A Letter to My First & Second Bully

This letter is about two kinds of bullies. The first kind is the bully who is going through something tough and they’re just getting their anger out on someone weaker than them. The second kind is the one who either does it for popularity or just gets a thrill out of making someone suffer. This is a letter to my first two bullies; the first was someone going through something, the second smiled whenever I cried.

Dear my first bully,

I shouldn’t really call you a bully. You’re a human being. I don’t actually remember how you made me upset because all I remember now is the aftermath. You probably don’t recall, as we’re practically strangers now, but after we found out that you were going through a divorce, we became friends. Your mum and my mum were friends for a while too. I think we once went to pottery together.

I’m glad you were my first bully, though, because you made me realise that not all bullies are monsters. You were angry and hurt and you took it out on me and that’s okay. Although I wasn’t used to it when you bullied me, you helped me to develop an ignorance for what was to come, though it still hurt every single time they bullied me. I know you were a sweet boy behind it. It’s the school’s fault, usually, because they make up stuff about anti-bullying policies that they never stick to.

I forgave you so soon after because I saw the real you. You were only young too; we both were. I’m sure that you learned that it was wrong and that it never happened again. In fact, I think I’m positive of that, because of how a bully became a friend. Though we went our separate ways years ago, I still remember you. I think I won’t forget you.

Dear my second bully,

Nice friends you have to help you insult me. It would be harder to do it alone, wouldn’t it? You always have to come in a gang of three, like the movies, but you’re the ringleader, also like the movies. You never picked on anyone else whilst we were in the same class; not even that boy who everyone else picked on — you were friends with him. It was specifically me. Specifically me. Why? Because I was a girl but I wasn’t one of the popular, pretty ones. I had my hair tied up and I didn’t wear mascara. I also didn’t have my ears pierced. Bare in mind that I was eight, yet everyone else deemed it normal for girls of eight to be coating themselves in stuff. I don’t get it. But I was still a girl: weaker, more vulnerable than a boy. You also knew that I didn’t have confidence, regardless of the fact I stuck my hand up several thousand times. I did that to try and make myself feel better, but it always made me feel worse. Your sneering didn’t help. It never did.

You were also the type of bully that I would never report; you made sure of that. You were subtle, but threatening, and you made me cry in the toilets. Our teachers hated me (because I cried all the time), so they just moaned about me being a cry baby in parent evenings. I think my parents were shocked, but it meant that you could continue doing what you were doing. I didn’t cry much until I came into your path. Yours and theirs; all of the bullies, but you were definitely the leader. I could always tell that. You did it for an ego boost, a popularity boost, security. You needed to feel like you had value because you never cared for class, so your grades weren’t the best; so you bullied me.

Still, it made you smile. It always made you smile, and that sickens me. Funny how sick rhymes with your name, isn’t it? You were another boy, just like my first bully, but you never became my friend. I will also never forget you, because if you hadn’t happened, maybe it never would have gotten so bad. Maybe I wouldn’t have had crippling anxiety for years to come; anxiety so bad that important grades suffered. I would tap my fingers through exams, thinking and thinking about how my life came to that point. And at one stage, I came back to you. And I was always disappointed with my results. Always disappointed. I think I could have done better; I certainly studied a lot. I think all of it was because I couldn’t focus. I just wanted to get out of that room and run out of that gate, all of the time. Maybe you were involved in some way, psychologically messing with me, even though I hadn’t been at your school for a few years.

Thank you for making my life a misery.

Thanks for reading this post. If you’re getting bullied, it’s tough, and sometimes no one will help you (at least, in my case) but you will always get online support. I am always here and so are so many other people. It’s a hard time but you can get through it. 

Lia

 

Mistakes

We all make mistakes in life, don’t we? I can’t stop thinking about a single mistake I made many years ago, and the fact that I wasn’t allowed to redeem myself.
I had some friends, nice friends nearby, for the first time in forever, but I also have pretty bad social anxiety so this time, so long ago, I was having one of my ‘social anxiety meltdowns’. I was saying that everyone hates me; I don’t do this often, but I do it sometimes when I feel like a friendship is getting too good to be true. I only ever do it once, usually, and then after that, I never do it again. I just need to have a meltdown, sometimes.
So these friends, who I met up with once a week, and sometimes did more with; I had one of these meltdowns, and my whole life got destroyed. I tried apologising to one of them the following day but he didn’t understand at all. He was saying “I can’t be friends with you if you’re gonna be like this” despite the fact I’d never done this before. So, I ruined my friendship with him, and then I couldn’t say anything to the others because I would likely get the same outcome, so I stopped going to the thing, and I just became more antisocial than ever. I didn’t go to college either, everything stopped.
It hasn’t restarted.
This incident triggered such a big nothingness for me and I don’t think I can ever get friends that can meet up regularly because I’ll ruin it again. I miss being their friend but two of them I don’t talk to anymore at all and one I have to message first to get a response, which I hate doing.

