In grade school I was one of maybe 2 or 3 asian kids in a whole school of caucasians. I was picked on mercilessly by this one big girl and her friends who often referred to my racial features and made derogatory Chinese references (which made me upset because I was Japanese :). I wasn't the kind of kid to talk about these things with my parents. In fact, my father was a psychological bully to me at home in many ways; often telling me I looked funny or that I wouldn't be successful, etc. My mother, while supportive, was raised in Japan to bury emotions. So I never mentioned this bully to either parent. Maybe I even thought at the time that saying cruel things to others was just normal behavior.
This went on for a few years. Fortunately, I did have a couple of decent friends, and we'd go play off to the far side of the school field. Finally, one day when I was in sixth grade, the bully and her friends approached us for more 'fun', but for some reason, that day, I didn't want to take it any more. I don't remember that day clearly any more, but I do remember standing up to her, finally (maybe it was cause my friends had my back) and telling her off. I do remember this surprised look on her face, like she had awakened the sleeping tiger. I think I'd just had to grow up a little more to realize that her behavior wasn't normal and I didn't need to put up with it.
Eventually, much much later, I faced my bullying father as well. We still do not have a great relationship but he has since somewhat apologized for how he treated me.
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