Many people believe that bullying will stop once a student graduates from school. Children often believe that if they avoid school, they can avoid the pain and humiliation of being picked on and hurt, but it can continue - only the label changes from bullying to harassment.
As a child, I was picked on even though I changed schools. Only when I had a trusted teacher that I could talk to about the issues did the bullying stop; still, the internal damage of feeling less than my peers continued, even as an adult.
I made a career change to become a special education teacher in my 40s only to be bullied again – only this time it was by the school’s staff. Like the students who are bullied, I was told that I didn’t fit in, even though I had lived within twenty minutes of the community my entire life. The school psychologist took an immediate dislike to me and bullied or harassed me to a point that by spring of my first year of teaching, I became suicidal. I spent the next six months receiving therapy to come to grips with what had and was occurring in my life. Not surprisingly, I was fired which further reinforced my feelings of low self worth.
Five years later, I am a successful special education teacher in a neighboring school system, and I am highly aware of harassment and/or bullying. It has become a personal mission to protect students until they can stand back up and move forward with their lives free from ridicule. I encourage all individuals who have been bullied to get counseling in order to properly come to terms with it. I also encourage those who engage in bullying to get the help they need to live a life without the impulse to de-value another to feel okay. YOUR behaviors are not normal or okay.
Blessings to all, be free!
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