Being Bullied

The Truth About Bullies
The Truth About Bullies

The summer before I was in junior high — I guess it’s called middle school now — my dad was arrested for trying to murder my mother. Without his income, our home went into foreclosure. So my mother’s parents came to the rescue and moved us from our quiet hometown to a small city where we could live rent free in their house until my grandfather was ready to retire. My grandmother also helped us get signed up on welfare.

My grandparents’ house was in a school district where nearly everyone had enough money. From day one I felt like a fish out of water, wearing my last year’s outgrown school clothes, with my wild frizzy hair, gazillions of freckles, and toothpick skinny arms and legs.

That’s right, I was the new school freak.

A week or two after I started going to that school, where almost everyone was dressed like they were posing for a fashion magazine, the school guidance counselor came into my home room and announced to the class that she needed to know if any of us were on welfare. If so, raise your hand, she said.

I had been taught to respect and obey my elders. Had it literally beaten into me that I must tell the truth at all times, or else I was going to hell. It was also pounded into my head that withholding the truth is the same as lying. So, yeah, I raised my hand. In front of all those fancy dressed kids. I raised my hand, wishing I could shoot myself instead.

After that, my classmates bullied me like they were having a contest on who could be the biggest and baddest bully of them all.

ax-forgets-tree-remembersGrrrr. Do you know how many years ago that was? This fall it will be fifty-one years. More than half a freaking century. And I still feel my blood pressure rising, just thinking about those bullies! Especially the worst bully of them all – that WITCH who called herself a guidance counselor!

It breaks my heart that any child ever has to experience being bullied. Most kids who are bullied are probably like I was, going through hell at school and even more hell at home. It’s a special kind of purgatory when everywhere you go, everyone is telling you what’s WRONG with you.

Bullies will destroy you if they can. Don’t Give Them That Satisfaction!

if-you-live-for-peoples-acceptance-life-quotes-sayings-pictures

Here is a great big grandma ((HUG)) if you need one.

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10 thoughts on “Being Bullied

  1. Diana March 22, 2016 / 2:19 am

    Loved it! Can’t believe an adult “anything” would ever ask such a thing in front of other people especially knowing how cruel kids can be.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Lady Quixote/Linda Lee March 22, 2016 / 2:22 am

      I know, right? I am appalled. So appalled, I’m not even sure if I am spelling that word right. Sigh… I need to go to bed, it’s almost 2:30 in the morning here. But I read something several hours ago about kids being bullied, and… the floodgates opened.

      Liked by 1 person

    • sleeping tiger March 22, 2016 / 8:03 am

      What a cruel woman to not make that a private thing. And what the heck was that info to the school anyway? Don’t answer, it’s rhetorical. That’s just wrong.

      I know how something from so long ago can still enrage though. I’m sorry you had to go through that.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. katiesdream2004 March 22, 2016 / 3:31 am

    I read a book about bullying in schools called “You Can’t Say, You Can’t Play” It was about making classrooms kinder. The author said it only takes a slightly raised eyebrow from a teacher to give permission to the class which kid to target. Narcs that pick on grade school children have a special place in hell. That school counselor was giving permission to the narcs in training to go after you. She was showing them which kid to beat up.

    How do kids know this? One of my daughters wrote a poem about it, like wolves circling, they smell the blood and they come. They will rip your heart out, tear off your arms and do so because the alpha organized it (school counselor in your case).

    I read your post in amazement, and I am sorry this happened to you. Yet, once again I’ve found that survivors share a very similar thread of lived experience unlike other people. I just wonder how many people that are being pulverized at home walk into a school where bullies finish off the job and destroy their hope? In my experience it was the school sport–it helped me believe in the basic depravity of mankind. From the first day I walked onto a school playground it was an onslaught. I cannot name 1 friend, from 1 grade to 11th. When the pain finally got so severe I dropped out because I couldn’t survive one more day in that gulag of persecution. (I got an education later). Should anyone try to befriend me they would be targeted, those were the unwritten rules. Those narcs in training made sure if anyone spoke to me they would be mercilessly teased.

    Oh yes, those memories of bullying 5 decades later release such a flood of adrenaline, its like a near death flashback. The irony of reading this post after my flashback this afternoon is huge.

    The trigger of the bullying flash back today was the presence of laughing children. A path I take that is normally deserted had a number of children on it, they were laughing, playing as they ran by and I wanted to disappear. I find children’s laughter terrifying (except my own grandchildren).

    As the kids laughed because they do that, I felt my face turn red and grinding my teeth I felt the shame, pain and desolation of a memory that laughter brings up. I felt the adrenaline rush–its familiar to me, its almost like a panic attack and I heard the taunting voice of a bully gang leader yelling “do your duty, put her out” when I tried to join the 4 square games.

