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(Notice: All of the bullies' names are changed for privacy's sake.)

I was bullied a lot in school. Perhaps not as bad as some, but it was definitely worse than schoolyard teasing. I count myself lucky that the internet wasn't as prevalent in the 90's as it is in the 2000's and beyond. Myspace and Facebook didn't exist yet. The insults, torment and hate I dealt with never ventured beyond my mom's car door. Today, many bullied children go home, get on Myspace or Facebook and the cruelty continues right there in their own house. If I was in school today instead of over ten years ago, I have no doubt the bullying I experienced would have extended to the internet.

In my youth, I had many behavior issues related to a yet undiagnosed autism spectrum disorder called Pervasive Developmental Disorder - Not Otherwise Specified (PDD-NOS). I live with sensory issues that can lead to stimulus overload, I have the emotional maturity of an eight year old and I'm socially inept. Despite this, my IQ is above average, so I know I don't have an intellectual disability. Since age seven I've been taking Dexedrine(or Dextrostat, its cheaper generic brand), to control my hyperactivity. I started with Ritalin, but I had a dangerous paradoxical reaction to it(my hands shook and my heart raced), so my pediatrician tried Dexedrine. I never had to change the dosage since that first prescription over twenty years ago. That is the proof that it works for me.

My medication is extremely important and I never miss a dose. Without my medication I honestly can not function at all. My mind starts going like a popcorn popper. I can't control my impulses, thoughts or my emotions. I go from having a short fuse on my temper to no fuse at all. I'm afraid of causing someone damage or injury in the event I have a tantrum. Yes, at my age, I can have temper tantrums if I go off my medicine. It is not a matter of "just try to control it." Try not to blink when you sneeze. It's impossible because it's an uncontrollable reflex. My hyperactive behavior without my pill is the same way: uncontrollable. I need this medicine to behave in an acceptable manner within society.

I suspect now that my behavior problems, delayed growth and delayed physical development made me into a perfect bullying target. I was smaller than my peers, I still look much younger than my actual age(but only without makeup!) and I still have trouble with age appropriate behavior. At age nine, I had the appearance of a five year old. At eighteen, I looked twelve. Now, in my thirties(it's the year 2012 as I write this), I've had people think I was sixteen or seventeen. I get carded if I ask for wine when I go out to eat. I like looking young now, but I hated when I was growing up!

The bullying began in fourth grade, after my family moved from one house to another and I changed schools. The year was 1989 and I was nine years old. I don't remember a lot of what happened because I blocked most of it out of my mind. I know the teacher at my new school turned out to be as much of a bully as my peers, but that's getting ahead of myself.

At first, I enjoyed my time at my new school. I had a doctor's note stating I had to leave the classroom at a specified time to take my medication at the nurse's office. My mom verbally reminded this teacher when we all met for the first time, and it seemed to be a non-issue. I was excited to explore the new playground at recess, and that is where my first experiences with bullying began.

A few kids from my class came up to me at the drinking fountain and told me I should be playing with the lower graders on the other end of the playground. At that time, I didn't understand what was happening. I introduced myself to them and told them I was in their class. I thought they just made a mistake.

If only I knew.

As I said earlier, I blocked much of that year from my memory and can't recall every minor bullying incident. I can't say for certain how or when the bullying accelerated, but there are more than a few traumatic experiences that managed to stick in my mind. These are just the ones I still remember. There are likely more that I don't.

~ The teacher started refusing to let me go to the office for my medication, which exacerbated all of my behavior issues. The teacher KNEW this would make my behavior worse, and she wouldn't let me get my medication. At that time, I was too young to notice the difference in myself with and without my pill, so I never said anything to my parents. In hindsight, I wish I did.

~ With access to my medication denied, I became belligerent. I acted obnoxious in class until I was sent outside. This was a way to escape the boy next to me who constantly kicked my legs or hit me in the arm with his fist. Telling the teacher never did a thing, but I sure got in a lot of trouble if I swung back at him.

~ I was never allowed bathroom breaks during class. I was afraid to use the restrooms during recess due to other girls following me in there and verbally abusing me every time, so I just stopped going to the bathroom at school. As a result, I would not use the restroom between 8:30 a.m. and 2:45 p.m.. I was bursting by the time I got home. One good thing came of this: I have a very strong bladder!

~ My teacher refused to assist me if I raised my hand for help, but she went right over to other students who asked for the same thing. My mom confronted her about this, and my teacher's response was, "That's right. I don't help kids who can't learn." (After this, my mom got me into part time special ed where I had HELP with my schoolwork. It was too late in the year for me to switch schools again, but at least my falling grades were pulled back up.)

~ There were several incidents where I sat down at lunch time and discovered someone stuffed my lunch pail full of grass, dirt or feces. I began hiding it in the bushes to avoid that until the teacher discovered me doing this. She made me put it back on the lunch pail cart, saying that I deserved what I got.

~ The very day I had to put my lunch pail back on the cart, someone tampered with my food. I noticed my sandwich bag was open when my mom always sealed it tight. My peanut butter and jelly sandwich looked wrong and smelled strange. Upon showing it to my teacher, she just said, "Shut up and eat it before somebody does something worse to it." Well, teachers were the boss, so I ate the sandwich. My mouth was instantly in pain, and tears ran down my face. I choked every bite down. My throat, chest and stomach burned. In class after lunch, I vomited on my desk and the floor. I was forced to clean my vomit up and was not allowed to go to the nurse. I had horrible stomach cramps that doubled me over my desk, and by some miracle I didn't soil myself. I went home and had severe diarrhea. My mouth had blisters for a week. The tampering turned out to be red chili peppers. After this, my mom gave me money to buy lunch and the food tampering ceased. (And she and my dad both made a lot of noise at the school over this, but NOTHING was done because the person that did it wouldn't come forward!) Spicy foods still cause me painful digestive disturbances, but I can't tell if it's due to the mental association or a physical intolerance. Maybe it's both.

~ I got into a physical altercation with a boy I'll call Sean. He was much bigger than I was. I caught him tampering with my lunch pail and ran at him to chase him away. Sean picked up a rock and threw it, but missed. I picked that rock up in a rage and hurled it back at him. I don't know if I hit him with it or not. I saw him running away, so I turned to walk into class. He called my name. I turned around and he threw a bigger rock than before. It hit me right above my left eye, and I still believe the impact made me black out. I sat up screaming with a bump as big as a golf ball right above my eye. I definitely had a concussion. The teacher saw the whole thing. She told me to sit down, stop crying and wouldn't let me go to the nurse. By the time school ended for the day, the bump on my head doubled in size. I wouldn't tell my parents what happened. I'm pretty sure I had a tiny skull fracture. I still have an indent in the bone on that spot.

~ I continued to act out at school. I was trying to get expelled and escape that horrible place. It didn't work, and all my efforts resulted in repeated visits to the principal, being benched during recess and having notes sent home to my parents. I always got in trouble, the bullies NEVER did. EVER. Not even when they did something to me right in front of the teacher.

~ My behavior at home was an utter nightmare. I threw tantrums before and after school, I treated my parents the way I was being treated in the classroom and I started alienating the few friends I had in my neighborhood. I was full of hatred and out of control. My parents took me to a child psychologist after I set a laundry room trash can on fire, but due to insurance issues my parents were forced to pull me back out. I never messed with fire again, but my belligerence continued until the school year ended.

Summer vacation offered me the most blessed relief from that nightmare school. I begged my parents not to send me back there in the fall. They were understanding of the issue and agreed. Come the next fall, I rode the "short bus" to a more distant school where I had two fantastic bully-free years. I was in full time special ed classes with wonderful teachers who worked with me instead of against me.

Fifth grade is the year I met my oldest and best friend. Her name is Elizabeth, and we still talk on the phone even though we live in different states. She was a grade behind me. Later on, in junior high and high school, I would hang out with her off and on.

