This week is anti-bullying week and so I would like to say a few words to the utter gits who made my life at school back in the 1980's such an utter misery.
Those few words are:
Those few words are:
UP YOURS BULLIES!!!!!
Yes. That's right. It took many many years for me to recover from the dreadful things you did to me and said to me. But now I'm in my 40's and I've realised you are the losers, in so many ways.
You spat on me, mocked my clothes, my name, my hair, my shoes and my accent which wasn't regional enough for you.
|Madmumof7 in pink with friends on a happy day at school (sixth form)|
You harassed me because I was one of the brighter pupils at our fairly cr*p school. That doesn't mean I was particularly clever but compared to many at school with me who had awful home lives with hunger, abuse and neglect I was one of the lucky ones and one of the relatively few who went onto further education.
You mocked me because my Dad was a well known local reporter. You made fun of me because my (rightly) protective parents steered me towards academia, healthy hobbies, nice friends.
Oh and a word to those (few) nice friends, If any of them read this. Thank-you for the many times you defended me, soothed me, protected me. It really was appreciated.
|madmumof7 on left with lovely friends Louise and Sharon. My other|
bestie Julie not pictured. But thanks to her too!
Deep breath. You mocked me for my teeth. OK they might look funny to you. My rabbit teeth are the result of a fairground ride gone horribly wrong when I was very small and there is nothing that can be done about them. Did you not think as a teen I might already be self conscious? Well I suppose it made a change to taking the piss out of my lack of boobs during my secondary school days. Don't worry - I made up for that in later life!
I was teased for wearing the correct school uniform. And wearing a coat when it was cold. And I have small narrow feet and had little choice in school shoes - so you laughed at those too.
I reacted by alternatively hiding or being a clown. Inside I was terrified. I remember once at the age my eldest daughter is now, being surrounded by tall, nasty girls spitting at my coat. I refused to cry. I just froze like a rabbit in the headlights until they got bored. They stole my bus money and walked away. I walked home, glad that the rain was washing the horrible stuff off my coat.
I never told my parents. I never told a teacher. I never told anyone.
My children have grown up knowing that bullying is wrong. They know to tell an adult. A range of schemes and Theatre in Education groups and other initiatives ram the message home. Me and DH have added to that -we encourage our children to tell us if anything is worrying or upsetting them so we can help. So far it has worked, kind of.
My disabled and petite son was thrown from boy to boy like a rugby ball. My other son was teased for being blonde so much he was scared to go on the school bus. Another child was mocked for wearing glasses. Each time they told us and we and/or the teachers dealt with it.
Apart from once. When all else failed I hunted down my child's bully and informed him quietly but admittedly in a menacing fashion that I am not like all these other nice Home Counties parents. I told him I am YamYam (Black Country born) and I would personally deal with him if he so much as looked at my child again. The bullying stopped. I am embarrassed but not sorry, even though some might say this approach made me a bully. I maintain I was just being a parent.
Bullying is wrong. We need to keep on top of it. Each tragic suicide caused by bullies breaks my heart.
If you are bullied TELL SOMEONE.
If you know of someone being bullied TELL SOMEONE.
Keep telling til the bullying stops. The one day you will be as strong as me and ready to tell them:
UP YOURS BULLIES!!!!