General chatter - Were You Bullied as a Child ?

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04-10-2011, 08:07 PM
With so much talk about bullying lately...

I was bullied as a child about being overweight
and some of the name calling and taunts still bother me 40 years later... ouch !

Were you were bullied ?

winning the war
04-10-2011, 08:16 PM
I was, for many reasons. It doesn't bother me anymore. Honestly, it was so long ago, and both I and those people have changed (at least the ones who are still alive or not in jail). I find it a waste of energy dwelling on the past when today has so much to offer :o)

04-10-2011, 09:21 PM
I got my fair share of name calling and insults, but I never felt "victimized," in that I was outgoing and quick-witted enough to avoid the real bullies or turn the tables on them (in a battle of the wits, I usually won).

True bullies mostly attack people who won't fight back (either in words or actions). I was quick witted enough to either make fun of myself before anyone else had a chance to, or make a bigger joke of the bully.

When someone did try to bully me, they'd either learn to leave me alone because I could make them look stupid. Or they'd turn friendly.

The weirdest "friend" I made was in 6th grade. A kid named Kenny was known for being the biggest bully in 6th grade. When we had to line up for lunch or something, he started tugging on a fake ivory necklace I was wearing with beads and a pendant shaped like elephants. He asked if "those" were my relatives and I punched him in the eye. I didn't even think about it, it was a reaction more to him putting his hands on me, than the namecalling.

He was friendly to me the rest of middle school and even joked about my kicking his a** when he signed my "autograph hound" at 8th grade graduation.

Even as a kid, I knew that I was "lucky" to be smart and outgoing, because the worst victims are always the shy kids. They get ripped to shreds.

One of my younger sisters was terribly shy and she got a lot more grief in school than I ever did (and she was thin and pretty).

04-10-2011, 09:39 PM
I was called "Debela" by quite a few of the girls from grade 2-4 in the Serbian schools. Debela is the feminine word for "Fat".

Yeah... didn't help that I was shy and slow witted. Not that I think I'm stupid... I just do NOT have quick wit. So when people say something... it takes me several minutes to come up with a comeback... and by that time it just sounds stupid.

04-10-2011, 09:45 PM
Yes, for being skinny, ironically enough! I was naturally skinny (talking 80-90lbs max) and was teased for being scrawny, and for being pale.

04-10-2011, 09:50 PM
Oh... and oddly enough... this was back when I really wasn't all that heavy... I mean... I wasn't skinny... but I wasn't heavy either.

04-10-2011, 10:13 PM
I got "ching chonged" as I call it quite a bit. Kids would pull their eyes at me and call me "egg roll" and "won ton" and stuff and tell me to "go back to China." I can't count how many times ignorant kids asked me if I could see with my squinty eyes, though that's just being ignorant/stupid and not bullying.

There were two girls who bullied me for no real reason in middle school and high school. I really have no idea why they did it, but I always had more friends than enemies. I still fantasize about ruining their lives and when I was younger I fantasized about killing them. It's a good thing I'm lazy, because I was totally serious about it. I related more to the Columbine killers than the victims.

04-10-2011, 10:13 PM
I was bullied badly as a child, and it wasn't because of my weight or anything it was just my best friends turned against me for no reason and next thing I knew I was hated by pretty much everyone and had no friend. I honestly wouldn't change that for the world because once I hit high school I said never again and no one made fun of me after that because I became stronger and didn't deal with anyone's bull****.

04-10-2011, 10:54 PM
I wasn't bullied but I was called Panda by some mean boys

The funny thing is I would love to be at that weight right now.

04-10-2011, 11:27 PM
Quite a bit. I lived overseas and I had to deal with hearing old lady's saying "look at the little pig" and my schoolmates treating me like a freak because I'm half white. Stupidly, I thought that was bad then after moving back the the States I heard all sorts of taunts about my weight including "how could you miss her? she's such a huge target". I guess the moral of the story is that it doesn't matter what country you're from, people suck.

04-10-2011, 11:47 PM
I wasn't bullied but I was called Panda by some mean boys

The funny thing is I would love to be at that weight right now.

Clydegirl... Too funny you say that, it's exactly why I was thinking about this today...

