Bullying is a pervasive problem that knows no social, racial, or economic boundaries and takes many forms.
It is just as likely to occur on the job as on the playground.
Today, we invite you to share your story: let’s kick bullying to the curb.
The author of this post is my oldest daughter, Gracie. She's almost 12, and in sixth grade.
In fifth grade, my "friend" Heather made a quiz and sent it in an email to me and all of our group of friends. One of the questions was "who do you think is the meanest girl?" I chose a girl named Mackenzie, but Heather's "correct answer" for the quiz was me.
I ran upstairs crying and told my dad. He said to ignore what Heather had done. When I got back to school the next week, Heather had been moved to my table, and her desk was right next to mine. During the time she was next to me, I was thinking of what I could tell her to make her stop thinking I was mean.
The next day I talked to her during recess. I asked my best friend Nina to come with me to talk to her because I was scared. I asked her straightforward: "Why do you think I'm mean?" She told me three things, which weren't true. I kept saying "I swear I didn't do it," but she said I was lying. We talked for more than 25 minutes at recess, but it didn't do any good. I ran away crying to the bench all the way over by the far gate. My friend Nina asked Heather if she felt bad for making me cry, and Heather told her that she felt nothing.
This year, I'm in sixth grade. A few weeks ago on a Thursday, I got an email from Heather that said that I was trading old friends in for new ones in middle school, that I talk about my problems all the time and I never ask about hers, and that she thought I was suicidal and trying to get attention from our group of friends. Then she cussed at me, and sent a quiz to all of our friends saying why I'm a bad friend and telling them why they shouldn't be friends with me.
We had sat together at lunch on Wednesday and talked, and then the next day I get this email where she acts totally different. I sent the emails to my mom and dad, and they were mad at Heather. I thought my mom was going to go all "crazy kung-fu mama" on her mom! So my dad called Heather's mom, and she asked me to send her Heather's emails.
Now Heather is grounded from the computer and her mom told her not to talk to me, so we are officially not friends anymore. It makes me sad and depressed to get bullied. Sometimes it makes me feel insecure about myself, especially when people cuss at me.
I hope I never have to go through this with Heather again. I'm glad I have friends like Nina who stand up for me and help me. I'm glad my mom and dad take bullying seriously, because I know they were bullied too. People can be bullied both emotionally and physically. I've been bullied with words to my face and cyberbullied. By writing this, I hope I can help raise more awareness on how much bullying hurts.