My fifth grade teacher discovered my total lack of reading comprehension. I read words and spelled perfectly, but wasn't able to connect the written words with what they meant. I wrote sentences that didn't make any sense, and somehow I got passed up from grade to grade. Nothing I have ever written since fifth grade would exist now if it wasn't for this teacher. She paired words with pictures or acted out the sentences until it all clicked. The moment was just like Helen Keller connecting the finger spelling for "water" with the stuff flowing over her hand. This wonderful teacher said reading is making pictures in our mind to go with the words. It made SO much sense because I have an insane imagination. I've loved to read ever since!

Sixth grade was just as good as fifth grade. I rode the same bus and never had any notable incidents. Fifth and sixth grade saw a giant improvement in my behavior and my grades, but my emotional and developmental delays became more obvious as I advanced through school. As a result, I stuck out from my peers more than ever and became a target yet again.

From seventh grade on, school was my worst nightmare. The mental scars and self esteem issues I have now are a direct result of what happened to me from junior high and the years following.

Seventh grade was nothing like I expected. I remember walking into my new middle school and noticing the lack of a playground. "What? No more recess?" I thought to myself. That was shocking to me. I also noticed my peers all looked so much older than me and wore cooler clothes.

Seventh grade brought on the whole new aspect of changing for P.E. class. At twelve years old, I had the physical body of an eight year old. I was the only girl not wearing a bra, and the mocking started right away. P.E. was my last class of the day in seventh grade, so I went home in tears. My mom took me out and bought me some training bras. Yes, training bras, when everyone else had underwire. But at least I had a bra on the next time I took off my shirt.

I wasn't very athletic. I could run fast and that's about it. Dodgeball became "turn Cyndi into a target" and people threw me the ball during flag football just for the excuse to knock me over on the field. Going to my gym teacher about it did nothing. It was always "just an accident, she tripped!" I was never seriously injured, but P.E. became the class I dreaded.

I didn't have a lot of trouble with people during most of my classes, but lunch was a totally different matter. Every day it was a barrage of comments and insults about how I looked, my clothes and the pink plastic backpack I used. Due to my small stature, finding age appropriate clothing was IMPOSSIBLE, so I always looked like I stumbled out of a fourth grade classroom. My clothes were also kind of dumpy, since I often held on to some outfits for two to three years in a row. I literally did not grow for three years, and finding clothes I liked in my size was always a disaster. I had maybe two outfits that looked age appropriate, and everything else was ugly jeans and T-shirts that happened to fit.

A few teachers were overheard asking me if I was there to wait for an older sibling, and I had to tell them politely that I was actually a student. The bullies loved that one, and they loved to remind me about it constantly at lunch time. As if I wasn't self conscious enough, right? "Go back to fourth grade!" They said. After that, I hid around the corner from the school library to eat my lunch alone.

I thought eighth grade would be better. I turned thirteen in July of 1993. I was a teenager! I even expected to wake up on my thirteenth birthday having magically developed curves, but I was sadly disappointed to see a toothpick of a girl staring back at me in the mirror. I grew hair where you're supposed to grow hair, but my body never really developed physically. The skinny figure I saw in the mirror on my thirteenth birthday is what I still have today. Only my face changed over the years, but not by much.

Two good things about junior high: I met Charles when I was in eighth grade, and Elizabeth popped up at my school as a seventh grader. I hung out with her at lunch whenever I could, but I had my eye on Charles. I thought he was cute the first time I saw him. He was kind of tall and broad with Italian olive skin and an Italian last name. He became my boyfriend, and we went steady all the way until after high school graduation. Due to a difficult home life, he was rarely at school and his grades were terrible, but he made me feel normal. We discovered how close together we lived and he came over to my house whenever he could. He took me to my senior prom, and that is probably the only positive memory I have of high school. We were together for about six years; longer than some marriages. Later on, he disappeared from my life without a word. It wasn't because of me. He ran away from home and I haven't heard from him since. I comfort myself with the thought that he didn't want to tell me because he couldn't bear to see me cry. I still think about him and wonder if he thinks of me.

I could go on about Charles, but this isn't about my brief love life.

Eighth grade introduced me to choir, which I discovered I love. Many years after finishing school, I joined a church choir that I still sing with today, and I attribute that love of choir for stumbling on this class during registration. However, it didn't come without bullying. The teacher, who taught both at the junior high and high school, would play a pivotal role in humiliating me later on in high school. I'll get to that later.

My behavior issues were still a problem in eighth grade, and they would continue throughout high school. Each time I was bullied, I acted out. Teachers didn't seem to care that I was being bullied. I wanted attention, and the only way I knew how to get it was to cause trouble. Looking back now, I regret it. I lacked the communication skills to express the severity of what other kids were doing to me.

Eighth grade was also the first and only time I was ever in a physical fight. I don't remember what started it. I think I called the other girl, I'll call her Silvia, a b**** after she mocked me for wearing a mood ring on my right index finger like Vada from My Girl. Silvia lunged at me and started yelling in my face. I don't like people in my face, so I shoved her away. She charged me. I moved out of the way to let her pass me, turned around and dug my fingers into her curly hair. I grasped the hair near her scalp and pulled until she screamed in pain. She was unable to turn around and hit me, but her screaming attracted teachers and other students alike. I won that fight, if you can even call it one, but I got in trouble. Her friends were able to twist it into me starting it when that wasn't true, and it was just my word against these other girls.

We both got detentions for it. Silvia got one and I got two "for starting it." From then on her friends hounded me day after day. One of them, I'll call her Rita, was in my gym class again. She threatened to beat me up after school every single day. I literally ran out of the school to my mom's car in terror because Rita was a lot taller and stronger than me. She was one of the people who loved to tackle or trip me during flag football back in seventh grade. Being tackled on grass sucked. I didn't want to find out what being tackled on cement or asphalt felt like.

In another class, a different girl, I'll call her Kelly, would literally stare at me. The desks were arranged in clusters of four. Kelly sat across from me, making it hard to not see her in my peripheral vision. I despise being stared at, so I would look back and make a nasty face at her. I thought doing so would disgust her into looking away. Nope. I endured this day after day. Finally, I went to the teacher of that class and asked to switch seat clusters with somebody, but his seating chart was set up alphabetically and he wouldn't do it.

Near the end of the year, I won a medal at an awards assembly. I don't remember what it was for. I think it was an outstanding achievement award in my English class. Most of the crowd boo'ed me and some yelled out insults like "retard!" The principal got on the microphone and told them how inappropriate that was and the next person to yell an insult would spend a week in detention, but the damage was done. After I sat down again, fighting tears, the boy and girl behind me stage whispered to each other that I didn't deserve my award and I only got it because the teachers "felt sorry for the poor b****." No achievement of mine was good enough to make them back off. I felt like a loser. I would have thrown the medal and its corresponding certificate in the trash, but my parents were so proud of me for winning them. They framed both, but I never felt proud of my "pity award."

Finally, on the last day of school, I thought I could finally get one full day without any kind of trash-talk from other people. Not so. Just five minutes after the little junior high graduation ceremony was over and we were released to go home, Rita walked past me and hissed, "You suck, Cyndi. I hope you die."

Summer once again brought me a reprieve. Junior high was a thing of the past. High school was just around the corner. High school! Like the people in movies and on TV! A new school meant a new start, right? Oh, not really. Not for me. Between the years of 1994 and 1998, my school life was pure, unadulterated Hell.

Does anyone remember Carrie with Sissy Spacek? I saw that movie, and I was just like Carrie. Except I didn't have telekinesis and my mom wasn't crazy. That movie was a favorite because I wanted to do exactly what she did to her tormenters. I loved the part when the high school gym burned down, and wished it was mine. I hated high school THAT much.