04-11-2011, 12:44 AM
I was bullied for a ton of things. I had short hair, and huge boobs for my age. I was really smart and loved to read, and I was bullied. I didn't have the right clothes, apparently I was fat even though I was a very athletic 125 pound 5'6young lady. I remember those things, and I remember the tears I shed beause of them. But, had I not experienced those things, maybe I wouldn't be who I am today and I am not OK with that. Yeah, those people were mean, but they were also kids. I ended up letting people say what they would because I was and am very tender hearted. But, I would rather be sweet and have my feelings hurt than stoop to their level and know I didn't stand by my principals of kindness.

Pint Sized Terror
04-11-2011, 12:56 AM
I was mostly bullied for being poor. My mom was mentally ill, and wouldn't even do laundry, so yeah, lots of bullying.

After I moved out of her house and in with my grandparents, the bullying shifted to talking about my weight (even though I wasn't overweight, and was underweight at some points) and teasing about being a "spaz". (I have ADHD)

This one day a guy I liked told me I had cottage cheese thighs. To this day I don't have the self confidence to wear shorts in public without feeling bad. :(

04-11-2011, 01:39 AM
krampus oh man...I had blocked those memories. Kids are so cruel. I heard those things too along with a constant barrage of questions all following the template of "do they use *insert anything* in china?" It never got through their thick heads that Singapore isn't China, of course there are things like toilets and toothbrushes there, my vision isn't impaired, and dark brown hair isn't the same as black..the "ching chong" thing was incredibly offensive but teachers never stopped them.

04-11-2011, 02:17 AM
krampus the "ching chong" thing was incredibly offensive but teachers never stopped them.

This is what I never understood even as a kid - how the adults could look on and watch the horrific bullying, and any kid who interferred on the victim's behalf was likely to be punished.

My sisters are 14 and 16 years younger than I. But my brother is not quite 2 years younger. So we were in school together. He and I both were defenders of the bullied. Me with my big mouth, and my brother with his fists.

What I hated most was the teachers actually taking sides. Oh they never said anything directly, but you learned which kids the teachers hated, bercause they not only ignored the bullying they'd punish any kid who tried to intervene on the victim's behalf.

I don't remember the bullies nearly as much as the teachers who allowed and subtly encouraged bullying - the one's who would smile smugly when some kid was being torchered by the other kids. I don't remember as many teachers who would look the other way (except the P.E. teachers. I think "meanness" was a job requirement or something). But in gradeschool some teachers seemed to enjoy watching kids get bullied (especially some kids). Some teachers would even wait to break up a fight if the victim was a kid they didn't like. You could almost count how many punches and kicks the teacher would watch before breaking it up. And as often as not, they'd blame the victim for the fight no matter what the kids witnessing the fight said.

As a kid I had dark fantasies of those teachers being beaten by a mob of all the bullied kids and all the kids who had been punished (or given dirty looks) for trying to come to the rescue of a bully victim.

I still find it hard to fathom how a teacher could watch a seven year-old get bloodied and watch the kid get beaten and pretend not to see it for several kicks and punches, just because they "don't like" the kid getting beaten.

I wasn't shy with kids, but I was afraid of the mean teachers (I thought who would believe a kid over a teacher?). Some of us kids talked about going to the principle, but we never did, because we didn't think anyone would believe us or we thought we'd get beaten up by bullies (I think we half believed that the mean teachers were in league with the bullies, and told them who to pick on).

04-11-2011, 02:58 AM
I was bullied in elementary. The other girls always made me feel less because my parents weren't rich. They also made it seem like I was so much fatter than them. It doesn't bother me now because I look back at the pictures and I wasn't fat at all! Thank God I ended up moving and doing high school in Colorado.

04-11-2011, 04:14 AM
This is what I never understood even as a kid - how the adults could look on and watch the horrific bullying, and any kid who interferred on the victim's behalf was likely to be punished.
I used to get hit by this one boy for no reason. He would just smack me and hit me, and I was in the front row where the teacher saw everything that happened..
She never did a durn thing about him, but I got sick of the crap and started hitting him back. she ignored me hitting him too so I guess it balanced out, but I wish she could have moved me or something. it sucks when an adult that your supposed to trust won't stick up for you or take care of you. :(
It wasn't that she didn't like me either. My poor younger sis got an earfull of what a great student I was.

