My name is Jay and I live in New York. For me bullying started at a young age. It all started in elementary school at age 11. I have had a weight issue my whole life but, I didn’t think I was any different from anyone else. I thought I was just bigger than the other kids. Fifth grade is when my journey started. That’s when kids started calling me fat boy or saying look at the fat kid. That was the first time I was singled out as a fat kid instead of just being a kid. Thankfully I only had to finish fifth grade and I was going to move on to a different school. The same kids in my fifth grade went to the same school as me but with more students in junior high I figured I wouldn’t see them and I would have to deal with the name calling anymore. I thought junior high would be better, I was wrong.
Since there was more students in the school the bullying about my weight increased and started to become unbearable. The bullies made me feel so insecure about myself that I would only wear sweatpants to school because I thought I was too fat to wear jeans or that I was so fat they didn’t make jeans in my size. The popular kids were the ones doing most of the bullying with a few exceptions. I made a decent amount of friends and that made the bullying a little easier to deal with. A few of them I still talk to today and I would be lost without them. I was bullied all 3 years of junior high and when I finally graduated I was so happy because I thought that the bullying would be over and I wouldn’t have to deal with it ever again. Once I realized that I was advancing to high school and that none of my friends were going to my school, my happiness turned to disappointment.
I chose to go to a catholic high school. I figured that with stricter rules I wouldn’t have to worry about bullies and I could not have been more wrong if I tried. Coming off of being tortured 4 straight years because of my weight the worst was yet to come. The popular group increased and became more vicious than ever. They made fun of me because of my weight, attacked my family, made fun of the friends that I made, they would poke me with pencils while in class, they would call me names in the hallway and yell them around the school and they would basically threaten me every day. One of the friends I made was a huge hockey fan like me and he was also bullied every day. Although he was bullied they never attacked his family so in my eyes I felt like I was getting bullied worse than he was. One day while in computer class the school dean came to visit our class and he had an announcement to make. My friend had been bullied the previous day to the point where he went home, took his father’s gun and took his own life. From that day on bullying had more of an effect on me. During that same year another one of my friends was bullied to the point where he went home and suffocated himself in his garage from carbon monoxide. Two of my friends bullied to the point of no return yet I was still here. I felt like I was being bullied worse than both of them and I am still alive. Why am I still alive and they aren’t? The bullying was having more of an effect on my life and I began to think about taking my own life. I stayed home from school one day and that was the day I decided that I was going to end my life.
For some reason that I still can’t describe I couldn’t bring myself to do it. I received a call from my guidance counselor and he told me that he had received a phone call from my mother and that she was concerned and worried about me because of the way I was acting. He told me that she informed him about the bullying and he asked if I was okay and I simply answered ”I don’t know.” I told him that I would come back to school the following day and he asked me to come see him. While I was in his office he gave me the “If someone bothers you, come tell me” speech. Four years of horrendous bullying in high school, 3 years of bullying in junior high and 1 year in elementary school. Eight years of my life lost to bullying. I lost 2 friends along the way and I almost ended my journey as well.
After I graduated high school I figured my days of being bullied were over and of course I was wrong again. The bullying continued into various jobs that I have held. Basically I’ve been bullied from age 11 until the current day at age 29. I still have nightmares about the things they did and the things they said. I know that the effects of bullying have affected my life. The bullying destroyed my sense of self-worth, my self-confidence was non-existent, I am constantly depressed, I had no motivation to better my life because I felt like it wasn’t worth it and I wasn’t worth it. I am not proud of where my life is right now. I am 29, I still live at home and I am rebuilding my life. I am currently in school studying Accounting, I am rebuilding my confidence and self-worth day by day. I have friends now that truly care about me and a family that would do anything for me. People want to judge me because I still live at home or because of my weight but they only see what is in front of them, they do not know the true story of what I’ve been through. I don’t judge anyone by appearance or situations. If you are a bully then I don’t need to judge you nor does anyone else for that matter, you have already made the judgement on yourself and you are guilty of being someone that is weak and needs to put others down in order to make yourself feel better
I have come to the realization that another person’s words really have no effect on your life. As long as you love yourself then their words are meaningless and your actions will speak for themselves. Don’t allow anyone to make you feel like you don’t belong. Love yourself and turn the hate into motivation to be better than they ever will be. You are not alone. There is always someone you can talk to and there is always someone that cares about you more than you know. You can be whatever you want to be, don’t let someone’s words or actions ruin your dreams or your life. In the end if you take your life the pain you felt while alive will be felt by all those that love you and no words are worth that pain. No one is perfect and you are who you are. Don’t ever let anyone make you feel unimportant. Everyone is special in their own way. We are all different and that difference makes you unique. Being unique is a great thing! Remember there will never be another you and the world can’t afford to lose someone that is one of a kind..