June 9th was our last day of school, and we were dismissed at 11:45. I took pictures of all my classmates, had them sign my yearbook and school t-shirt, and tried to hug most of them.
I knew today would be especially sad for me because we were moving to Illinois, and I might not see them again.
I don’t like to be bitter, but I was kind of glad that I wouldn’t see one student again, who had treated me badly during 3 of my 4 years at Salem Hills. They continually made faces at me, teased me, made fun of my interests and pointed out every flaw I had. As I still respect the person, I will keep them anonymous and under the fake name of Rom.
I started seeing the school social worker in the middle of 5th grade, and met up around twice a week to talk to them about what was happening. The person in question also met with the social worker regularly to see how things were going.
One particular day, Rom had been especially mean–criticizing a song I wrote and making fun of the lyrics–and I sat down with the social worker and Rom to discuss the matter. The social worker asked me to retell the story, and I did. Rom immediately started yelling at me, called the story a lie, and said that he had been joking.
I, of course, knew that was not true, but the social worker did not. Seeing as the group meeting did not go well, I requested that I just meet with the social worker alone.
Then we applied what I call The Distance Law. Rom was to remain far away from me as possible, and my very understanding teacher, moved our desks far away from one another. She also made sure that we were far apart in every class (Music, Media Center and Phy Ed). This worked well… for about a month. Rom found a way to bully me by using The Distance Law. When I was playing with friends, Rom would come over and start playing. Then I–following the rules– was forced to leave the group.
This went on for 2 months or so until finally the social worker did something about it. They contacted my teacher, and then a split recess schedule was introduced. Every other week, I would pick 2 friends and go outside to recess instead of going to lunch with the rest of the class. Then when the class came out for recess my 2 friends and I would go eat lunch. One week I would do it, then Rom. Then me, Rom, me… and so on.
By this time, me, the social worker, Rom and the principal were meeting every Monday. During our conversations, Rom was being dishonest so I suggested we stop immediately, after the 3rd meeting.
Rom continued to not follow The Distance Law, so I was forced to be the good one and repeatedly leave my friends when he came (which was very often). Even with the principal involved, Rom continued. And so I continued school being silently bullied. And even on the last day it didn’t stop.
The social worker suggested I keep a tally of ‘Accident-Free Days’ when Rom wasn’t mean. I liked the idea so I started it on the 20th of May. The tally read 8 at the end of the school year.
They also suggested I keep a tally of how many times Rom was mean to me. I also started that on the 20th of May, and at the end of the day today, it read 97.
This is why I post about ani-bullying so much. Bullying can impact people in very negative ways, and it’s so important not to do it. I hope that none of any of you will have to go through something like this.