A letter writer thought that bullying was safely in the past… until some of her classmates started picking on her in college.
Hang on in there, says our elder. It will come to an end.
Hi, I’ve dealt with being bullied all my life to where there was a time I avoided school thinking it was going to solve the problem. Boy, that only made new problems. Now, I’m in college, and I thought that things like bullying would be left in the past until my Sociology class. I didn’t know until a month and a half ago I was being made fun of. I overheard a girl in the class say, “Oh, they always laugh and make fun of her!” I looked back on it, and I realized they always laughed at me whenever I answered a question out loud. They were making fun of my voice! I can’t help that I’m a girl with a deep voice. If I could, I’d trade it in a heartbeat for something more feminine. After that, I stopped actively participating in class to where professors ask if I’m all right. Another instance, I was passing out candy to the students, and a lady told me, “I don’t want to get fat like you!” The two people helping me were surprised too! It’s scary how comfortable a person can be with disrespecting someone. Why do these things follow me? I already have low self-esteem. I’m an all-around nice person, and I never do or say anything to anyone. I mind my business, yet I’m still singled out. My questions are: How do I deal with these kinds of situations? I’m tired of having to hold it all in just to go home and cry in my room. Also, how do I develop that don’t-care mentality? Thank you.
As a past victim of bullying, I can tell you that it will end. These people will either grow up or go away. But I know how it can wear you down from day to day, always avoiding certain people or certain situations. You have to find a way to concentrate on what’s important to you, do your best and hold your head up high.
You may find that counseling would be of help. You can see if your parents will help you to find and see a counselor. Or look into your college’s counseling center. Even one or two visits may help you. You need some reinforcement from an outside, objective source. Someone needs to remind you that you are not the person that they’re trying to make you believe you are.
In a few years, these cruel people won’t even remember the hell they put you through. You have to outlast them. Don’t let them change who you are. Some people who are insecure feel that they have to put others down in order to feel adequate themselves. Realize that fact when someone laughs at you or says something unkind. Try to feel sorry for them because they are lacking something themselves that they are trying to make up for. They may even be jealous of you.
Some people make fun of people who are different. Eventually, when you are a few years older, being different will be an asset. Other people are just trying to make up for things they lack in their own personality. When it’s something like your voice that they make fun of, that’s just a feature of who you are. In time, your voice will be considered mysterious and sexy like the actress Lauren Bacall.
This will pass. You have a wonderful life ahead of you and these people will not follow you into adulthood. Believe in yourself!
Letter #: 432516