04-11-2011, 04:28 AM
I was never bullied as a child for my weight. Nor did I know of anyone who was. I was quite fit and loved playing badminton and dancing until I was about 14-when we had some big family issues. From that point on I gradually gained weight. I have been picked on by complete strangers for my weight though. Its normally just teenage lads trying to be clever. But I just think "I can do something about my weight, but you'll always be stuck with that face". It annoys me when people say something about my weight. Its just ignorance.

04-11-2011, 10:52 AM
I was a skinny kid and was bullied by a chubby kid at elementary school. I was in that school only for 6 months, so it never progressed more than staredowns and mean looks. However, my sister who was a chubby kid was bullied much worse in school, and I think it was mostly because she would not fight back. I remember this one time, some kids poured some kind of liquid candy on her long beautiful hair and there were also times when kids in the neighborhood refused to play with her saying it was because she is fat. Kids can be so cruel.

IMO, bullies & victims come in all sizes and shapes. It is probably just easier to pick on a fat kid because they probably have self-esteem issues to begin with.

04-11-2011, 11:32 AM
Well, I was horribly bullied in middle-school. I grew up with a hearing disability so it made me a bit vulnerable to being picked on. In elementary school, I was sexually harrassed because I was super ignorant about street terms for body parts (my Scandinavian parents taught us real body part language and taught the elbow, toe and breast were all equally important). Made me a sitting duck. Didn't help that our cultural values and faith were different (no one realized it but it made for undertones that I think made me stick out).

In middle-school, I had a very large bosom, loved to read, had to sit in the front to hear, and like my teachers (mostly). One teacher committed suicide and all the kids talked about how he blamed our grade because the kids were so mean.

Kids painted geek on my locker. The janitor was always having to clean it. The sad thing is that it was the janitor who had to tell me what a geek was. In 8th grade, I was beaten up between the concession stand and football field during a major high school game by about six girls. I had had enough from this little skinny mean girl who confronted me while I was carrying a tray of drinks for my friends. I shoved it all on her and they pounded me like there was no tomorrow. No one stopped the attack. No one helped me at all and it was in the complete open. My old elementary school best friend's mom came up afterwards. She said she saw the whole thing and thought I might want a ride home. I was sobbing in her van and she thought I just felt bad. I was sobbing because I couldn't believe no one came to me--especially her--when everyone had to have witnessed the attack.

After the attack, I didn't know why I never ever was bullied again. However, years later I found out that some girls from my softball team (also old elementary school buddies) witnessed the attack and later isolated each attacker and beat them up in my name. As a Quaker, I wouldn't want anyone hurt especially in my name. But, I'm a blue-collar neighborhood raised kid. I was so overwhelmed that these girls watched my back and made sure the attack did not go unpunished. It went a ways to make me feel that people out there do value me enough.

I currently work on violence prevention as part of my work. I teach anti-violence and write policies with community officials. I know bullying from so many points of view (both professionally and as a parent). I see the teachers struggle with it. I see parents of both bullies and victims who are blind to parts of it and so confused. I also see how our paid prevention consultants are pretty much sidelined to only a one-day prevention training then the schools post a huge banner about their school's "commitment". The administrators struggle with giving bullying even an hour in their professional development or to make appropriate policies.

I have been so impacted by bullying and violence (other incidents over the years) that I pulled my kids out of public school to a charter school in hopes that this school's focus of community leadership would be a place where these things wouldn't happen. However, my older son became super depressed in his new school because they bullied him because of the way he crossed his legs. His summer-camp friend (the only other kid he knew from before that he could connect with) had some of his long hair cut and kids put glue in his hair. The teachers in the classroom did nothing even though I am officially part of their administrator's anti-bullying taskforce.

There's so much more that has to happen in the schools and community. People think that we live in a tough world so it's better to toughen up the kids and learn how to fight back. Victims of bullies are usually people that have some kind of "anti-social" or nonpopular thing about them that makes it allowable to tease.

Really the issue is the culture of the group. Nowadays, teasing is practically the only way kids and adults communicate with each other. I see it at the office all the time. I see it at school pick up with kids to their friends and between kids and their families.

In different places, the whole group knows that teasing is not alright and any kids immediately nips it in the bud (my kids' karate school is a perfect example). If the classroom culture encouraged kids to say something like "hey, that was uncool to say" and a few pointers of how to support friendly exchanges, I know we'd begin to turn the tide of permissive teasing and abuse. My younger son is a super social kids (9 yrs) who is very successful at being popular. He says he always says something but doesn't see it much. I told him that bullying usually doesn't happen around the nice popular kids or teachers because everyone knows what will be said. Bullying happens around people who won't say anything or might join in on the "fun".

