- Posted October 22, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Bullying awareness: Your story
The Hand Dealt Me
- hhanks, CNN iReport producer
Two years ago my mother had just died from Alzheimer's and my teacher repeatedly asked me in front of the class "Do you have Alzheimer's?" At the beginning of every class he would greet me loudly by asking "Have you had your metamucil today?" Later on he'd ask "Have you taken your ginkgo biloba today?" and many other age related taunts (I'm 63). This went on for the entire semester. The school wouldn't hear my grievance. They said I had "mishandled the situation" by not taking this professor aside and asking him to please not say these things to me. A number of students in the class jumped on the bandwagon. Two guys sitting behind me googled an age progression website and walked me through it "And here she is, old and wrinkled, eeewww." A giant female student at least 40 years my junior, taking the gunfighter's stance known as "the draw", confronted me and said "You better get out of here. NOW." An insulting message was left on my computer desktop addressed "To the crazy old lady who sits here." I got phone calls at home where several people (including a student whose voice I recognized even though he adopted a heavy sing-song Mexican accent) would shout "F. . k you" into the phone. In another class two guys who sat next to me threatened my life. These two were rather frightening characters when you consider their interest in and knowledge of how to make nitroglycerin explosives and napalm. They would google disgusting websites and read aloud from them material such as how to hack off men's penises. When I objected to this particular website and their discussion as being inappropriate in a school setting, they sneered and mocked my use of the word "inappropriate". My language was frequently mocked by them and others. Together, they pounded 50 times on my desk, as I worked at my computer, making it and everything else on the desk jump each time. They were furious at the low grades they had received, saying "I bet SHE got an A." I did. In yet another class I was mocked constantly for acting as the teacher's gopher and mocked as I asked questions of the teacher and for my appearance. I fear it's noticeable I have only one breast remaining. I have a homemade prosthetic that keeps slipping. When I attempted to be friendly, smiling and saying good morning, they would sneer and turn their heads away. Six of them together shouted insults at me and demanded to know "How old are you anyway?" and "Why don't you act your age." The teacher did nothing throughout to stop them. And on this one occasion, as I'd had quite enough, I made some snappy retorts. They could dish it out but they couldn't take it. A female linebacker 40 years my junior, charged from across the room, knocking over chairs to get to me, screaming she was going to "knock 'my' head in". She was only stopped a couple feet from me. And when one of her group saw my hands trembling after this encounter, he taunted me with "Now you're scared, ha, ha, ha." The attacking student was led out of the room and no disciplinary action was taken against her.
I envisioned newspaper headlines "Uma Thurman's Auntie Bullied At School", but the National Enquirer wasn't interested.
Stop blaming the victim.
P.s. In this story, I am in Walnut, California.