Some of you know I’ve been bullied for a long time, some of you don’t. I really want to tell you my story. I want to share my story to victims, bullies and people that I care about. I want to share this with people and if I can reach people with this story that would be great, but it’s not why I write this down.
If I send you this link in person it means I trust you and want you to know what’s going on with me. If you stumbled on this story or got it forwarded by someone it means someone cares. I’d like to think everything happens for a reason and even though I don’t know what it is I believe this story is meant to be found by you.
It’s a long story so please bare with me. I have a lot to say. Mostly I talk about myself and my experiences/ feelings, but I’ll also addresses bullies and victims a bit. Please be aware that this is a long and heavy story and you might be shocked. But in the end it all turned out well.
So here it goes.
After 20 I can finally say I have closed the book of me in which I’ve been bullied during primary and high school.
This weekend there was a reunion of my primary school. I had an awful time when I was there and it’s been haunting me for the last 20 years. I’ve been bullied since I can remember and it started there. I’ve been bullied for about 10 years. I don’t know how young I was but it must have been before I even was 8 years old. I was tall, had acne, glasses and in the end also braces. I don’t quite remember what people were saying to me but I know it happened.
I used to think the whole class was rotten, but it were only a handful of kids. Two where the worst, the rest just followers. An other thing I didn’t realize until now is that I wasn’t the only one in my class to be bullied. I knew I wasn’t the only one but I just realized it when I heard a classmate say she was bullied as well.
When I left primary school and started high school I was optimistic that finally that bad period was behind me. I couldn’t have been more wrong. There weren’t a lot of people from primary in my high school, but the bullying felt worse than ever. At one point in my first year in high school I thought it was enough. I didn’t want to live anymore. I wanted it all to end and I couldn’t see a way out anymore. When my dad found out he told me to write a letter to the class where I would explain my feelings and thoughts. Apparently people where shocked when the letter was read out loud. I wasn’t there, I didn’t want to, that was to much to ask of me. I changed classes right after and the first year was good, then it started again and I just left it at that. I think I blocked it all out. I don’t even remember the last couple of years of high school, I’m not sure if I want to remember either.
I think the bullying continued until I was around 17. A couple of years ago I found out I was an Highly Sensitive Person. Not to be confused with overly emotional sensitivity but I experience things different than 80% of the population. I can feel what people feel and I experience influences from around me more intense. I taste, hear, feel, smell, see more intense than others. It’s best to be explained as when women are pregnant. They are also hyper sensitive. Only difference: they have to deal with that for 9 months, or a little longer until the hormones are gone. The nervous system of an HSP is wired differently so they can pick up all the senses other people can’t. When I first realized I was HSP I thought all the bullying never happened. Especially because I didn’t remember much of it. I used to think I should stop complaining cause I didn’t remember it. Now I know that it doesn’t matter what really happened, because I know what I felt and that’s important. And even though I can’t remember it all, I know it happened in some degree and I still remember, but mostly I remember the feeling.
When I was 23 I feel like I just started living. That was the time when I left home to study abroad for a year. Maybe I wanted to leave because it was easy to run away to a foreign country and start a life there. When I look back now I notice that that was the time when I started to live my life. It feels like I was just born when I was 23 and I don’t remember much before that. I know I went to school and did things, but it feels like someone else’s life. That year in the states was the best year of my life. I made some great friendships and I had the time of my life. I had fun and people liked me and there weren’t any bullies around me. There was drama for sure, but I didn’t experience any bullying. Since then my life’s been going upward.
A few years back I started doing things and listening to my heart more. Before that I either didn’t do things or I just tagged along because it was expected of me. If I didn’t feel it and still went along I had a bad time. I never told that, because that would’t sound okay, so I kept my mouth shut and swallowed those feelings. Now I only do the things I want to do and feel lie doing. I don’t care if people want to come along with me I’ll do them no matter who tags along. I follow my dreams, go to concerts, movies, dinner etcetera. I take trips all over the globe and most of all I only do things I really want to do and not because someone else would want me to do it. Since I decided to do that I started feeling better and better. I life alone and I like not being dependent on anyone. Now I can just decide I want to go away for the weekend and if I have the money I do that. I also say no a lot more than before. If I don’t feel like going out I don’t and that feels good. I also tried to stay positive. It was hard and sometimes it will be so hard but if you have a smile on your face you soften your pain. I don’t like to complain, never have, never will and I caught myself in the act of complaining a lot. So when I was aware I tried not to. Sometimes it’s good to complain, but to much. I hate negativity, even if it comes from within myself, I also always hated that, and I try to stay away from negative things/ people/ news etcetera. It feels good to leave all that stuff behind and don’t pay attention to it. Pay attention to the good things in life, don’t get me wrong I know how hard that is, but if you try than at one point you see it more and more and the negativity will get smaller and smaller.
When I used to think about reunions I always thought I would never go to one. Especially not to a school where the kids treated me so bad. My first instinct when I found out this reunion was planned, was: No way, I’m not going. Later that year I received a couple of friend requests on Facebook from former classmates. I accepted and a couple talked about the reunion and that it was supposed to be fun. I still hesitated but a couple of weeks before the reunion I figured: Why the hell not. If I don’t like it and don’t have fun I can always go home again. So I decided to go. I was pretty nervous, cause I didn’t know what to expect. That feeling went away quickly when I had arrived though.
