I look back to a difficult time in my life that I am NOT real fond of talking about, but if it can help just one child, teen, or adult in some way, shape, or form, maybe it is my duty to share.
See, I was a fat kid who also had a lot of emotional problems. I also was one of the very few kids in my neighborhood who went to a Catholic grade school who just so happened to force us to wear the UGLIEST uniforms known to man! AND I wore VERY thick glasses. I was teased, and made fun of often. I had some good friends, and I had a good family, and I basically had a pretty good childhood. But sometimes, a few ill spoken, ill-timed words to an already depressed and troubled child can scar them for life. I never really thought much of myself.
And in 1981, when I was 9 years old, my emotional rollercoaster hit a downward spiral. I lost a couple family members within weeks of each other, and I did not handle it well. I got very depressed and very scared about losing more. So I withdrew more. I wouldn’t go to school, I became more and more depressed, tried to commit suicide, and ended up in the only psychiatric ward in town, which did not have a seperate ward for children. It was scary and even worse, the kids at school found out. They were TOLD that I was going through some stress and to be nice to me. HA! That only made it WORSE!!! I was now not only made fun of for being fat, but also CRAZY! I contemplated suicide often, and even attempted it again. More doctors. More therapy. MORE BULLYING!!!
I started trying to diet and lose weight when I was 10 by taking my mom’s diet pills and starving myself for days at a time. Well….that had stellar results! NOT! I did have boyfriends in highschool, and I did have friends, but I remember being riduculed and referred to as “the big girl”, and even remember a specific comment when I tried to actually do something to help my confidence by trying out for the pom pom squad. Even though I was actually a pretty good dancer and had the routine down pretty good, one of the girls said, “Why would that uncoordinated cow even try out for the squad?” THAT hurt like a million knives going through me! So since it hurt like a cut, I started cutting and burning myself.
Results of bullying ruled my life and kept me down for a very LONG time. I am so happy to have found my way out from under the hold it had on me. I hope that by putting this out there, it helps someone to know that they are NOT alone, and you CAN stand up for yourself! Whether the bullying is happening now or happened years ago, find your voice. Be YOU! You ARE good enough just as you are! You may be weird, you may be unique, you may be what others call “different”. We should celebrate our differences, NOT use them to tear each other down.
I am now healthy, fit, and don’t stuff my feelings down to numb myself out with food anymore! And the thoughts of hurting myself have not reared their ugly head for a long time. Find support! Use your voice! Ask for help! Whatever you need to get you through and passed it if you are or have ever had to deal with being bullied!