I was bullied from grades six, seven and eight. I was a small boy for my age and an easy target. When I went to high school I decided I would not be a victim any longer and I would stand up for myself even if it meant me fighting off more then one attacker at a time.
When I was in grade nine, five bullies in grades 12 and 13 cornered me in the equipment room of our high school gym. I was terrified. I picked up an aluminium baseball bat and told the leader of the group that I am swing for his head if he comes any closer to me. He said if I hit him the others would take the bat from me and beat me to death with it.
He walked forward and I swung at his head. I missed it by half an inch. He fell back into his gang and was stunned that I actually was willing to hit him.
l was screaming at the top of my lungs that I would kill him, that I would kill ALL of them! At this point he and his gang were scared. They knew I was serious and they slowly backed out of the room. I stayed in there for ten minutes and then went to the change room to get my clothes.
I broke down crying and puked my guts out all over the change room. The news of this incident spread through my school with bits of fact and fiction being added, but nobody picked on me after that day.
My reaction was not based on anger. I had no desire to hurt anybody and I can get angry and control my temper...but, it was the FEAR I felt that led me to almost seriously harming another human being. It has always left a scar in me to know that within me is the potential to be that horrifically violent.
I am NOT proud of this incident. I wish I could have found a way to show these kids what they were doing was wrong without putting their lives in danger.
This happened over 30 years ago and while time and reflection can dilute the feelings of being bullied, I feel the actions I took out of fear will haunt me forever.
Bullying has to STOP! It does not effect a part of your life... it infects your entire life.
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