    In fact, all games, any group activity someone shouted that phrase while the cool kids worked as a team to put me out. Because I stayed in the same school this targeting followed me and I was desperately socially awkward. I learned to disappear to avoid the pain of what they did if I tried to join anything. I remember 5th grade standing in line while a popular girl said “so who’s coming to your birthday party” to another popular girl. She said “everyone in class, except for you know who” They wouldn’t even say my name. And so, I never had a birthday nor was I invited to one. And my clothes were salvation army poorly fitting ugly. My father meanwhile dressed in expensive suits with a closet full of wing tipped shoes and a vast collection of silk ties. (Later when my parents got some wealth it made no difference, by the time it happened I was so scared I could barely engage in a conversation, but yes, in the early years, the bulls-eye on me was poverty.

    I spaced out in my mind, to survive. I now understand that I was disassociating and floated above my body for years. My mother would have gotten pleasure if she knew the level of suffering I experienced at school so she was not informed, my sister told me “when we go to school I don’t know you, don’t look at me or speak to me, I don’t want them to know I’m related.” So that was the rule while she had her popular crowd around her and kept enough distance that they didn’t even know we were related. My mother pointed out noticing all the friends my sister had “some people are born winners,” looking at my sister, and then turning her head toward me “and some are born losers”

    This continued through high school as well, and so, of course I married the first batterer that would have me. Why does it matter all these years later? Why does it provoke such adrenaline? I think in my case it is a message from the little girl standing in the corner that she needs healing still. This is what recovery is about and I thought, maybe this flashback is a reminder to pray. To pray for schools were children are being bullied to death and where teachers let them, to pray for the children like me that want to die young and see no life ahead.

    Sorry this is long your post prompts much thought.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lady Quixote/Linda Lee March 22, 2016 / 10:28 am

      No need to apologize for a long comment, Katie, I love the conversation. This is a hard conversation, but it is also healing. Kind of like surgery to remove a deadly cancer. Only… without anesthesia, lol.

      While I was reading your story I could feel my blood pressure rising again. I got angry. Angry on your behalf. I wanted to go find those horrible bullies from your distant past and teach them what it feels like to be bullied. Silly, I know, but that is what I was feeling.

      And when I read about your sister and your mother… whew…. I was seeing red.

      You wrote “I spaced out in my mind, to survive.” Me, too. Oh boy, did I! I will write more about that another time.

      Liked by 1 person

      • katiesdream2004 March 22, 2016 / 2:53 pm

        Thank you Linda for not just tolerating my rants but feeling the truth and pain in them. The affirmation is healing and your support and your story are beautiful to me. I woke us this morning listening to an MP3 devotional, it is part of my new routine. The subject for the day was hope, and included the song,” turn your eyes upon Jesus, look full into His face and the things of earth will grow dim in the light of His glory and grace.”
        I can have hope that God means for me to overcome remnants of the past that still have chains around me. I remembered as well, this drawing to God in my orphaned life, as scriptures tell us “he is close to the broken hearted and the orphan.” Essentially that is what the experience of a narcissist family is, not only our you orphaned they are “anti-parent” They are the opposite of caregivers, they are care subtractors. I’m comforted with the thought that into my orphaned heart, Christ was standing near, leaving some sort of witness in my spirit that I had a father in heaven, even if the image was distorted by the one on earth. Hope. I think ultimately this is what telling the story is about, the hope of justice, of being believed, understood and healed. Hope that our stories ultimately bring hope and healing to others as we are become vessels of grace. Light, and salt are irritating to those that love darkness, Perhaps, that explains some family hostility and persecution, that those darkness loving family members sense the light resting on the rejected child.
        I am anxious to read more of your story it helps me! Blessings!

        Liked by 1 person

        • Lady Quixote/Linda Lee March 22, 2016 / 2:59 pm

          Goosebumps… or as my precious cousin Lainie would say, chili bumps. The title of the memoir I am writing is: GOING CRAZY, from Horror to Hope. Because… all those reasons you said.

          Liked by 1 person

  3. trE March 22, 2016 / 3:35 am

    That Guidance Counselor… *shakes head* She knew what she was doing. I cannot believe the school system let her “guide” anyone. 😦

    Liked by 1 person

    • Lady Quixote/Linda Lee March 22, 2016 / 10:38 am

      I can’t believe that guidance counselor, either. She must have been a sadist. She said that because I was on welfare, she had to meet with me in her office on a regular basis. Going to see her was more fun than going to the dentist for a root canal, without any anesthesia.

      “What’s WRONG with you? We have your records from your previous school, we KNOW you made excellent grades there. But now you are failing in every subject! WHY aren’t you TRYING any more? It’s like you have given up on life!” Yeah, no kidding.

      She also acted like my family’s welfare check was coming out of her personal bank account. A real narcissistic sweetheart, she was.

      I like your profile, trE. “I am more than breath & bones. I respect thunder & honor lightning. I write. I love. I live.” Very cool. 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

      • trE March 22, 2016 / 11:10 am

        I really wish someone would’ve straightened her out before she could do that much damage. And, thank you. I think it suits me. 🙂

        Liked by 1 person

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