Some time during the summer before I started high school, I began seeing a clinical psychologist for extensive testing. Throughout my childhood I endured blood tests, MRI's and a barrage of doctors all trying to figure out why I wasn't growing. They all came up with different diagnoses, but it was this psychologist who finally put every issue I had together and diagnosed my PDD-NOS shortly after I turned fifteen. I was a sophomore then. We could have used this knowledge when I was so much younger. Better late than never, right? Right!

I owe this woman my life. She talked me out of hurting others, got me through my worst rages and helped me through my suicidal thoughts. I would not be sane, nor would I be who I am, if it wasn't for Dr. B's help. She was the voice of caring during a time where I felt powerless. And I was powerless, but I wasn't powerless alone.

Summer's end in 1994 meant people from other junior high schools besides mine came to my high school. This included kids from the horrible school I went to during fourth grade. I now had them at my high school as well as the bullies from junior high. They changed a lot. I still looked exactly the same as I did in fourth grade, except I finally got my growth spurt and grew a foot taller than before. I had reached the height I'll be for the rest of my life. I'm five feet and one inches tall. (That's about one hundred and fifty-five centimeters for you metric folks.)

Everyone else seemed to blossom into adult-looking people over the summer, but not me. Nope. I looked like a fifth grader next to my peers in stature and physical development.

Orientation gave me the first taste of what was to come.

I was waiting in line to have my picture taken for the yearbook when Sean showed up. He got right behind me, now a towering boy with broad shoulders, and looked down his nose at me with enough contempt to make me feel an inch tall.

"Oh, look, the midget! Hey guys! It's the midget!"

No, I don't have any form of dwarfism. I'm just very petite. I wish I thought to say that back then. Instead, I rudely told Sean where to stick his head and he walked away laughing.

I put it out of my mind and smiled for my freshman portrait. Surely Sean would grow up in the month between orientation and the first day of high school. I mean, really, wasn't everyone who went to high school mature enough to be an adult? Surely, everything I saw on TV and in the movies had some thread of realism, right?


Sean was in almost every class I had. The only exception were the Women's Ensemble choir class and the three RSP classes I took due to needing extra help with math and study hall. I'm still awful at math, by the way.

Keep in mind that I still had a lot of behavior problems of my own. My emotional maturity never caught up to my peers. While everyone around me watched things like Friends and what-not, I was obsessed with the Mighty Morphin Power Rangers(Kimberly, the Pink Ranger, was my favorite!), but I knew being public about that wouldn't go over well. I kept it mostly secret, but I carried a toy Power Morpher with the pterodactyl coin in my pocket and I had a Pink Ranger watch. It was small and you couldn't tell what it was unless you looked right at it and saw the Pink Ranger on the watch face. I kept a picture of their leader and mentor, Zordon, in the back of my locker. I wore a lot of pink to school. I liked to pretend in secret that I was really a Power Ranger. I still have that toy Morpher, by the way, but the gold show coin went missing and I now keep a pink movie coin in it. Only Charles and Elizabeth knew how truly crazy I was about the show.

I think other people caught on as the school years progressed. A couple people made Power Ranger jokes about me, but those weren't a big deal. I refused to let other people ruin the one show that let me escape reality for awhile.

Sean must have told his friends about me, and he had several friends in my freshmen Earth Systems class. On just the fourth day at school, I started having erasers, paper clips and spit wads flicked at me from various angles. Of course I reacted loudly in protest, and this got me in trouble for disrupting the class. The boys responsible for causing my reaction were never punished, not even if I said why I made noise. I had enough one day and went to the teacher after class. Her response? "Just ignore it. They'll get bored and stop."

It's impossible to ignore a flying spit wad when it hits you in the eye. It's hard to ignore a paper clip bouncing across your worksheet. It's hard to ignore an eraser hitting you in the back of the head. I tried. It didn't stop. Once, I dug fourteen spit wads out of my hair after that class. There was the fine proof of how well "ignoring it" worked. After class that same day, I asserted myself and stood up to these kids. I told them I wasn't going to stand for that stupidity and they had to stop NOW.

They always say standing up to your bullies makes them stop. It worked on TV. Life isn't like TV. Oh how I wish it was.

Everything that came after is such a blur. The bullying didn't stop. It got worse.

During the worst of it, I stood in front of the medicine cabinet in the kitchen. I looked through all the pills available and hoped to find something capable of killing me quickly. Benadryl looked like a good candidate if I swallowed them all at once. So did my mom's prescription muscle relaxants. I decided to pour Benadryl pills into my mouth. I looked up and thought, "God, if you don't want me up there, make me spit these out."

I sneezed. I kid you not, I sneezed. The pills went everywhere. Not even God wanted me. (Now, I think He had a reason for me to stay, but back then it felt like another rejection.) I sobbed as I cleaned the pills up and tried to pretend I was fine. That was the only time I attempted suicide. I never told anyone about it, but I thought about ending my life a lot as the bullying and school years progressed.

Elizabeth joined me at my high school when I was a sophomore. I hung out with her a bit, but sometimes I avoided her in fear of my bullies going after her. She would have stood up for me and become their secondary target. I didn't want that for her. She is still such a sweet person, and I didn't want my bullies to "ruin" her gentle personality. I never really told her the full extent of what I went through, but sometimes I muttered to her about how "this girl is a b**** and that guy sucks c***s for A's."

I don't recall the grades I was in when every incident happened, so I'll list the experiences I had between my freshmen and senior year in no particular order:

~ The scariest bully I had was a boy I'll call Mick. Mick wasn't in any of my classes, but he always found me in the hall before school, between classes, during the snack break or during lunch. He was strong and heavyset, and looked imposing to tiny little me. Every day, he threatened me with physical violence, rape and death. Some of the things he said to me:

"I'm going to slit your throat while you sleep."

"Hey, guess what? I'm going to stab you with this." He would show me his switchblade, which was NOT allowed on school grounds.

"I want to see you bleed to death with my c*** in your mouth."

"I'm going to f*** you until your p**** bleeds. I want to watch you die choking on my cum."

"I know where you live. I'm coming to your house to murder you in front of your parents."

"Look out your window tonight. I'll be waiting to kill you."

Those are TERRIFYING things to hear, aren't they? I reported the above to the school counselors. Their response?

"Oh, he's just being a boy. He probably has a crush on you. Just ignore it and he'll stop."

It didn't stop. Every day of my high school life, I had to see and hear him.

I was so afraid of this boy that I would bolt from my last class and run all the way home carrying thirty pounds of books. It was the first time I was allowed to walk to and from school alone. I got myself in enough trouble to require being driven to and from school because I didn't want to tell my parents about this boy, and didn't tell them for a long time.

I went to bed at night terrified he might be outside my window, waiting for me to fall asleep. I hated being near any windows with the curtains open at night because I feared looking outside and seeing his face. When I look back now, I realize how ridiculous that fear was. This boy didn't know where I lived; even if he did, we had motion lights that would catch him before he got within twenty feet of the windows. But oh boy, at the time, my fear was very real. My parents finally found out about it and took the issue to the school office. They were brushed off with the recommendation to change schools. Moving schools wasn't an option for me. The school I went to had the RSP program. Other high schools didn't, and I needed that extra help to keep my grades above D's. I was trapped, and my parents were so mad, but they were stuck too.

~ One time, Mick tried to touch my chest while I was walking into the gym. I screamed at him to take his hand off me and slapped his face. There were several witnesses to him touching me. The gym teacher who saw it reprimanded me and gave me a referral. Not one person stood up for me. They all said I hit Mick. It was my word against theirs.

~ My sophomore year's yearbook photo has what some call a "Mona Lisa smile." The photo has a pink backdrop. My chin is covered in zits(couldn't afford to have them airbrushed off) and my messy braid is draped over my left shoulder. I'm wearing a little heart pendant and a sleeveless blue and white striped dress. The smile on my face is actually dropping; the photographer caught it just a millisecond before it was gone. All because Sean yelled out, "Hey Cyndi! Don't break the camera with your ugly face, you dumb b****!" right as the flash went off. I hate that photo now because it captured me wanting to die.

