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glimpses&flashes
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Hi all.

First of all, I guess I should tell my story.

Here in Australia we only have two schools, primary and secondary (highschool.) Ages 5 to 12, and then 13 to 17.

I came from a small primary school, when I was in the 6th year, there were only 6 people in that entire year. The school was less than 100 students most of the time, so everyone knew each other, I got on well with my class mates but the other kids I played will as a child were all younger than me by up to 2 or three years. So when I went to highschool, I had no friends of my own already from primary school. My highschool was up to 1,000 students so it was a shock to the senses for bookish me.

It's funny, I remember my primary school finding out who we'd been paired with in classes when we were to go to higschool. There were to be two classes who took our small group of 6. I went with my friend, and my cousin went with the other class. I was given the option to change then and there and not wanting to be a bother, I said it was fine. Thinking back I can recall a sense of forboding during that conversation then that I hadn't been aware of so young. But I wish I could go back and change that decision.

Within a week of being in a new larger school for the first time, my friend had dropped me like a stone for the more trendy girls. Within a month she had moved away, and I became the classes number one amusement. I was quiet, shy and had no interest in the same sorts of things that they did, make up and fashion seemed so far away for me, and in truth I've only began to be interested by such stuff in the last year or so and I'm now 23.

I was called a particularily humiliating name taken from a character of Harry Potter, a character who wasn't human, and how was below all the others in the story in terms of social standing and rank. I won't say the name because it triggers me more than anything. But I was into my third reading of Lord of the Rings at this stage so just on sheer principle, this name I was shackled with, and indeed, being assosiated with Harry Potter in any intimate form was near sacrelidge for me.

The entire year I was tormented, spitballs in my Hermione Granger-like hair, name calling, general nastyness and put-downery. I rememer feeling physically ill at the thougt of having to go to school and took so much time off, either through continuois bouts of the flu brought on by the stress, or my mother taking pity on me, that at the end of that year, I had actually attended only three of the four terms of that year in time spent. That's 10 weeks less than anyone else, but I was still the best in the class because I didn't have anyone to talk to! Funny that.

In all that time I never once cried at school EVER. I never gave in, I ignored it every single time but they knew I was affected by it. I never ran out of class in shame or anger and I never skipped class. I've never had suicidal thoughts either, so I've had it ALOT better than some here. However I remember being in class one day with the entire class heckling me, shouting from back row to front where I was with my back turned away from them. I remember the teacher (a substitute) sat there and did nothing. Not untill I asked her very politely to intervene. I've seen that woman once or twice around town since finishing school, and I always remember that moment with quite a lot of distain.

The next year I had an idea of what I liked and so was allowed to choose which classes I wanted to take, the few scant friends I had made from other classes were into the same things too and so after a year of highschool, I finally had friends in my class. I formed a deep friendship with a girl during this time who was always in my classes and I made small gains in my confidence througout the years but I've only just realised that that friendship I had could be quite rankist and judgemental with this one girl. I broke off the friendship bout 5 years ago when I realised she wasn't going to have the courage to stop using me to prop herself up.

Throughout my early higschool years Lord of the Rings was my saviour, first the books and then the movies. And then I became enamoured with the film industry and internet culture. I felt more myself there than I did in norman life which I felt was incredibly dull and not to be trusted.

So I finished highschool with dismal sucess and proceeded to spend the next three years unemployed, safely cucooned in what I knew protected me. I've always lived in the same house with my parents and it's very much became a safe retreat for me and the thought of having to leave it to make my mark on the world (which would involve moving to the city,) has always been a terrifying prospect.

After some time I finally managed to secure a fulltime job for just over a year. But my boss was a bully and an abusing narcissist. So when he fired his best employee simply on princible, I walked out to support her. Now, again, I'm unemployed! But am looking to start my own digital business somehow and unleash the bottomless potential brewing just under a crust I can't seem to shift. And so now it is time to deal with the mark bullying left on me.

It does something deeply to you. When I was young I spent my time in my head and was always very imaginative but I used to showcase that, but now I'm too shy to reveal how charismatic I know I actually am. I have a nagging sense of not being strong enough to sustain the battles of life. I don't have many friends, and all but one are passing and casual. I've never had a long term partner.

But I've never been drunk. I've never smoked. I've never thought of causing harm to myself or others. I have a history of mental illness on both sides of my family though I am undiagnosed (touch wood,) nor do I feel I've ever had any episodes. I've had it a lot easier than many people here. But I'm interested in connecting with other Adult Survivors and discussing this unifying experience between us, what does it change, what doesn't it change. Can WE change for the better?

Please, please, do comment if even one part of this struck a chime with you. It's time for ALL to discover just how subtle this phenomenen is, and what we can lear from it.

Thanks, Carol.

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It sounds like what happened to you was very difficult.

I was bullied throughout my time in the "education system" too. The anxiety it causes can be very subtle. I would recommend reading some books on cognitive behaviour. I believe one good thing to come from suffering is a possible closer relationship with ones thought processes.

Your story reminds me a teacher once called me "thick" because I was daydreaming. It can really make you feel worthless.

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I agree that the effects of bullying stay w you. When a child lives gripped by fear that imprint is permanent. I have not found a lot of solutions. Most people are completely ignorant of this unless it really happened to them.

Find what works for you and stick w that. For some people it is therapy/support, others its pursuing a vocation, hobby, etc

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  • 1 year later...
Guest ChinaDoll

Yup. Bullying stays. In my case, it influenced the career I chose for myself.

Nobody deserves to be bullied. The painful things I went through because of it, I use now as strength to fuel me-- turned my weaknesses into strength. I hope you can find a way to do this for you too.

I'm not promising that you will be "healed". In fact, I don't think anyone can ever "recover" because in a way these experiences have changed us forever. The scars are still there. However, we have the power to make choices. If you need the strength to help you make choices that will lead you out of the pit of despair your bullies put you into, then I hope we here can help you in that respect. But in the end, this is all you. The fact that you actually came here seeking help is a good sign though because it means you are willing to change.

Take care always!

ChinaDoll

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Guest ChinaDoll

Yup. Bullying stays. In my case, it influenced the career I chose for myself.

Nobody deserves to be bullied. The painful things I went through because of it, I use now as strength to fuel me-- turned my weaknesses into strength. I hope you can find a way to do this for you too.

I'm not promising that you will be "healed". In fact, I don't think anyone can ever "recover" because in a way these experiences have changed us forever. The scars are still there. However, we have the power to make choices. If you need the strength to help you make choices that will lead you out of the pit of despair your bullies put you into, then I hope we here can help you in that respect. But in the end, this is all you. The fact that you actually came here seeking help is a good sign though because it means you are willing to change.

Take care always!

ChinaDoll

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