Column: I’ve been bullied and the bully

‘I know the real reason why I bullied people, and it was simply just for revenge.’


Agustina Santo Bono

“I’m ashamed of it. I really am. But that’s why I’m the person who I am today.”

Bullying. Something you’re taught not to do, but you do it anyway. No matter how many suicides, school shootings, presentations we’re forced to learn and read about, we still bully others. Why do we think it’s a priority to make someone feel down about themselves? What does it do for us? Do we do it for attention? To stay relevant? What good does it give back? 

Unfortunately, I can answer all those questions. I know the real reason why I bullied people, and it was simply just for revenge. Being bullied doesn’t bring back such a great feeling. Personally, I didn’t question my worth of living, but I did question my flaws. Why did I have to grow up fat? Is being fat a bad or good thing? Is surgery expensive? Do I need parental permission for that? Isn’t it easy just to cut me up and stitch my skin back to the place where people would find me attractive? 

The first time I was bullied was in second grade. Pretty early, right? I know. I was in PE, and I was walking with a group of friends. We were told to do a light jog for two minutes so my friends and I started to jog. I was a little bit more than chubby in second grade, so of course, I was the one behind. I was minding my business until I noticed a piece of paper on the gym floor. I picked it up and opened it to see whose it was so I could return it to the owner. ‘You’re fat.’ I frowned. I quickly realized that note wasn’t a piece of paper that accidentally fell; it was meant for me. 

While I was deciding whether or not to turn it in to the coach, everybody else was running past me, bumping me. I walked over to the corner and my body faced the wall. I felt a tap on my shoulder and I quickly crumpled the piece of paper and turned around. I tried hiding the piece of paper to prevent the questions. He asked me why I wasn’t jogging. I told him I was just catching my breath until he snatched the piece of paper out of my hand. I looked down and felt a tear down my cheek. He asked the students who wrote it, but no one was going to admit to it. Because no one confessed, he punished us to stay standing for the rest of the class. No playtime. 

Throughout my elementary school years, I would get called names here and there, but I gained a little more confidence than before. Then middle school came along. New kids. New bullies. I was nervous. I had PE during third period. When I entered PE, I was lucky enough to get all the popular kids. Yay me. We were told to jog the long and walk the short. When I started jogging I heard some kids talking about how my sides jiggle. I’d had enough of bullying so I decided to bully people back. I would point out their insecurities. I’d tell them something about their teeth being messed up and how their forehead was more like a ten head. That’s when I became a bully and I completely hate myself for that.

I got in trouble multiple times and I thought it made me look cool. They told me to stop, but I didn’t. I wanted payback. They’d threatened to call my parents, but that only made me look cooler. I’d get lunch detention, which made me look even cooler. I loved it. I was big and bold until I got a message from one of my close friends. She explained to me she didn’t like the way I was making fun of people. Even though it was funny, it hurt her. I then realized throughout my three years in middle school, I had been bullied once. It wasn’t fair for me to bully some kids who didn’t do anything to me. I felt like an idiot. 

I went to the guidance counselor one day and confessed about the bullying I’ve been doing. The counselor gave me the whole “everyone makes mistakes” lecture, but I didn’t need that. I just needed some place to talk my mind. I needed someone to listen but not reply. She introduced me to journaling. I didn’t take it seriously. Sounds a little dramatic but journaling served as an outlet. Journaling didn’t only serve as a distraction, it served as a relaxant. 

Bullying people didn’t do anything but satisfy my feelings. I wanted revenge and got it. Satisfied and disappointed, I moved states and started a new life. No one knows I have been bullied and the bully. I’m ashamed of it. I really am. But that’s why I’m the person who I am today. Like Hannah Montana’s song “Nobody’s Perfect” said, “Everybody makes mistakes. Everybody has those days,” and I live by that.