Monday, 5 December 2011

Enough. Enough is Enough

One of my Facebook friends shared this incredibly powerful video.

Watch it first, please.

Watching this I had tears streaming down my face. I am Jonah. Ok I am not gay, or a teenage boy, but it started when I was 6, my teachers called it teasing.

My nickname? "Spaz" Because I was sent to a special school because I couldn't catch a ball or run like the other kids. It was only for a day a week, but it was enough. I was singled out. I only went for a year. But the damage was done. I was marked.

It was more than name calling. It was physical, I was hit, I was punched. I was ostracised. My school bag was bombed with paint, my lunch was stolen more times than I care to remember. I was left out of games, out of school activities. 

I became bookish. Surely a "spaz" is stupid, so I set about learning, and trying to be the best I could be. That made it worse.

Kids introduced me to new kids as spaz. And you know what, in grade eight it got a whole lot worse.

Boys start being driven by hormones, the bullying took a sexual edge, I was completely ill equipped to deal with it. I retreated further into myself. I was scared.

By the time I got to the end of grade ten, I'd had enough. I was up to the back teeth of being scared, or being intimidated. I found my voice. I found my humour. I stood up to them. I won.

I have concluded that the main reasons I was bullied was because I was small, not just in stature but in personality. I didn't "need" them, I had my close friends, and I had my books, and my inner resources I didn't need those people in my life.

And looking back now, I am grateful for that experience, as it built my character and shaped me.

However, I am one of the lucky ones. I survived. I thrived. Bullying is a horrendous experience. Looking at Jonah I don't think its entirely about his sexual orientation. He is bright, he is resourceful, therefore he is a target.

Bullying now scares me more than ever. At least when I was a teenager I could go home, shut the door and I was in my sanctuary. Now its not like that, bullying can break through into our sanctuary via phones and the internet.

And it has to stop.

Enough is enough.

3 comments:

  1. Theramblingpages5 December 2011 at 17:34

    I am sat debating whether to watch this or not as my Little Man is struggling in school and gets taken out for 1:1 sessions and I dread the day someone teases him for it as he is very sensitive and wouldn't know how to deal with it. Once one starts, others tend to follow. It is a constant fear. He was ostrachised at his last school and the best thing we ever did was move 200 miles and give him a fresh start. The person telling the story in the text above should be so proud he was able to rise above the bullies, Stories like this make you realise just how strong some people are.

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  2. Theramblingpages5 December 2011 at 18:03

    OK, I just watched teh video. It has taken me more than a few minutes to compose myself. Jonah is one very, very brave young man and I would be incredibly proud to be his mum or even just know him. I hope he can find that inner strength and stamp on those bullies. The video is more than heartbreaking and I imagine it will stay with me for a long, long time x

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