~ Girls were just as cruel as boys. Due to my body's failure to develop normally, I was mocked for being "flat chested" and ugly. This was CONSTANT. Every single thing I wore and did was brought to peoples' attention and mocked. Especially if I made mistakes. The bullying about my figure got so bad that I had my mom buy me padded bras to give the appearance of having breasts. It didn't stop the bullying, but it made ME feel a little more "normal."

~ I was cornered in the restroom by a group of girls who wiped their used tampons all over my skin and a brand new shirt. Pretty disgusting, huh? I was learning about AIDS in Health class, and I already had issues with being a hypochondriac. I lived in fear that I had AIDS for a long time because of those girls. I was too afraid to say anything and look "more stupid than I already am." Fortunately, if anyone cares, I'm happy to report that I'm still HIV negative.

~ I began to menstruate when I was fifteen. I know, that's late, but my body did everything later than everybody else. Everyone else I knew had theirs, and I began to doubt I would ever get mine. I was so relieved to know that my female organs worked properly that I was stupidly vocal about it. "I'm finally a woman!" I said to people. The next day, someone got into my backpack and took the only extra pad I had, drew a phallus on it and stuck it to the black board right before my sophomore history class started. I got a referral for it after the girl who did it blamed me, and I had to get a new pad from the nurse. I never mentioned my menses again in public.

~ My grandma, whom I was close to, passed away from brain cancer on November 9, 1995. I got my class ring the same day. People heard about it when I returned the following Monday. One girl came up to me and said, "You're cancer. You gave your grandma cancer. You killed her." Somebody else asked me if she died screaming because she saw my ugly face too many times.

~ One of my sensory issues involves light touches. A feather gliding over most peoples' skin tickles. To me, it feels like a scalding hot butter knife. People in one of my history classes discovered this and used it to make me miserable. The biggest perpetrator was a girl I'll call Wendy. She walked past my desk and barely let her pencil or paper brush my arm. I cried out in shock and pain, or I smacked her hand away, and I got in trouble for causing a disruption. "She keeps touching me!" and "She's rubbing her pencil over my arm!" are really childish to say in a high school classroom. It gave people another reason to mock me. I started working with my arms pulled really close to my body in all my classes. Wendy mocked this by imitating my pose. Speaking to the teacher later resulted in the same spiel: "oh, just ignore it." Right, just like you can ignore it if you drop something painfully heavy on your foot. Okay. Sure.

~ I was walking through the quad area during lunch time when an entire salad hit me in the back. Lettuce, dressing and other condiments covered my upper body like the blood covered Carrie at her prom. Okay, not quite as bad, but I had a new, expensive dress on that was instantly and irreparably ruined. Since the quad was full of people, and because the cold salad shocked me enough to make me shriek, I had at least twenty five percent of the entire school staring at me. Then they all started to laugh. I looked behind me to see the girls who did it. The same girls who rubbed their tampons all over me. I don't know their names, or maybe I forgot them. They were congratulating each other. I stood there while everyone around me guffawed, and not a single soul offered to help me. I had to push through laughing faces to reach the office and call my mom. My mom brought me a change of clothes and cleaned out my hair the best she could. She raised Hell at the school, but the girls who threw the salad wouldn't come forward. The school officials decided what to do after my mom left, and I'll never forget overhearing them, "it isn't worth the trouble looking for who did it, and we can't punish the whole school over a salad."

They thought it happened over food. I felt like the stupid salad was more important than my feelings. I didn't matter enough for a single person to stand up for me. I wasn't worth the trouble.

To make matters worse, my dad got exasperated after hearing about how I had yet another temper tantrum at home. My dad had trouble accepting my diagnosis, and tried to push me to be more mature and more like my peers. I never could. I still can't. I was told I was acting like a baby if I cried, showed anger or laughed too loud. I started believing that any show of emotion was "too immature." I punished myself for showing emotions by scratching my arms and legs bloody with push pins and blaming the cats for the marks. I couldn't be "me" anywhere except in Dr. B's office, where I would vent and rage until my appointment time was up.

The night of the salad incident(I begged my mom not to tell my dad, and she didn't), my dad got tired of me complaining about how people were so nasty at school. He said, "Well, what did YOU do to cause these kids to tease you?"

I wanted to respond, "Gee, dad, why do they do it? I EXIST!"

Today, I don't think my dad realizes how much his remark hurt me. I never told him. He wanted me to fit in with my peers just as badly as I wanted to fit in, but that was never to be.

I went silent about bullying after my own father unwittingly convinced me that I deserved it. I (erroneously) believed talking about it at home would get me in trouble, so I just stopped mentioning it. The salad incident was the last time I "told on" the people bullying me, and the experiences I describe below went completely unreported.

~ The "tampon girls" bodily forced me into a restroom and shoved my face into a toilet. It didn't have any urine or feces in it at the time, but knowing it did before made me vomit while my face was still underwater. The only reason the girls let me up is because a teacher came in after hearing them laugh. They told her I got sick and they wanted to be sure I was okay, and I just went with their story to avoid further conflict. I told the nurse that I had food poisoning and got sent home. It was during this time at home that I poured the pills into my mouth and sneezed them back out.

~ Mick continued his death threats, which involved descriptions of seeing me murdered or raped.

~ I had to hand school projects and essays personally to my teachers. If I didn't and just passed them forward, they would mysteriously disappear or show up damaged due to sabotage, which resulted in a lowered grade or a zero.

~ A big jock of a boy knocked me over when I was moving between classes. He didn't stop to see if I was okay. Nobody helped me up. They just laughed. The tumble I took resulted in a severely sprained wrist and I had to wear a splint for several weeks. I told my parents that I fell on the stairs.

~ A different year, my own clumsiness in gym class caused me to sprain my ankle. I needed crutches for a week to let that ankle heal. I had a class upstairs that year, and Sean tried to push me down the stairs while I was trying to maneuver myself downstairs. Luckily my heavy backpack made me fall straight down on my butt. My crutches went bouncing down the staircase. Someone saw it happen and brought me my crutches before Sean could grab and run off with them. That was the only time other students ever helped me.

~ During choir concerts, the girls on the risers behind me would take strands of my hair and pull. This caused me to make strange faces while I was trying to sing, and the choir teacher would give me grief about it the next day. When I started wearing my hair up and keeping it draped over my shoulder in front of me to discourage this, these girls poked my back and arms with their sharp bobby pins.

~ Once, someone unzipped my dress as we were standing up to take our places during a choir concert. I foiled that one because I was flexible enough to reach back and zip it myself.

~ During my senior year, the choir teacher utterly humiliated me in front of all my choir peers. The last concert of each school year was a Broadway concert. Students could try out for solos. I wanted to have a big finish before graduation and decided to audition with Memory from Cats. But the only vocal copy I had to rehearse with was the Barbara Streisand version, which has a guitar, and we only had a piano at the concert. I had the sheet music and a tape recorder, so I asked the choir teacher to please play it for me on the piano while I recorded. She smiled sweetly, saying, "sure! I'll be glad to!" Except every time we started, she would stop to talk to whoever came over to her. I never got the recording, and as a result my solo audition was the biggest disaster of my school life. There I stood, shaking in terror as the piano started to play. It sounded unfamiliar to me because it wasn't a guitar. I couldn't find my starting note or the right tempo. I heard faint snickers and stared into all the jeering eyes gazing at me. The teacher had a smirk creeping across her face. She stopped me in the middle and told me to go sit down in a really unsympathetic tone. The whole room burst into giggles and laughter. No one was allowed to leave until the auditions were finished. I had to sit there wishing I was dead for an hour and a half. I sobbed all the way home. The next day, girls came up to me and mockingly sang the song in my ear. They did it all off key and shaky like my audition was. They said I have the worst voice in the class and I should kill myself.

