An Easy Target

When I was in 5th grade, the boundaries in my school district changed due to a new elementary school. This put me going to the middle school that only one other friend would be at. Luckily, or so I thought, he was my best friend all through elementary and I knew I'd have someone.

When we started middle school, him and I had completely different schedules. We would still eat lunch together for the first couple months, but really in class I was alone. This made me an easy target. I was selected by the "popular" boys to be the object of ridicule. I was stupid, dumb, ugly, and worthless. I was never going to be liked or loved. My best friend wouldn't let me believe any of it orginally, then he began to hang out with a crowd that I was not a fan of. He began in 6th grade smoking pot and doing other things. By 7th grade, he was having sex on a regular basis. I didn't want to be around any of it, so I stopped being around him. I ended up friendless. I began to look in the mirror and see all the flaws that the boys would point out. My teeth were bucktooth. My hair was always in a ponytail because I hated it. My eyes were too big. My laugh was annoying. My voice nails on a chalkboard. Needless to say, I hated myself.

The catalyst came one day when one of the boys needed my help in our English class. He knew I was the only person who really knew what was going on. We were reading a Legend of Camelot and I was the only one who understood fantasy and the idea well enough because that was how I escaped. Well, he was accused of flirting with me. His response? "I'd never flirt with her. That would be social suicide." He needed to add, "She's the ugliest girl in the school and no one in their right mind would ever want her." It hurt. It hurt me really badly.

I went home that day and balled my eyes out. I took out a sewing blade and cut my upper arm, not even realizing what I was doing. It just felt good. I began throwing myself around. I wanted to look as ugly as I could before I did it. I was going to take my own life. I was only 13. I picked a date, I planned how. It was going to be gruesome. I didn't want to live anymore.

I went to church the Sunday before the day I was going to end my own life. My Sunday school teacher said she felt very strongly about having a lesson on something that wasn't necessarily normally spoken of at church. She began to give a lesson on Suicide and Depression. She, along with everyone, was unaware what was going on. They all saw me as that awkward, but nice girl who didn't take anything personally. They didn't know the darkness in my head. She said the words that stopped me from going through my plan. "Suicide is the most selfish act anyone can commit. Yes, it may seem like the end of the world. If you are considering it, pray. God will help you." I did just that. I went home and prayed.

The bullying persisted. But suicide was no longer an answer.

The very last day of 7th grade, I had had enough. The boys were picking on the fact I was overly excited about the new Harry Potter book coming out that summer. I looked the one who had said those horrible words in the eyes and said to him, "Just because I'm different than you, it does not give you the right to treat me like you do." I flashed him the scar on my arm. The next class period, this young man came up and asked to speak with me alone.

He apologized, nearly in tears. He didn't realize how much he was hurting me. He didn't realize the consequence of his actions. He promised me he would not let it happen again. He held up his word. When we got into high school, he became one of the biggest anti-bullying advocates at the school. We may have only spoken a few words to each other after middle school, but I will respect him forever.

He made sure I was not bullied for the rest of middle school. I ended up having a few incidents being bullied in high school. But this is my story.

Today, I'm better. I remember these things and I see how they have shaped me into the person I am now. I'm very open about my experiences and believe it or not would not change what happened to me for anything. I've become more accepting and compassionate because of them. I make sure to tell every young girl she is beautiful and God and I love her.

If you are struggling, message me. Chat. I'll listen to you. You are not alone in this world.
DragonsAreReal DragonsAreReal
18-21, F
Jan 16, 2013