recall exactly how I had felt at the time.  Now I remember the helpless hatred of the people making my life a misery as I watch someone else in my life be mercilessly bullied by some truly horrid, despicable and downright selfish shithead excuses for human beings. There is absolutely nothing I can do to help them.  I can’t swoop in and knock the biggest one out.  I can’t stand in front of the victim screaming for the teacher. I can’t go to mum and get her to write a letter (a pointless action at the time of my own episodes of being a victim as it was countered by the other mum. In those days, bullying was only just being brought into the public eye, and schools generally still didn’t have a policy or procedure for investigating. Their way of dealing with cases was to externally or internally suspend all involved. Eyeroll).

So, now I feel the burning helplessness in the pit of my stomach once again, and I know for certain that now I have to write my stories of bullying.

Oddly enough, because the relentless bitching from some (as it turned out later on) very fucked up girls made me who I am today, I wouldn’t change it. In fact, for the record, I would like to offer some thanks for making me a strong woman who tolerates very little shit (sometimes to her detriment.)

I digress…

Bullying, in all its forms, is totally intolerable.  This includes bullying in the workplace, at home, or in the schoolyard. Some people really should know better.

A waste

The weekend was full of sadness for a lot of people.  There were horrific events across the globe and a lot of people have had their lives changed irrevokably.

I always feel saddened when I hear a celeb has died (yes, I’m going to talk about that story, but it does not mean it should eclipse all the other tragedies.) There will always be a story which pulls at heart strings, and the death of Amy Winehouse did just that to me. It makes me so sad to hear of such a waste of talent.

I think the reason why this story touches me is because of a personal experience a few years ago.

When we were at school, there was a group of girls of various ages who used to hang out in the music room.  We would go there at break times and lunch times and we were considered by the rest of the school to be the music geeks.  We immersed and surrounded ourselves in every aspect of music from playing to composition, aural to history and were all very talented and highly skilled.

I have a lot of memories from those days at school; the concerts and parents evenings, the brass band being praised as one of the best in Hampshire. We all moved into college and once again were celebrated for our talents.

College had a different dynamic and there were two very distinct cliques.  At school, we all got along, even though there were members of the group we each favoured less.  College made us choose.

I chose not to group with a girl who clearly hated me and got drunk at the back of the bus with the goth outcasts, one of which was Jo.

Jo had been in the year above me at school and we’d never gotten on famously.  I had never really liked her, mind you she seemed to have this problem with a lot of the girls.  Not that she particularly minded.  She was nice to everyone no matter how she knew they felt about her. I didn’t like her because I was jealous.  She had everything.  She was an amazing trumpet player, she dabbled in piano, she got straight a’s and was good ay every thing.  Teachers loved her.  She was modest, she was strong.  I only ever saw her cry once.

Anyway I lost contact with everyone from school and college after some very bizarre events. This was how I’d wanted it as my depression had left a bit of a trail of destruction and it was important for me to be able to start a new life without the kind of negativity that was thrust upon me.  So I meet OH…

Then I meet his friends, one of which was in an external orchestra with all the people I went to school and college with. One day AH is at AR with us and he says:

Did you know Jo?

Me:yeah. I never really liked her.
Him: she died last month.

BOOM! Wait what? She died? How? She was only 27. She had everything.  And now it is gone, lost forever.

I didn’t and still don’t know how to feel about her death.  All my memories are tainted by knowing.  Her absence is noticeable every time I even think about school and college.  It makes me sad, drags on my heartstrings, that the blaring high trumpet notes that came from the bell of her instrument that I have on CD will never, ever ever be played again.

We had a reunion of sorts in 2008 and she was the hot gossip.  We had been told pneumonia had killed her but it had been revealed later by a couple of the girls who are now nurses that it was a drug over dose.

She had mixed with a bad crowd and taken a lethal cocktail of drugs.

That’s why Amy Winehouse dying makes me sad.  Yes, ok, they needed help.  They didn’t get it, either because they didn’t want it or they didn’t know how.  Such a tragic waste of something fantastic.

Every genius pays the price.  The currency being mental health.