I feel so lonely but I can’t have friends because I’ll destroy the friendship. And who would want to be friends with me, anyway? Who would even understand me? I’m not worth understanding.

Becoming an Adult

The day we become an adult is not the day we turn eighteen, but the day we get our last exam result, and then think “well – now what?” Most of my friends are going to university (some going to extremely high-ranked ones) so they have a little bit of a layout for their life (not much, but at least enough for the next few years) and some even know where they intend to go with their life. They have it all planned out.

But not everybody does. Not everybody knows where their life is going to lead them.

One of the most stressful questions to hear, as someone who suffers from anxiety and depression, is “what are you going to do now?” They mean well but it makes me think about the future and where I’m going and where I’m not going and what’s happening and what’s not happening and — you get the picture. It’s terrifying.

I got good results, results I was happy with, but I happen to be friends with geniuses, which often makes me feel like less of a person too, even though they’re wonderful and I’m happy for them. I just happened to pick up smart friends. I guess I must be the dumb friend, to them, if you think about it. So I’m worried about my results too.

I worry about whether my life has a direction but I don’t want it to, yet I do, all at once. I want to study a degree but I don’t, all at once. I don’t want to be a drifter, I want to be a sailor! But I can’t be. I will never be a sailor, no matter how hard I try to control my ship; it will crash and I will drift on one piece of wood left.

I want to become something, but I don’t.

I’m never going to be what people expect me to be, or rather, what they want me to be. I’m not going to be what I want to be either. Because I will never be strong enough to sail. I just won’t be.

Lia

A-Levels: Mental Health

I’ve been struggling with the stress of a-levels for a long time now and then I realised: my mental health should come first. Having suffered with depression and anxiety for a long time, I was back into a cycle I couldn’t get out of when I started my second year. The constant change of creative writing teacher certainly didn’t help. Now, I might only be doing one a-level soon. I know, I know, only one!? It’s because I’ve been having a lot of anxiety attacks recently and we’ve been talking to the college about the stress.

You guys have to remember that, although good grades would be nice, you shouldn’t let them be harmful to your mental health.You matter and you will get through this. I believe in you! However stressful a-levels are, they will be done one day. Just remember that. Especially if you have had mental health problems in the past, I would speak to people about what the best course of action is for you. They can help you by breaking the work down or referring you to counselling or whatever you need. Just reach out if it’s all getting too much. People do care.

🙂

Lia

Again?!

Today, I found out that yet another teacher has quit us, though this time it was after only one lesson (what a record!). When I messaged Rose to tell her of it, she didn’t believe me because it was so ridiculous. She’d been ill so hadn’t come in, thus was very unconvinced. Unfortunately, I hadn’t been messing around.

I used to be ashamed of my autism, upon my diagnosis, wanting to hide it and never telling anyone about it but, then, when I realised that teachers who knew about my condition started treating me differently… I felt like I didn’t want to be different, but that I had to be. I wasn’t like everyone else and I had to accept that. So, now that I’ve accepted my diagnosis, I understand what aspects of it affect me. Change is a big one, and I’ve already done a post on it which you can find here. After struggling with so many teachers leaving, I was told that this one would stay. Nope.

It’s just really upsetting for me and I almost want to just drop out but I know that my parents would get a fine if I did, so I can’t. I have to put up with it. This isn’t something anyone should have to go through (especially when the college gets Ofsted outstanding!!!), but it is especially difficult for people with my condition and I am just not gonna do well this year at all.

I’ve been so sad today and they don’t seem to see how this affects my mental state as well as my education. It’s honestly ridiculous and I wish I could just have not done Creative Writing (my dream course) at all because, although I love writing, this course is so messed up that it’s just destroying me, to be honest. The constant change of teachers, the teachers who we do have not knowing anything, I just can’t deal with it. I wish I could but I wasn’t built like that. This just sucks.

