I feel that most teens in America are labeled to be in either one of two categories: the bullied or the bully. The truth is that bullying is a cycle. It’s become a part of life for youth. Those who are bullies usually have been bullied at some point in their life and those they bully will in turn bully someone else. Bullying has such a big impact on youth because honestly no one understands it, no one understands the affect it has on a certain person. It affects everyone differently. How did it affect me? While growing up, I’ve been bullied constantly because I was a little different from everyone else. I was tall for my age, I didn’t really fit in with anyone because my personality didn’t appeal to everyone. People would see this as weird, because is everyone not different? Does everyone not have flaws? I remember how it felt to be bullied, I felt like less of a person. I began to tear myself apart because I felt my flaws meant there was something wrong with me. I was never brave enough to stand up for myself but I always wondered, Why do people do this? I just wanted reasoning or understanding. Do they do it because of jealousy? Is it because of hate? Maybe people do it because of their own insecurities? I’ll never forget the day I realized I had become the bully. I joined in because it was easier than being harassed myself. I would intentionally antagonize someone else to boost myself up. Why would I dare try to cause someone the pain I felt? I of all people knew exactly how it felt, it was torture. I’ve seen others get bullied and I just sat there and watched, Does that not make me a bully too? What if it was different though? What if instead of becoming the bully I just took a stand and said something as simple as “this isn’t cool”. I could’ve saved someone the pain I experienced once before. As I’ve grown, I realized that I can’t ever make this mistake again, We as people can’t do this to each other anymore. We have to stop the cycle, we have to take a stand.
June 6, 2012