There were about 12 of us at the reunion and we had a blast. It was good seeing all of them and when I can look back now I know those people were the same in primary school. They hadn’t changed, I just never realized, or just couldn’t see, that they never did anything to me.
It’s very sad to see that a few rotten apples can make you feel everybody is against you. I realize now that not everybody was against me back then and it feels good I can just be myself around them now. I’m proud of myself, and the other people who’d been bullied in our class, that I/we showed up and had a great time. It’s a great group and we all talked about going and get a drink sometime. We might, but the intention is good and it felt sincere.
At the reunion I heard that one of the bullies was scared to come and one other had a pretty bad life.
When I heard about the later one I thought: “Karma is a ………” I don’t usually think or say that but that was the first thing that popped into my mind. To this person I would like to say: I feel bad you’re life isn’t going well and I forgive you for what you put me through.
To the person that was afraid if showing up I would like to say: If you showed up and apologized we could shake hands. I would’ve thought that would be pretty amazing if that happened. That would be an act of pure courage. Now I would like to say: I forgive you and now it’s time to forgive yourself and start living your life. I don’t know if I would be able to tell it to their faces, I have no idea how I’d react if I would run into them, but I’d like to believe that I could happily look them in the eye.
The day after the reunion I went to my parents house for dinner and after that I took a nice long bath. I told them about the reunion and that it felt like some weight had been lifted. I felt different and I was proud of myself for going, they were as well. It felt silly to be proud, but it’s was a big thing so yes I can be proud for facing my past. The moment I sat in the bathtub I knew it. I thought “And now it’s over, its done” and it felt so good! I left the lights out so it was dark in the bathroom but I needed that. I knew it was over and I felt lighter. When I walked home and thought about my realisation I wanted to share it with a friend. So I called a friend. I told her that this book was finally closed and I needed someone to talk to. When I told her I got teared up I felt weird about that, which I said. My friend wisely told me that I was allowed to shed some tears. I closed a book that had a hold on me for over 20 years, and it’s good to let the emotions run freely.
The moment I walked into my street I really felt I needed a hug. I went to my neighbours and got one. Normally I just go home and let that feeling pass. This day I didn’t, I needed a hug and some comfort/ relieve and support. I hung out with her and it felt good. It’s good to feel sad/ angry/ happiness and relieve.
I also feel my pit in my stomach gone. For the last couple of years I had this nervous feeling in my stomach if I thought about something I had to do, even if I just thought about going to the grocery store. When I woke up this morning that was gone. I feel different today, better I think. I can also feel myself better, if that makes any sense. I feel like ME and that’s a good thing. I also suddenly don’t care what people think of my. I’m writing this partly in the movie theatre where I’m at a festival where they show 5 movies on one day. I’m writing this during the movies and there are people sitting behind me who can watch. I used to feel tense if I would write something so personal and if people were able to watch what I write. I don’t anymore. I feel a lot of relieve right now.
For the people who have been bullied and are still struggling with it I would like to say: It’s okay, it takes time and you’re time will come also that you can let it go. It’ okay for you to cry about it, yell, scream and struggle with it. They destroyed your life and that’s not to be taken lightly. People handle it differently and every story is different, but I believe that bullies aren’t just ruining the life of the person they bully, but they’re also ruining their own. They probably don’t see that when they bully but they experience that later in life. I’m not saying it’s okay to be bullied, definitely not but if you hurt someone it’s not just the one person you hurt it’s also yourself. If not, than you’re not human.
Maybe you want to know how exactly I made it to this point. I don’t know. I’ve been working on myself for the last 7 years now (since I feel like I’m alive) and I’ve been to counselling, talked to a lot of people but I don’t know if that helped in a great way. I picked things up here and there but it wasn’t major. But then again if I don’t think about things aren’t big other people might see it differently. I’ve always thought that when I went and got some help it was the right time in my life. If I wasn’t ready for it, than I wouldn’t seek it out. Not that it made it not hard to seek help, but when I got it it wasn’t a secret. Don’t be afraid to get help. Be aware that there’s so many types of help you might not find it at once. Maybe all you need is someone who just listens to your story, maybe it’s building houses for people who lost their home, maybe it’s being a big brother/ sister, maybe it’s just writing down your story I don’t know. It doesn’t matter. What I do know is that when you’re ready for help you’ll get it.
I would like to share this story with as many people as I can. Pay it forward. Maybe it reaches someone that needs some help or guidance with his/ her past.
I’m not sending this story in the world for people to feel pity for me. I don’t. It happened, it was awful and now it’s over, finally. I don’t want and I sure as hell don’t need any pity. I want to help people to understand what bullying does to people and I want to help others with similar experiences. Do what you want with this story. Even if this story only reaches one person in a way that changes them for the better I would be glad. If it doesn’t than that’s fine too, my story is out there and I’m positive that with this story something positive will come out of it.
Please pass it on if you feel the need. I want to help people process their past and I don’t mind people contacting me about it.
My final say is that I feel so much better, there really is a weight that’s been lifted and even though it feel really weird/ different I’m glad it’s gone. I feel good and just keep doing what I do best: have fun, laugh, smile, do the things I want to do, hang out with great people and stay positive and give something back when and where I can. I like it when I can help people, make them feel better and put a smile on their face/ be there for them when they need an ear/ shoulder. So that’s what I’ll keep doing.