In August 2005, I moved from a small private school to a charter school. The new school wasn’t much bigger than my old one. The new school was a tight-knit community. Everyone knew each other, and I was the odd man out. At first, I made a few great friends, ones I still know and go to school with today. But for some reason, there were kids who made a point not to like me because I was the NEW KID.
From the very beginning, these kids would trip me as I was walking in the hallways, push me in the playground, and start fights with me every time they had the chance. I know they say violence is never the answer, but my instincts told me if I didn’t stand up for myself the bullies would never stop.
The bullies were made up of six kids who would attack as a pack. I tried my best to hold my ground, but there were just too many for me to hold my own. I never thought second graders could be so cruel and abusive. Every day was a struggle, and I did my best to weather it. But it continued. Finally, I told my parents I did not want to go to school anymore. My parents immediately knew there was something wrong. Being seven years old, I was a terrible liar and my parents saw right through the lies.
My parents told me to get dressed and took me to school. They met with the principal and explained to her what I was dealing with every day. The principle assured my parents that she would address the issue immediately. The principle came to my class and addressed everyone on bullying. All the kids voiced their opinion, and some of them even came forward and admitted that they were also the targets of bullying.
The discussion with the class was long, but there was no yelling or punishment for anyone. I thought to myself this was not going to go very well. But after an encouraging wink from the principal, I felt hopeful. For the next few days I felt a little nervous, not sure whether or not the discussion with the principle would work. And to my surprise, I never again had a problem with the so-called “bullies.” I still go to the same charter school, but I will never forget the bullying I encountered in the second grade.
The lesson here is that it is always best to get an adult or teacher to intervene instead of taking on the problem by yourself. That might sound strange, but it’s true. I tried to be tough, but in the end all I did was prolong the bullying. What really saved me was my parents bringing the problem to the attention of the principle and teachers and having them address the issue.
If you ever get into a similar situation, get help from the adults immediately. Trust me, you will not regret it.
Check out the Kid Reporter Special Report Stand Up to Bullying for more stories about kids and adults confronting bullying in their schools and lives!
Have you been the victim of bullying? Do you see it happening in your schools? How do you stand up to bullies? Let us know in the comments section below!
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