That experience resulted in crippling stage fright that I have yet to overcome, and for many years I believed I was a terrible singer. My opinion of my own voice improved a lot over the years, but I hated to sing after that mishap. I almost didn't go to my last Broadway concert, but I needed to show up to get a decent grade. The girls back stage spent the entire concert talking about my failed audition and how much the choir teacher hated me. I thought they were making it up, but it did turn out that this teacher really hated me.

The reason this teacher didn't like me? I wasn't a rich kid and I couldn't donate to the choir funds. The rich kids who could throw money at her were her little pets, and THEY got all the special descants and solos in everything. I learned this after a friend of mine who had a GREAT audition didn't even get picked. Her audition was one of the best of the bunch.

~ The senior class trip involved a long bus ride to Six Flags Magic Mountain. Two boys I'll call Pedro and Miguel(friends of Sean) tried to burn my arm with cigarettes. I prevented it by grabbing the cigarettes out of their hands and throwing them on the ground. Pedro threatened to set my hair on fire with his lighter, and if he was behind me in line for a ride he would click his lighter. I always thought he'd lit it, so I turned around every time. This started making people not even from my school start laughing at me. I found a chaperone, made up an excuse that I got separated from my friends and walked around with her for the rest of the trip. On the bus leaving Six Flags, someone put bird feces in my hair.

~ At my graduation ceremony, people made fun of the chunky white shoes I wore. I had the last laugh. The ceremony took place on wet grass, and all the girls wearing spiked heels were tripping, while those who wore chunky shoes, like me, didn't stumble once.

~ Rita threw a Styrofoam cup of coffee at me at the Grad Night party, but it fell short and hit the ground next to me. I saw the steam rising. It was scalding hot and would have severely burned me. I reacted by running away and hiding in the bounce house outside the gym.

~ Later that same night, Mick claimed he wanted to call a truce and handed me a soda cup. It didn't smell like Pepsi, so I refused to drink it. I caught the same smell again years later and remembered the incident. It turns out Mick tried to give me soda spiked with vodka. I'm glad I didn't trust him, and I try not to think about what he might have done if he succeeded in getting me drunk.

~ There was a huge sheet of paper called a wall of memories where people were permitted to draw and write. Someone used a red marker to write "I hope Cyndi kills herself!" and "Cyndi needs to die!" and "Cyndi sucks c***s!" in huge letters all across the bottom.

~ My last moments at my high school consisted of Wendy coming up to me and saying, "Cyndi, you're a worthless piece of s*** and I hope your house burns down. I hope you kill yourself and nobody else has to stare at your retarded b**** face. Nobody loves you. Your parents think you're a disappointment. You're the reason abortions exist. I hate you. Have a sh***y life and f*** you." Real nice to hear as I'm leaving high school, right? I just smiled, stuck my middle finger up and told her to sit and spin. Then I walked away. Despite it all, I left with the last word. I know how immature my response was, but I was FREE from the constant bullying.

I wish I could say I walked away unscathed, but the culmination of it all left me with many mental and emotional scars.

The issues I still have:

~ Being alone around groups of teenagers makes me anxious.

~ I have low self esteem, no self confidence and feel inferior to everyone around me.

~ I attack myself verbally if I make mistakes in front of others. I figure I might as well acknowledge my own error before someone else does.

~ I don't take public embarrassment well.

~ Sometimes, I feel like everyone is judging everything I say and do.

~ Confrontations of any sort terrify me.

~ I have trouble outright trusting anyone, and I'm very guarded around new people.

~ I struggle to accept genuine compliments unless I know the person giving them.

~ I'm still struggling with the mentality that everything I do has to be so perfect that nobody will have anything negative to say about it. The moment somebody comes out of the woodwork and points out the flaws in something I worked hard on, I go from loving it to thinking it's terrible.

Bullying had a huge impact on my life. I let go and forgave it all only recently, but the memories still hurt.

I know how cruel bullying is and how awful it makes a person feel. Nobody should spend their lives worrying about everything the way I do. I know that bullying may never truly stop, but I hope my Affirmations For Bullying Victims message helps someone feel less alone.

I already had one person respond to tell me my words made them decide against suicide. These words can save lives. They apply to everyone, even the bullies who are being bullied. Maybe my message will make them see they don't have to bully others. A long shot, I know, but I have to try.

I needed to hear the Affirmations I wrote. They weren't there back then, but they are here now. I mean every word. You are all wonderful, special people, and I love you.

The Affirmations For Bullying Victims: [link]
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GreenDayGirl18 Featured By Owner Dec 4, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I read this and I could not stop crying. I felt so many emotions, such as anger, sorrow, and I cannot help but marvel at your strength to carry on whereas it breaks other people. All of what you experienced and what I experienced, I wouldn't even wish my worst enemy that. I still face subtle bullying in college today, but I'm at that point in my life when I can just be an adult about it and either smile or say something very sarcastic. I still have issues and triggers of what bullying left me, but I do all I can to not let it interfere with my everyday life. Now, I want to act like a crusader. Whenever I hear anyone say "that's so gay" "that's so retarded", I give them a piece of my mind and let them know it's not right.
The bullying left me a very angry, aggressive, and pessimistic girl for many years. But after meeting my best friend, who is gay, he tore down the wall I've built, brick by brick, to find that I'm not this big, bad, bitch I made myself to be. He found that under all the anger, the fists and explosive rage was a frightened little woman who wanted nothing more than companionship. Although I still need work on my aggressive behavior, I feel myself rising from the ashes and this new feeling of wanting to make the world a better place, so no one will have to face the things you and I faced. Because together, we are stronger. 
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Dec 7, 2013
It wasn't easy to let go of all that anger, let me tell ya. It happened by accident and I felt so good afterward that I realized it was weighing me down.

People can be so cruel, but there are still people like us who can make a difference. All it takes is being nice. :hug:
GreenDayGirl18 Featured By Owner Dec 8, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I agree. i cannot believe that people make being nice out to look like a chore. It's not, it is something so simple yet meaningful. And after listening to your cover of Iridescent, it really made me think about all the anger I've built up and i decided to talk to my therapist about my bullying past and work on letting it go. It's a long process, but I feel I'm getting somewhere. Like Temple Grandin once said, "Nature is cruel, but we don't have to be" because we are "different, not less". Heck, there is even some breaking news in the autism community that singer and The X-Factor contestant Susan Boyle revealed she has Aspergers and even other celebs are on the spectrum, like Sylvester Stallone!
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Dec 8, 2013
Steven Spielberg has Asperger's, too. So does Dan Akyroyd(sp?). They suspect Mozart might have been on the spectrum, too. When I look at his music and see how it's all patterns woven together, I believe he was. (He was also pretty uncouth and not very well behaved in public!)

I DO believe that a kid who is acting up should get called out, disorders or not, but BULLYING should never be allowed. It's one thing to tease somebody a little, since I see teasing as something both the teaser and the "tease-ee" find funny. It's bullying when the person being teased is hurt and doesn't think it's funny. (Aka I don't see celebrity roasts as mean, since everyone is having fun there. It'd be different if the person being roasted stopped laughing or ran out crying.)

