- Posted October 12, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Bullying awareness: Your story
It's not Forever, even if it feels that way.
- Jareen, CNN iReport producer
I still walk in the halls and hear the whispers. I still hear the giggles . I also see the glares. This has been going on since I was in 2nd grade. The difference now, is I hold my head up high, and smile at the ones who laugh and glare.
Sometimes it hurts to hear things said about me, and judgments made on me based solely on my physical appearance. Fortunately through the years of torment, I’ve learned a lot. I’ve learned to overlook ignorant comments. I learned to see light in the dark. I learned how to help others and myself. I learned how to be strong.
If you’re reading this and you’re being bullied, having issues at home, feel alone, upset, hopeless, if you feel like you’re not good enough, please know that it does get better. It may take a little while, but it does get better. Suicide and self harm are not solutions or options. I got through my rough time, and you will too.
When I was in 2nd grade, I was diagnosed with a thyroid disorder and a couple of other medical problems. I was put on medication that caused my heart to race, so I couldn’t exercise a lot. I gained about 60 pounds that year. I grew up in a small town in New York. I had grown up with the same kids since pre school. I hung out with the same group since I was born basically. All our mothers were friends, so you know how it is. I always felt out of place with them, though. I was a child, but I still knew I didn’t fit in with them. I didn’t really have a choice of friends though, and they were all I knew. I grew up feeling normal being out of place. As time went on and we grew up more, little comments about my appearance started. Things progressively got worse for me. The boys banned me from the jungle gym and swings because they thought I would break it. The girls would laugh at me and make comments about the size of my jackets. I was constantly told I was fat, ugly, and weird by my “friends”. Those words stuck with me. I didn’t understand why they would say those things unless they were true, so I started to believe them myself.
When I was going into 6th grade, I moved to Connecticut. It seemed like an okay enough town. My first few weeks really stunk. No one really talked to me. I heard myself being referred as “that new fat girl”. I walked alone at recess. I was so upset, convinced I would be the weird girl again. As time went on, people grew to talk to me and made friends with me. I finally felt like I belonged somewhere, and I was happy.
In 8th grade, the torture started all over again. I was friends with people who were in the “popular” group, one of my close friends being one of the most popular people in our school. We had a falling out one night, and everything progressed from there. Days following the fight, I would walk in school and hear whispers and giggles and receive looks from the group I considered to be friends. A couple of them wouldn’t talk to me, and others would point and laugh at me.
That was only the beginning.
As the days went on, people started becoming meaner and meaner. Instead of whispering about me, they would talk about me like I wasn’t there. “ Oh my God, like, what is she wearing? I didn’t know they made clothes that big HAHAHA.” The words stung, but I tried my best to ignore it. Every day it kept getting worse. They tortured me everywhere I went. I wasn’t even safe at home. They would anonymously call my phone at least 5 times a week, sometimes more than 2 times a night. They called me a fat pathetic b****, told me I was worthless, I was ugly, my mom should have aborted me, I should just kill myself, no one likes me, they all want me gone. I felt hopeless. They could reach me everywhere I went. I couldn’t escape.
In school, peers started to try and physically bully me. They would shove me into lockers, trip me as I would walk by, and push me on the stairs. I tried my hardest to ignore it, but it never worked. I had been self harming for a while, but these experiences made me go over the edge. I would harm myself every day, not holding back at all.
One day I was walking out of the cafeteria and heard a guy from the back of the line yell at me, “ Ally, just go to the bathroom and throw it up already!” There would be days where people wouldn’t be allowed to talk to me, but they still managed to make my life hell. The only escape I had was the internet. Unfortunately, one day someone found my tumblr. I was heartbroken. They had found my only real place to be myself. I received hate messages all the time, and one morning I woke up to an inbox full of 270 hate messages, mostly telling me to kill myself. I decided I would. I was constantly told that no one would care and that everyone around me would be better off and happy if I was gone.
So I tried to kill myself.
Fortunately, I didn’t succeed. My mom caught me. I was sent to therapy and counseling, but while it helped, it wasn’t instant. I had to fight to not want to die. My family saved me. I slept on a mattress on my parents room, near their bed so they could hear me if I got up at night. My Mom wanted to be sure that I was safe with her. When I wasn’t at school, she was with me. She made sure the medications and sharp objects were put away. I sometimes still felt alone, hopeless, worthless, disgusting and pathetic. It didn't go away all at once.
But slowly, it did go away. 2 years later, I’m in 10th grade. I made it to High School. I survived.
I realized that suicide is a permanent solution to temporary problems. Self harm, in the end, doesn’t help. The reason I self harmed was because I thought: I couldn’t control the pain on the inside, but I can control it on the outside. I was confused and I felt relief when I harmed myself. I also didn’t know how to handle my emotions. I needed a release, but I didn’t know how to deal with it, so I took it out on myself instead of other people.
I made a decision that I was worthy, I was special, I was beautiful. I deserve to be happy, and I am going to be. I choose to believe in ME. Not what others see or think or say. I want to lose weight, sure. I have a few health problems to get under control. I’m also a little but scared to lose weight. It’s all I know. Its safe. I know I need to, so that I can get healthy. But even if I don’t lose a pound, I am beautiful. I am worthy. I am not a size or a number on a scale. I am so much more than that. I am going to believe in ME.
And I want to be there, to SHOUT TO EACH AND EVERY OTHER PERSON who is being told they are worthless, pathetic, losers that You are NOT. You are a worthy, wonderful gift to this earth and maybe they don’t see it, hell, maybe even YOU don’t see it, but you are! Love yourself. YOU deserve it. and if no one else can see it, too bad.
Find someone who does see who you are and how wonderful you are and believe them when they tell you. Find an ally. Be an ally to others. Share our strength. Share positive words and smiles. Believe with everything you are that everyone is beautiful and had worth.
*I write about my bullying and how I deal/dealt with it on my blog, www.losergurl.com***