How do you deal with difficult circumstances? Do you get out the other end?

Lia

After post P.S: Why do I need to approve me linking to my own posts?! xD

Anxiety and Trains

Train strikes are not good for people with anxiety. I was standing around for my train, which wasn’t direct and meant I had to change at a weird stop, and I was shaking as it kept getting delayed and I got confused.

I started walking back, really sad, when a familiar face appeared. She told me it was okay and made me follow her. Then, she found her friend and stood with him but I was too anxious of being late to get on the train, so I left again. I just couldn’t do it.

I was in tears to my mum, knowing I’d already missed so many days, but my anxiety feels like it’s destroying my life sometimes. It takes away everything from me: social interaction, education, independence. People say for me to just stop thinking about it but I can’t and the more I try not to think about it, the more I end up thinking about it.

This is really affecting my college work and my life in general and it just sucks. I wish I could get over it, but I can’t. It’s just always there, hanging on the wall, spiking my toes, clawing its way through my ears, my lungs.

I just want it gone but it never goes. Never.

Lia

Change and Autism

We all go through change — everyone, whether it’s moving house or just trying a new cereal, it’s all the same thing: change. Change can be minor or major but, in the end, it can change a lot of other things as well. For instance, I changed as a person when I transferred school in year nine. I made some really good friends there and that made me gain confidence. However, my confidence has dropped again since starting college.

Change, to most people, can be a daunting thing; you don’t know what to expect from it. For instance, if I had been allowed to vote, I would have voted in for the EU referendum, because of the change that leaving would entail. We left and I’m having to adjust to that. On the other hand, today we went to a new cafe I have not been in before (as opposed to the usual one we go to) and I was really sad and had a mini-meltdown because it wasn’t the normal one. Then my food came and it was so well-presented and nice and they’d really taken into consideration my veganism that I just couldn’t hate the cafe. I realised that it was actually quite nice. It just wasn’t what I was used to.

If you’re autistic, change is an even more terrifying thought, because we like routine and to have an interruption to that routine makes us intensely stressed. At college, I have always had the same teacher and the same class for English and that is nice for me because it is the same. I have however had five teachers in total so far for creative writing, as well as the classes merging at the beginning of the year (making a massive class, which I can’t stand) and it really feels like they don’t care about our happiness: just funding. The change has really impacted me in a negative way so much so that I haven’t been to college as much as I should be. I also haven’t been because I have to read a potentially-triggering book in English. So, basically, my attendance is bad.

I cried my first day of creative writing, at the break, (though I didn’t tell anyone and only one teacher noticed and she kept pestering me but I was just like “no I don’t need anyone k thanks”) because the change was so extreme. It doesn’t seem like they have taken into consideration what effect this could have on me and my class. I think everyone hates the change but it is just annoying for the rest of the class: for me, it’s terrifying.

Change is hard but sometimes you have to adapt to the change in environment, survival of the fittest and all that, though sometimes, if it’s negative change that could have been prevented, it feels like there is no one who understands the agony it causes me. If I get anxious over a change in cafes, just imagine me adapting to my. fifth. teacher. Not all change is negative though, remember that. Changing schools was one of the best things that happened to me because I met A New Chapter and another really cool person who doesn’t have a blog.

How do you feel about change?

Lia

Self-harm

I understand that this is a really sensitive subject, but I want this blog to be as honest as possible, and, to do that, I need to share my experiences.

I have self-harmed since the age of twelve and still do, though not as regularly as I used to. At first, it was just sharp rocks that were at my school underneath the trees; the sharpest I could find weren’t that sharp, either. But I liked them because I could hurt myself without marks being left behind. My pastoral carer at the school suspected me of self-harm and one time he made me lift my sleeves. However, because of the instrument I used, he couldn’t find much proof, so couldn’t help me. I didn’t want to be helped. I liked the pain.

But the rocks didn’t give me enough pain so I turned to nail scissors. Sharp, small, easy. They were amazing for giving me the satisfaction whilst leaving clean cuts, which had very minimal scarring. I have cats too, so any leftover marks could have just been the cat, or so I said. Eventually, I decided that nail scissors weren’t enough, so I turned to the sharpest knife I could find. And God, did it leave scars.

