A person’s childhood up to their teenage years is meant to be spent with happiness. However, some students become bullies, and sadly enough, they tend to focus on one victim. They horribly feel satisfaction in seeing their classmates feel tortured or afraid of their presence. It’s an alarming way of showing superiority toward others. They pick on another person to mask their inferiority complex.
For this reason, victims also build insecurities they’ll carry through the years. Even when it was already a long time ago, triggers still affect them. Every memory of pointing out their flaws or physical harassment will suddenly come back all at once. To make it more serious, bullying can be the root cause of unwell mental health.
Bullying should never be excused, whether in elementary, middle, or high school. Their crime has a long-lasting effect on their victims — no one has a say in when they should be forgiven. Only the victim can make a choice about if they should treat them like nothing ever happened. It’s much better to draw a line for inner peace, which is closure for others. The bully no longer has a place in their life, especially when the victim developed trauma from their interactions. Boundaries are important, which grandvizierofswag demonstrated during an encounter with his middle school classmates.
“I (22M) ran across some people I went to middle school with at a bar, and I was happy to see them. We were catching up for a bit and talking about our new jobs and our college experiences, when a guy who was extraordinarily cruel to me in middle school joined the group (I guess he was running late),” OP wrote. He was surprised when his former classmates were friendly with his bully when they weren’t friends before.
It was not an issue for him, but he had no plans of acting all chummy with a person that made his childhood a nightmare. “This guy gave me crippling insecurities about my body, my abilities, and my overall worth as a person for years, and I’ve only just started to get over them. In fact, a big reason why I transferred schools after the 8th grade was because of him,” he explained. As the others exchanged pleasantries, the bully dared to greet and shake OP’s hand, but he ignored his approach. He even said “no, thanks,” to show that he really is setting up a high wall between them.
It became awkward after that because of the tension in the air. OP decided to bid them farewell and left them all in the bar. But another shocking thing happened later that night; his former classmates tried to defend the former bully in a text. They sent a DM on social media to OP telling him he was childish and ruined the night for the others. “They responded with an excuse on his behalf about how he had a bad home life and was just acting out, and I didn’t bother responding because I think that’s completely dodging the blame that he deserves,” OP shared.
Seems like his former classmates never actually understood grandvizierofswag’s trauma. But Redditors in the comment section supported him and validated his response. Hapnhopeless commented, “Absolutely NTA. Shame on enablers. ‘You should ignore your trauma so that we don’t have to be aware it exists.’ – sincerely, the idiot who made excuses for the bully and contributes directly to this social problem.” At their age, being a bystander is inexcusable. Bullying is a serious matter regardless of their classmate’s backstory.
“To all his friends who are apologizing on his behalf – they are just enabling bad behavior. If anything, they should be telling the bully to apologize to you,” AlwaysandForeverRed pointed out. They should at least support OP’s actions because it shows he’s not allowing his perpetrator to escape. It’s not a simple children’s fight, it has cost his mental health so much. And if it wasn’t that deep, why would OP transfer schools? He did the right thing, especially for himself.
Bullies should be held accountable for causing trauma, even at a young age. They not only steal others’ happiness, but they also rob their victim’s chance to build confidence. If you’re a victim of bullying, you might want to join the discussion in the comment section. Let your story be heard, and you need to know that it was never your fault — the bully is always the problem.Whizzco