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A Little Different

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There has been a boy in my class for years, almost my entire education. I met him in kindergarten. He is different than the other boys. He goes to the “special” classes. He wears cartoon character shirts. He wears sweat pants and ‘dorky’ sneakers. He does not walk through the halls, but runs. He asks the questions that cause everyone to sink into their seats. He never seems to understand in library class, writing about current events does not mean writing about a shark attack from five years ago.

Being different, is not a good thing. I’m sure you all know that. And this boy, he is the definition of different. To be honest, he is annoying at times, and he is embarrassing at other times. And yet, I don’t think being different means we should mock. Being different should not mean you are condemned. So, when he tells me hello, or when he forgets a name, or when he asks me a question, I smile, and I answer.

I have seen classmates mock him over the years. They mock him right in front of him. They mutter about him under their breaths. They say obnoxious comments, that everyone else knows is cruel, except for the boy. If he says something wrong, they burst into laughter. And, sometimes, he laughs to, because he doesn’t realize he is the joke.

What seems sad to me, is he doesn’t know he is being bullied a lot of the times. And yet they mock on. But, even when he does realize, and even when he gives his outraged, “Hey!” they don’t apologize, and they don’t stop.

This boy, he, may not be smart, athletic, handsome, or “normal”. But, he is one thing the rest of them are not. He is kind. He asks me how I am. He says hello. And he cares. And he is kind.

What type of people are we that we mock someone because they are a little slower, a little different?

I wish I could say that I have really stood up for him over the years. But I have not. I have glared at his mockers. I have told them to "knock it off." But, no, I have not stopped them, and truly, I don’t think I can. For, if they truly want to stop, if they ever have that epiphany, they will stop. And they will mature.

At times, this boy seems immature. But those who mock him for his immaturity are no better.





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lovehate29 This work has been published in the Teen Ink monthly print magazine. said...
Jun. 9, 2009 at 6:42 pm
This sounds like your poem "Misunderstood". Now don't get me wrong, I like this one too. It's like a longer version or like a version that breaks it down. It seems like you know a lot about this boy and that is very sweet. Great job!
 
wrtrgirl4ever said...
Nov. 7, 2008 at 4:10 am
Jerry Spinelli's "Loser" totally touched your topic. It's cruel that we all get discriminated for the things we can't help. That is true in this boy's case. You were great with describing your opinions on how this boy is treated. AWESOME!!!
 
brenthatesme said...
Nov. 6, 2008 at 1:13 am
i know how you feel there are kids like that at every school and although i feel bad for them and disapointed in the kids that make fun of him im almos as bad as them for not sticking up for him thanks for putting it into words you did a good job
 
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