Bullying started early for me. I went into puberty at a very early age, I had breasts before the rest of the girls which also came with hormones and everything else. Having adult breasts at the age of 10 isn’t as good as it might sound to some people. Boys at that age are not ready for breasts and are still at the “Girls are icky” stage.
It didn’t help that with puberty came acne, glasses, and weight gain. I was also the tallest and heaviest girl in my class. My twin sister wasn’t having the same problem.
A group of kids called me “Dino” after the dog on the Flintstones. My first name is close to Dino. Every piece of paperwork had your last name first. My last name has to do with food in a way. When it was called out first everyone laughed and said that must be why I’m so fat and ugly.
There were not many days where I wasn’t tripped, called names, had chairs pulled out from under me, spit on, or ignored.
I began drinking at 16 and went to parties with a group from another town. They were older. A few were from the town I lived in and went to school in. There were nights where I was bullied at parties and would lock myself in my car where I cried myself to sleep. These parties were up an old dirt road called “Purgatory” that the police never found out about. Purgatory was a good name for it.
It’s where I thought sexual acts equaled someone liking you or a way to get someone to like you. I would take many years for me to realize that sex and love are two different things.
It’s also where a darker side of myself started to emerge little by little.
If you are mistreated and told you are nothing for long enough you start to believe it. When you’re Bipolar and don’t know it and an alcoholic you can turn that hurt and pain into something else at times.
There were times when I was drinking where I felt cocky, almost better than everyone, like I could take on the world. Situations became really bad, really fast on these nights. I remember one night J’s grandfather had passed away and he was depressed. But as usual there was a group of loud idiots in the living room. I left him in his room and went to tell them to be quiet. A girl I didn’t know said “F*ck you! Who are you anyway, you fat c*nt.” That didn’t sit well with me. At the time I loved J and I knew what it felt like to lose someone close to you. He had no one to take with him to the wake so he asked me because he knew I had manners and could speak respectively to adults. So I to be fair I asked the girl to repeat herself in the hope that the people with her who knew me would tell her to shut up. Nope. So I punched her in the face. She was very quiet after.
I’m not proud of any of the things I’ve done but in a way I miss that person could stand up for themselves and say what they wanted. Instead of this person who starts to stutter and shake at loud noises, heavy footsteps, angry men’s voices, and cries at everything.
I usually didn’t get into physical fights with other females because I didn’t think it was fair in my mind. I thought because of my size it wasn’t fair. Not to mention it was mostly men who did the most damage. I did fight a lot of men for good reason but violence isn’t really the answer. One day you will meet someone bigger and badder than you are, and on that day no one will help you, some will think you deserve it, they won’t know what you’ve been through your entire life.
In the end you’ll go back to being the frightened child you used to be but this time it will be much worse. This time you will have memories of the things you did and the worst that was done to you.
If someone had intervened when it all started maybe things could’ve been different. Maybe it wouldn’t be so bad now. I don’t know. I do know that when an adult notices something is a little off with a child they should go with their gut. You don’t have to call in Children’s Services but maybe observe their behavior or talk to their teacher.
If nothing is said than nothing can be done. And where does that leave them as an adult?