In the middle of year 10 a group of kids in my tutor group
started bullying me. I was the geek of the class. I did my work and
didn’t join in the usual disruption that my class was fond of
causing. I was also and still am, a firm believer in civil rights,
so when the class would turn their attention to homosexuality, I
would speak against the homophobic drivel that some of the kids in
my class would exclaim. So the title “faggot” (offensive slang for
homosexual) would fall upon me and would remain for the rest of my
life at secondary school.
The bullies would insult me and put me down. If I had been a
more assertive character, then I doubt that I would have had a
problem with this abuse, but I was timid and I hated confrontation.
Most people would shrug off the abuse, but I took it in. This is
partly the reason that my teachers did not notice that I was being
bullied. They assumed that it was just the usual banter being
thrown across the class, as my class was always rowdy and fighting
among themselves, so they did not notice I was suffering.
One of the hardest things to do about bullying is telling the
teacher. I wanted to but I was holding myself back, denying the
fact that I was being bullied. It eventually came to light to the
teachers that I was being bullied when my best friend confronted
one of the main bullies in class and got into a fight. The bullies
were punished but they started again, every now and then insulting
me, until a quarter way through year 11 it was back to normal and
they were bullying me again. I went to the teachers this time and
again they were punished and again they returned to bullying me.
The second time I went to the teachers, the headmaster asked me to
talk to the main bully with him, I was reluctant, but he said it
would work in stopping his attacks on me. It didn’t.
The only teacher who stopped the bullying was my head of year.
She threatened the bullies with a letter which she said she would
send to every college in the city telling them not accept this
student because he was a bully. It worked. There is no defined way
of stopping bullying, but when the usual methods do not work, more
creative methods have to be used.