Once my parents found out, they removed everything visible from my room but they didn’t realise that you can use anything to self-harm. Anything. Your own finger-nails, an elastic band (I used to wrap them several times around my fingers until the circulation was cut off and they were really sore), really just anything. Sometimes I’d self-harm in the way of making myself vomit and I even told people but, because I was of normal weight, they let me go (and probably continue doing it). It didn’t matter that stuff was taken away from me; I didn’t care. I would find a way.

I tend to do it in an irrational moment of madness when my social fears get so bad that I feel I need pain to distract myself from them. Sometimes, I just want the world to end, because I can’t deal with my emotions, and when the world continues to thrive, I cut. Now, it is quite irregular, sometimes being every day, other times I won’t do it for a month. Really, my mood is like a see-saw. I can be so happy and then something happens that makes my emotions go anti-clockwise and I’m sad. It’s a kind of sadness where you want to die but you don’t want to do it to yourself because then your family will be asking all kinds of questions; it’s the kind where you just wish someone would do it for you. The happiness I feel, though, is because of my loving family and pets and, occasionally, friends, though I don’t have many. The sadness I feel is because of everything else. It all adds up. One small thing at a time then another thing and a bigger thing and a massive thing and I’m self-harming.

At the moment, I’m undergoing a lot of stress on my autism at college, because people with autism can sometimes struggle with change and I’ve had so much change recently. FYI: I have had five lecturers for my creative writing course in the just-over-a-year I’ve been there. The classes were also merged. It has been very hard for me. As well as this, I don’t find anyone who I particularly bond with at college; no one who understands me. My main friends aren’t at my college and they’re amazing, but I can’t see them very often.
When I was twelve, something bad happened to me, which I won’t go into detail about, but basically we’re also studying this book in English, and I really don’t want to study it because I’ve heard what the content is from someone who’s already read it and it could be triggering to me.

Basically, I’m trying my hardest to stay clean, but there are little events at the moment that are trying to push me to do it. I’ve emailed my lecturer but she just said “read through it” — and that’s exactly what I don’t want to do, in case I get triggered.

Unfortunately, I feel deeply misunderstood in a lot of areas of my life, and I feel like soon another moment of irrational thinking could turn into some more scars. I hope not but I feel like this desire to inflict pain on myself to distract from how I feel will always be here. It’s been here for five years; it’s not going away soon.

I hope you understand this post and I’m sorry if you’ve had experiences with self-harm. Just to let you know, I’m here for you.

Lia

Anxiety

Should I wear make-up? If I don’t, they’ll think I’m ugly. If I do, they’ll think I’m fake. 

How should I do my hair? As normal would be seen as boring but then maybe they won’t like the new one. 

Clothing! I always wear the same — but new stuff might be cool, but they might see me as weird.

What train should I get? I don’t want to get same train as them, ’cause they’ll think I’m following them, but then if I don’t, I’ll be late. 

Should I go into class? I mean, everyone probably hates me… but I have to learn.

There’s no chairs! Should I get a chair from another classroom, which would be awkward, or just stand here?

Should I answer this question? Should I? No, they’ll hate me! But then I could finally say something and be not invisible…

Should I talk to people? They’ll hate me but they’ll think I’m weird if I don’t…

Should I get this train or wait an hour, just so I can avoid so-and-so?

Should I do this, do that… What if — No I can’t ask that teacher a question! They’ll hate me! 

Should I message them? They’ll hate me if I do, but I need to speak to them… 

This is just a glimpse into what I think daily. My anxiety has sky-rocketed since I started college again. I can’t help my thoughts, however irrational they are — they just come at me and it’s such a suffocating feeling, having anxiety. It’s like you constantly live with someone else right besides you that’s telling you to do the opposite of what you want to do and so you can’t decide whether to go with you or with them. I get confused a lot and sometimes this anxiety just makes me hate my life. It is the dictator of my life and my decisions. It’s made me into a coward.

Lia

 

 

I try

I try to be a nice person. I try. It isn’t enough though because people still think I’m terrible. I was trying to do a nice thing by commenting on this girl I know’s blog regularly, making her know someone was reading it, and giving her nice comments. I was just trying to be nice. I did it anonymously though, so she didn’t know who had said the nice things. She replied to me at the time, thanking me and whatnot.

I checked her blog again today only to find she’d deleted all my comments. Every single one. Every single nice comment I’d made. I’m just done.

I’m obviously not a nice person. I try to be but I probably won’t ever be. I’m just nothing, I guess. Just nothing.