Anti-Bullying NetworkYoung People's Section

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Most of the time that I spent at school I lived in fear because of bullying, although I did not experience any physical abuse. I was slim and I wore braces on my teeth. I was also very shy and I liked to get on with my school work. I had a few friends who were also fairly quiet.

Almost everyday for about two years I was called names and laughed at - not just by one person but by my whole class. All my teachers knew about the bullying but very little was done to stop it. I never told my parents and neither did the teachers. I felt so alone, ashamed and very ugly. I often thought about suicide but I did not want to die, all that I wanted was for it all to stop, I wanted someone to save me. The bullying never really stopped. I was still being pointed at, laughed at and called names right until I left school.

I spent years with braces on my teeth and I had an operation at the age of 16. I thought the surgery would change the way I looked but it changed very little and I still felt just as ugly.

The bullying has affected my whole life. When I was just 17 I ended up seeing the first man that spoke to me in my local pub, and he was twice my age! He was not what I wanted but I was so flattered by his attention. Most of the bullying I received came from boys so it was so nice to have a man interested in me, and I did not care who he was! After a few months I ended the relationship because I knew it was not right. I then met a wonderful man! I told him all about my life and he was very supportive. I am 21 now and I still lack confidence. Going to the local shop on my own is extremely stressful and I usually avoid going anywhere on my own. I still hate walking past school children in case they laugh at me.

I am happy with my appearance now and my partner tells me everyday how beautiful I am and I think he is telling me the truth. Looking back my experience was awful and I thought it would never end, all I ever wanted was to be saved from it all. A day in school could feel like forever. I could see no way out and I thought I had to go school or something bad would happen. I think that everybody should realise how serious bullying is because it causes life-long psychological problems or worse.

M....

Anti-Bullying NetworkYoung People's Section
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