I'll always work on this and really hope we'll start to see a change. It's worth the effort.

04-11-2011, 01:54 PM
I was never bullied per se...but like others I've had several isolated instances over the course of my life where I've been called names or just simply discriminated against b/c of my weight. But I've found that people who act like that will find ANYTHING to pick on people about, whether it be weight, looks in general, doesn't matter. If someone is a bully they will find SOMETHING to make you feel bad about. We all have imperfections, and I've learned over the years to pity people like that. They have way more problems than I do, most of which are way harder to fix than just losing weight. It's more sad than anything else.

04-11-2011, 09:02 PM
Thank you for sharing your stories...

04-12-2011, 08:43 AM
I was tormented in school....There was one time in the 4th grade, and I remember it like it was yesterday because it haunts me to this day... I thought that the boy I had a crush on was talking to me. I didn't hear exactly what he said so I asked him. Obviously he wasn't talking to me because he looked at me and said "I wasn't talking to you you fat f'n pig..." Then in high school, another guy who was friends with some of my friends, used to sit with us at lunch. Every day, it never failed, he would be the first to sit at the table with me. And every day, he would look at my lunch, no matter what it was, and say "Do you really think you need that?" It got to the point that I forced myself to exercise until I cried and lived mostly on celery and water... I finally got to the point that I didn't care what people thought of me if it was based solely on my weight issues. I had friends, GOOD friends, and I didn't need the haters.

04-12-2011, 09:28 AM
Was I bullied as a child? Yup. Every. Single. Day. Without Fail. I was called fat, cow, whale. I can remember one incident where a kid looked at me and said, "Shamu, why aren't you at seaworld?" And, of course, all the kids laughed. They thought it was funny. I was a painfully shy girl and I was obese. I developed a disabling mental illness which made things worse for me. It got to the point where I stopped going to school. I couldn't take it anymore. I got into a charter school and graduated high school. I still to this day am terrified to get on a scale because I ALWAYS think I've gained weight. I ALWAYS think I'm fat and ugly. Kids are extremely cruel and I was a very easy target. :(

04-12-2011, 10:38 AM
I was teased in school, but not because of my weight. Everyone would call me "Kraft Macaroni and Cheese" because of my last name. I'm over it. I moved around way too much as a kid to really remember anything about certain schools, but high school was not as bad as everyone makes it out to be. Sure, I was overweight in high school, but no one really made any comments about my weight.

04-12-2011, 10:57 AM
I sure was. Mostly in junior high. And I do agree that the teachers did nothing to make it better. In fact, on more than one occasion they were laughing right along with the tormentors, which sticks out more than anything the kids ever said to me. Those were some very dark times and it breaks my heart knowing that kids have that feeling that it will never get better when it does. I hope for kids that are bullied today that there are adults in their lives who point that out.

It got much better in high school. I became much more of a participator and got involved in music and made a lot of friends. My prime tormentor in junior high was actually my prom date senior year! I went to a small school and run into a lot of people I went to school with and we've all seemed to have ended up in this magical place called "the middle". It's funny how life becomes an equalizer.

04-12-2011, 11:19 AM
Wow. Such awful stories and teachers. Thankfully, I was never bullied but had some unpleasant comments made from time to time. In athletics, I got in trouble and had to do wall jumps (which hurt with boobs FYI) and this girl sitting nearby made a comment about how I really needed to do more because I was fat.

Someone else made fun of me for playing in the orchestra. I was carrying one of those metal, foldable music stands and told him if he bothered me again I'd beat him with it. Easy enough to intimidate them when I was a head taller than most of my class by age 12.

In 7th grade, I was sitting in English and this guy behind me popped my bra so I turned around and punched him. My teacher asked me what possessed me to do that so I told her. She looked straight at the boy and said "You ever do that again and you'll be lucky if you only get punched."

I guess I didn't get bullied because I was fairly quick witted and so much taller than everyone. Though I was in the orchestra, band, read constantly, I had no qualms about defending myself, even physically, if necessary. I just feel so sad to hear about everything that goes on to other people. I couldn't imagine not intervening, or at least call the cops if there's a group beating someone up!