Something my choir likes to do is we make fun of each other's singing faces or the way we move during songs. Some of us have some pretty funny faces and moves, and that's okay! :)
GreenDayGirl18 Featured By Owner Dec 9, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
I agree. I mean, just because you and I are against bullying, doesn't necessarily mean we cannot somewhat tease playfully with our friends. The other night, I kind of got into a beef with my mom pointing out how I constantly scold him for using the F-word (the other one, the derogatory term for someone who is gay) around me and the next minute playfully calling my little sis a monster. I told her that me and my sis we teasing and it's different than using the F-word. I was using "monster" as a term of endearment and playing around, whereas my bro was using the F-word to call his rival on his online games on Xbox. After what seemed like an hour of trying to prove my point, I saw why she got upset. I failed to specify which kind of name-calling is ok and which is not. And to learn to pick and chose my battles. My brother is always going to use that ugly word as much as I'm always going to joke around with my sister. Because of that, I now have a somewhat better judgement on what kind of teasing is ok and which kind isn't by the facial expressions or if the person being teased is saying stop in a serious tone of voice rather than laughing while saying it. Because of that new insight, I was able to step in and stand up for a child at a Burger King I was eating at while waiting for the next bus home. Since it was near a middle school, piles of kids would eat there after class and there was this one child who I always see there, sitting alone with either her nose in a book or writing in her journal, which looked leather bound, like what you would see from Barnes & Noble. I peeked over her shoulder a few times to see what she was doing and she drew flawless sketches of people and wrote short poems. One day, she was writing and looked very sad and this group of girls came in and started to circle her, calling her names, and as soon as the word "RETARD" and the words "you weren't supposed to exist", I jumped up and screamed at them, " YOU LEAVE HER THE FUCK ALONE! SHE DIDN'T DO ANYTHING TO YOU! ARE YOU ALL JUST SO PERFECT, SO MUCH BETTER THAT YOU GO AND FIND FAULT WITH HER??? WHAT THE HELL IS THE MATTER WITH YOU?!!! IT'S OBVIOUS YOU MOTHERS DIDN'T RAISE YOU RIGHT IF YOU THINK THIS WAS OK! HOW FUCKING DARE YOU!!! I WILL NOTIFY YOUR PRINCIPAL ABOUT THIS BECAUSE WHAT YOU'RE DOING IS NOT RIGHT!!! YOU ALL OUGHT TO BE ASHAMED!!!" I was so angry, I was sweating and shaking like never before. Everyone in the dining room looked at me with shock. The little girl was crying silently. The manager told me and the girls to leave the place for making so much noise. I was so angry on the way home, that when I finally got home I locked myself in my room for the rest of the day and cried in my pillow. I never made that phone call to the principal, although now I wish I did. I wonder how that little girl is doing now....
Sorry for the long story, I kinda got carried away... Sweat Emoticon 
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Dec 10, 2013
*hugs* But you made it stop for that girl. You did a good thing, and it was worth it. Sometimes we have to tell ourselves it's okay to get into trouble with authority figures if it means stopping someone else from getting a bunch of bullying and nasty shit from people. You don't have to throw punches, but if you cause enough of a disturbance to draw attention to what's happening, sometimes the bullies skulk off. (Or sometimes they use the audience to further the humiliation, but we never know until we try! To not try is to fail.)

:hug: That girl probably remembers the nice woman who told off the people who made her feel bad. Just like I still remember that one kid picking up my crutches for me in high school after someone tried to shove me down the stairs while I had a sprained ankle. She may not recall your exact face and probably doesn't know your name, but she remembers what you DID. ^_^V
GreenDayGirl18 Featured By Owner Dec 22, 2013  Hobbyist Writer
Sorry for not messaging for a while, I was tackling finals and the flu, but I'm here now! And I agree with what you said. I only hope that the girl is somewhere out there feeling better and hopefully having a better time in high school. She looked like she was in 8th grade when I last saw her. I just can't get her out of my mind, she was such a cutie pie.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Dec 22, 2013
Bless you for helping her. LOL Your life just calmed down, mine is going to go nuts till Christmas is over! See my latest journal entry from a few days ago. 
ObsidianEmpress Featured By Owner Nov 21, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
You have my eternal sympathies. Not to sound like an egomaniac, but I thought I was alone in my pain. But as it turns out we've had similar trails and tribulations. Only... I had, note the key word HAD a werewolf father that made everything I endured nothing in comparison.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Nov 21, 2013
:hug: I'm glad you're away from it now. Healing takes time, though. Be patient with yourself. :heart:
ObsidianEmpress Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Thanks. I needed to hear that. :)
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Nov 26, 2013
ObsidianEmpress Featured By Owner Dec 5, 2013  Hobbyist General Artist
Miri464 Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2013
I understand how you feel about this and you are such a strong person to have made it through that. I understand because I have been bullied too and one of my friends recently committed suicide. I'm really happy that you made it through and I hope you're doing better. I'm really sorry for what happened to you since no one deserves one of those things happening to them. I wish you all the best.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Aug 21, 2013
:hug: I'm sorry to hear about your friend. It's awfully sad when someone is hurt so much they think dying is the only way out.

Bullying It sucks and it's not funny. Kids these days seem to seriously lack in empathy more than they used to. I didn't think I was strong at all until I looked back and realized I'm still here after all that. Sometimes the only way to get through pain is to take it a breath at a time and keep hoping the light will shine on your face again.

I like to say having faith in the horizon is being patient with the night because the sun will rise eventually. :)

I wish you the best too. :heart:
Prannke Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2013  Hobbyist Digital Artist
*pardon for language* But fuck, I know this feeling. Even though I am twenty and am studying to be a grade school teacher myself because of what happened to me. Growing up I was simply a weird kid, the type that people make jokes about in the media. I did it all, drew fake tattoos on my arms in art class, posted my favorite mummy pictures from documentaries in my lockers, short and wild hair, stumpy frame, a rather... peculiar taste in clothing, I was always dubbed "the freak" or the "weird chick."
Grade school I was quiet, liking books to people and few messed with me. I was simply a tomboy who got excited over things that grossed most girls my age out.
Middle school... An older boy cut off my long ponytail so I could "look like the dyke I was". Since I was not like most girls my age and my only female friend was one of the few girls who came out of the closet as a young age and it was still at the age group where being gay was a crime I was just a freak. I was not used to0 this and instead of acting out I just stayed silent behind my books. My things where vandalized and some of the tormentors thought it was funny to slip pictures of naked and beaten women in my locker.
Like you, the principal told me and my mother that "I was a normal target for bullying" and that she should work on helping my act more like my classmates. That went over as fucking well as expected. I ended up just living my life by avoiding people and having Zoloft and Valium as my only friends after being diagnosed with severe depression and a suicide attempt.
But Now that I am in my teaching programs I really want to help kids who are at risk to becoming victim. Sadly though, now that younger kids are on social media sites as teachers, we can not keep our students under control the way that generations before us have.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 21, 2013
*HUGE hug* Omg, I have extreme length hair and I can't fathom somebody chopping it off. I would break. My hair is part of my identity and NO, that was ASSAULT and charges could have been pressed. Sadly it was so long ago...

Congrats on working towards being a teacher. Be that teacher the bullied kids come to. Please print the Affirmations message and keep a stack in a drawer so you can pass them out to kids someday. That's why they exist, to help those who are dealing with bullies NOW--and in the future it will be another bullied kid's NOW.

I'm so sorry you had to deal with such cruel, nasty people. :icongrouphugplz:
LadyofGaerdon Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013  Professional Writer
You are a brave, strong soul. No one should have to go through what you went through and it must have taken so much strength to have to face it all again in order to write it down. But I'm glad you shared, because I have no doubt that you are right now helping so many people with your story. I think the worst part of your story is the behavior of the teachers. My mother is a teacher and has had many special ed students and so through her I've heard of how ignorant and insensitive teachers can sometimes be, and I know how wonderful it is when you find a great one. Bullying awareness is finally starting to catch on, but too many school administrators still don't take it seriously.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 8, 2013
Unfortunately, the school system needs to work out a way to stop cyberbullying too. The blocking system on facebook is a good start. I think cyberbullying instances need to require the two students involved to block each other, and anyone who makes a new account to continue harassing should face consequences.

The internet is SUCH a problem when it comes to bullying. I feel lucky I could go home and it would stop. If that was me today, I would probably be dealing with online harassment from the same kids who harassed me at school.

