Thursday, 6 September 2012

In Out

Last year one of the boys who bullied me as a child killed himself.  I was not in touch with him but found out about his death when mutual friends posted about it on Facebook.  I didn't rejoice in any way; I found it strange and surreal to realize that someone I'd assumed was confident and comfortable with their place in life was, in fact, suffering seriously in some way.  It perhaps gave credence to the notion that those who bully are often the most unhappy themselves (although, there were an intervening 20 years between his being my classmate, and his death, so perhaps he wasn't unhappy as a child).

The people who bullied me would probably struggle to remember me or even recognize my name - this I assume, as I haven't spoken to them since - but I can remember the names and faces of every single one of them.  I was only 10 but consider that year to have altered the course of my life permanently.  It convinced me at a very young age that there was something not ok about me.

Still, for years I wondered why so few people wanted to be friends with me, why nobody sought me out to befriend me.  I only realized later that it was because, despite how rich my inner life felt to me, I must have seemed blank from the outside.

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