And I HAVE dealt with online harassment, but in that case it was my own fault and I finally atoned for it, and it stopped. That doesn't mean ALL online harassment is the victim's fault, but I was one of those cases where I didn't want to admit I was wrong. Once I did, things got better.

It is still NO excuse for online harassment--it doesn't matter whose fault it is. But every barrel of apples has that small collection of bad ones that ruins the's a shame.

I find it more disgusting that people will go to a youtube or facebook belonging to someone who committed suicide due to bullying and continue to post cruel things. Whenever I see that on youtube, I will comment and speak out against them. I'll tell them they're being cruel and what they're saying is wrong. It might mean I'll get attacked again in the future or have my channel spammed up, but it'll just prove my point. (And I'll exercise my use of the block feature!)

Thanks for reading. :)
pinballwitch Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013
Congrats on DLD! :nod:

Wow...thank you for sharing.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013
Thank you. It was worth it. :heart:
CassieCros13 Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013  Student Writer
I want to comment...but don't know what quite to say. This...a lot of my own life. I was officially diagnosed with autism spectrum disorder at four and couldn't even speak until I was six. I've always been shorter and more immature than my peers. I was bullied all throughout elementary and middle school with similar incidents, except instead of the salad, it was cartons of yogurt. I've been pushed down a flight of stairs, I got slammed into walls and lockers, they followed me online with threats. The autism effected my eating habits too, I would only eat Mcdonalds. I was one hundred and sixty pounds at ten years old. I'm still struggling with weight, but I've grown into it getting older. I've gotten death threats, if I didn't switch schools or would of had an amazing brother and family, I would of tried to kill myself. I knew I was worthless, I think I still am. My self esteem is getting better, and since finding this site I've discovered so much about myself, and about others. You're so amazing to go through hell for so many years. Those kids would grow up to be working at fast food places and gasoline stations...and you're changing lives. Remember that, dear. :huggle:

I'm sixteen now and am questioning a lot about myself, and am moving forward. I have yet to talk to anyone at school or at home about this, it can't be more true how much they push these things aside. It's sickening, really. But stories like yours can change that. Increase this awareness so others won't have to go through what you did. One in eighty eight have autism now, yet there's few who really know about it or take action by doing what you're doing.

Your story touched me so much...through all this hell comes a story, which impacts and changes lives. It's already impacted mine more than I can ever say. :heart:
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
:hug: I'm 32 and some of my scars still hurt, but I think I lived because I was meant to help people going through it right now, like you. Keep strong and read the Affirmations every single day if you have to. Your life is worth it no matter what ANYONE says.

Good luck and I hope things get better. :heart: :hug:
CassieCros13 Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013  Student Writer
They must...words hurt. Especially when they're repeated, and when everyone pushes it to the side and doesn't want to hear it. Since I moved things are looking up. No one really talks to me, but better to be ignored, invisible than being a target.

I've been in choirs my whole life, I'd love to take part in an adult church choir in college or has helped me cope through so much. :heart:
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
I prefer to be invisible too. I'd rather not be noticed at all than be noticed and mocked. I'd probably crumble if bullying happened to me again.

I looooove my church choir. It's one thing that truly makes me happy and makes my sensory issues go away for a short time. :)
CassieCros13 Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013  Student Writer
It's so horrifying hearing these stories on the media and such. Well, only certain stories make the media. Most of them, like yours, are hidden and ignored.

Choir was one of the greatest things that has ever happened to me. I've learned to overcome so many fears on that stage. I would barely ever speak to anyone, and I would sing by myself in front of people...and it felt so amazing. That sheer power when you're up there, singing full songs and such. I did it for some talent shows and can't be more glad I did. Funny how those bullies are suddenly nice to you when they find out you have a voice.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2013
:giggle: Too true. I'm still working on my stage fright, but I told the choir director who just came to us after the old one left about what happened to me, and he said he wants to help me heal from that. He's been really nice and understanding, which helps a LOT. It's amazing how different it feels to be in a supportive environment.
Laeneris Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013  Student Writer
Oh my god. I didn't even get halfway before bursting out in tears... it just kept getting worse and worse, I never thought I would hear of people being so cruel to others... I think the reactions of the teachers upset me the most. How in the world can it be that people stand there and literally see what happens, then still blame you? I just can't wrap my head around that...

I hope this does not seem offensive to you, but this reminded me how lucky I am that my bullies weren't absolute monsters like yours. Not that that makes it a lot easier, but still. I was afraid to go to school because I knew they'd make remarks about the way I looked (I have the same thing you do - I'm 19 now and people would guess that I was 13 or 14), or my voice, how stupid it was. As a result I barely spoke fearing that they'd laugh at me... that was just one of the more innocent things, but I don't want to fill your comment section with negative experiences like that. Sorry! :blush:

Anyway. I think you're a really brave person for uploading this, and I wish you all the best! I'm sure you will become even more of an inspiration to people than you already are now :heart: :huggle:

p.s. congrats on your DLD - that's how I got here!
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
:hug: Thank you for reading.

The scary thing is, what I went through almost seems like nothing compared to what happens now. Today, somebody beats up somebody else while their friend holds a camera, and they post it for the world to see. That compounds the humiliation a million-fold, in my opinion.

I just hope with my heart and soul that the kids who do it just don't realize how cruel they're being. I can't imagine people being so lacking in empathy that they know the harm they're doing and keep inflicting it. (Not EVERYONE is a sociopath, right? Let's hope that isn't on the rise like autism is!)

I forgave my bullies in my mind a long time ago. Funny how it happened, it was a song I covered called Iridescent, which was originally done by Linkin Park. [link]

Today, I hope the people who bullied me back then grew up to be better people than they were when I knew them.
Laeneris Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013  Student Writer
It's true. What a horrible thing that people can be at home and still not feel safe because personal things might be posted on the Internet... I hope that it's a matter of not knowing how much it hurts the other, although when it goes as far as what happened to you, I find it hard to believe that no one ever thought 'Hey, maybe this is bad'... :(

Wow, you have an amazing voice! I got goosebumps listening to it, especially the lyrics. The things you do to put an end to bullying, or at least lessen it, are very admirable. :tighthug: :heart:
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
:blush: That song means a lot to me, and I'm a fan of the Transformers movie, so it all works out nicely. ^^;

There are SOME bully kids who I swear have no soul. There was a news story a long time ago about a girl who killed herself, and girls who bullied her until she committed suicide went right up to her body in the casket and LAUGHED. That makes me sick, and I hope karma finds those girls later. Old age will get them! :shakefist:

At any rate, I just hope those girls were a rarity and those who still care realize what they're doing is harmful.

Once upon a time, bullying was just a mean kid who took your lunch money and made you go hungry. Today, a bully is somebody who makes you feel so horrible that you want to kill yourself.

I swear the world gets worse as time goes on. I just hope someday there is a real cosmic awakening and all the bullying just stops. It's a far-fetched hope, but one I always carry.
Laeneris Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2013  Student Writer
Did it happen to be Amanda Todd? Or someone else? I know that even our country heard of that, and we usually don't get notified of such things. Truly sick, whoever it may happen to. :(

I would hope so too. We can never know for sure until it happens, so until then we can hope. :hug:
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2013
The girl who got laughed at in her coffin wasn't Amanda Todd. I saw the story a year, perhaps two, before learning about Amanda Todd.

Still, people are just awful sometimes.

xlntwtch Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013   Writer
Congratulations on the DLD "Pick of the Day"! You wrote very well about a problem many have.
I'll confess I skimmed it just now, but will return soon and read it very carefully, because it's a fav. :+fav: Thank you.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
:hug: Thank you. Bullying is a hard thing to go through. I hope the people who do it just don't realize how cruel they're being. I can't imagine kids in school being so hateful and lacking in empathy as to wish death on somebody already in pain.

xlntwtch Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2013   Writer
Perhaps they're also in intolerable pain.
A tangential thought. It's no excuse.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 3, 2013
You're right. That's why I hope if my message reaches somebody who is bullied to deflect how they feel about being bullied, it will make them want to stop. It's worth taking the shot and having it fall on deaf ears rather than not trying at all and never knowing. :)
xlntwtch Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013   Writer
I read the piece thoroughly now and see what you mean.
My thought about bullies having their own issues is still true for some I've met in my life. It remains no excuse to torture others (or animals) but it must be put in a spotlight none can escape, so they'll understand what they do hurts so many others for so very long, and that they need psychological help themselves. You took this a long way. I'm sorry you had so many "issues" yourself and had to work through them to get anywhere at all. Bravo and kudos for your strengths and ways to get past bullying and where you are today.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013
I know at least a good number of bullies are probably bullied themselves or have a crappy home life. On the other hand, you have the people who do it on the internet just because it's funny to them. Sometimes they provoke the wrong people and THEY end up a laughingstock on the internet. I saw THAT happen once, and it was amazing how fast that guy shut up and stopped cyberstalking somebody I know. He spent ten years giving her crap.

It's the people who bully because they think they're funny that scare me the most. That was the type I had in school. Most of them were rich kids with designer clothes or a nice car, and I was the poor working class scum they kicked around. Funny how they chose me and not somebody their own size. I guess that counts as cowardly?

At any rate, I hope those people grew up to be better human beings than they were when I knew them. I won't go so far as to hope they regret it, but I hope they didn't go on to hurt others after high school. I would be glad to be the one who took the brunt of their crap so somebody else doesn't have to.

Thanks for reading. :heart:
xlntwtch Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013   Writer
Once again, you're welcome. I don't think outward appearances show everything about a person--not you in your "poor working class scum" appearance, nor every one of 'them' in their "designer clothes and a nice car." And, as I said before, neither group has an excuse to pick on the other. It doesn't make anything right, meaning bullying doesn't make things right. I grew up pre-Internet, so have no examples (as a youth) for online bullying. You're doing a good job countering it here, though. :heart:
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 4, 2013
If they weren't rich, they sure had somebody in their life that was to get them those kinds of clothes, jewelry, cars, etc and make everyone think they were rolling in money.

Nothing can make a person feel worse than knowing they're of a lower economical status--even if they only THINK that because their peers have "better" stuff.

I knew exactly who had money in choir because they were the ones the choir teacher favored and I overheard a LOT of things I won't ever repeat that related to money.

But as I said, maybe those kids grew up to be better people than they were as teenagers. Money can disappear in a snap these days. I'd still give one of them something to eat if I met them homeless on the street. :heart:
(1 Reply)
DailyLitDeviations Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
Your wonderful literary work has been chosen to be featured by =DailyLitDeviations and has been selected as our "Pick of the Day". It is featured in a news article here: [link] and on our main page.

Be sure to check out the other artists featured and show your support by :+fav:ing the News Article. Keep writing and keep creating.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
Oh my God, thank you so much! :hug:
kishimoto-kyoto Featured By Owner Dec 31, 2012  Student General Artist
That is terrifying to hear. I resent bullies with every fiber of my begin. I cannot sand some one being bullied.
It literally makes me sick to see people in trouble and no one helping.

I was bullied in middle school because I was heaver than I should of been. I suffer from Polycystic ovary disease/syndrome, and as a result I am heavy and grow more body hair, for me it's facial-hair. I never cared too much about my appearance till one of my "friends" pointed out that I have more of a beard and mustache than he does (this was when I was 12 in 6th grade). I was mortified. I laughed, but that was to cover up my embaressment. From that day on I was never the same. I started to shave, which I regret doing, in fear that I would be bullied more. the facial hair grew thicker and was more difficult to handle. While that was going on, I was sexually harassed by boys in my classes, and even some form higher grades (usually 8th graders), be cause I had a "nice butt". In 7th grade though things would get better. But they didn't. I became friends with a boy that I thought I could trust, but I was wrong. He asked me for my e-mail, and I gave it to him. later when I checked my e-mail, he sent me a message that had a lot of links. it the message it said " hey these are really cool movies, you should watch them". I clicked on one of the licks that imidiatly sent me to a pornography website. Everything loaded before I knew what it was and could close it. I was scarred at what I saw and never checked my e-mail again. some days That boy would show me pornography at school via his phone, he forced me to look at images that still haunt me today. I told on him and his phone was taken away, and was punished by his mother. but that didn't stop him. He still found ways to scar me even more. after that year, the bullying subsided till recently. when I was in 8th grade I made sure to go to what I thought was a safe school, which was an art school. I tried my best at the auditions and got in. I found people who had the same interests as myself. I was happy for a few years. till a few weeks ago. I was in my English class and a boy was having a conversation with his friends. I didn't think anything about it till I herd him say " I hate girls who have 5 o'clock shadows its so gross!" they laughed and one of his friends continued by saying "yeah! hahahaha! and I hate girls that don't shave their arms. so gross! how could they go out of the house like that?" and continued to laugh. they where sitting within two feet of me. and I had both of what they described. I got so mad. I stared yelling within my thoughts on how they don't know why I'm like that, they shouldn't say crap like that at all, and why do they even care?! It still bothers me, I cant describe how mad I felt when I heard that. :(

sorry for the long rant. ^^;
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
I consider myself lucky. What I got is nothing to what happens today. The internet can take bullying right into somebody's house, the one place that used to be safe from that kind of crap, ya know?

It's awful that bullying happens at all. It's worse when authority figures don't take enough action. I fully support parents teaching their kids some self defense or having them take martial arts. I FULLY support them telling the kid "If you get attacked, defend yourself. You might get in trouble for it at school, but you won't get in trouble for it at home." Nobody should be a punching bag because a teacher only saw the kid defending him/herself swinging.

It seems as if bullying is becoming worse than it was when I was growing up in the 90's. There wasn't youtube or camera phones to record and post bullying online for even more people to laugh at it.

If my message saves one life, it was worth it. And it did save one life so far. God made me sneeze out those pills because I think He knew I would someday use my words to help others. I'm grateful for what I have. If I can save people from being another Amanda Todd, I'll keep doing what I'm doing.

Nobody should have to die because of bullying. Ever.

Thanks again for reading. :heart:
kishimoto-kyoto Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013  Student General Artist
You're welcome.
And I agree with the idea of self defense classes.
I think a lot of women and children that are old enough should learn how to defend them self agents bullies and attackers.
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
Even boys need it too. Especially the smaller ones who might be targets because of their size.

No one should be punished for defending him/herself. It's just not right.

HylianSpy Featured By Owner Dec 29, 2012  Hobbyist General Artist
Oh my gosh, this is one of the saddest things I've ever heard... D': I so wish I could have been there for you... I'll never understand how kids can be so evil. It's amazing that you survived, you're a huge inspiration. This makes me glad I was home-schooled, especially being an Aspie. Anyways, I wish you much happiness and healing. *Lots of hugs*
C-y-n-d-i Featured By Owner Jan 2, 2013
:hug: Thank you for reading this.

I think God told me to stay because He had a plan, and it was to tell my story and help other people through similar pain. Words can hurt, but they can also heal. I know my message won't be a cure-all, but it's the difference between somebody holding your hand or being left alone to suffer in silence.
rogue-freighter Featured By Owner Dec 27, 2012
I was bullied as a little kid, and the school system did nothing but watch and ignore attacks on me and quickly punish me for any self defense. The weak uncaring cowards. It was nothing near as bad as what you describe.

If you are different, people don't understand, and if you can't fit in they think it's your fault and that you like to be a rebel to society, which they think is a crime and that they are obligated and free to do anything that they like to torment you in punishment for your failure to fit in, and it's an excuse for sadistic minds to use their imagination and act it out.
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