I was teased by almost everyone I knew in real life. I was teased by people I should have expected to be loved and accepted by. I was twitted for my clothes, my speech, my height, my interests.
I was told I was a loser, I even had a large, huge L painted on my face. Kids younger than me would look at me and whisper loser loud enough for me to hear. Kids older than me would ask me painful questions, and when I would fumble for an answer, they would always go, “Oh, right. You’re a Woleslagle.” As if in being born into my family, I was put on a lower pedestal than them.
Friends snooped through my personal belongings, constantly critiquing my height, telling me that my accomplishments weren’t really anything in the big scheme of things because “oh you know, so-and-so is wayyyyyyy better than you.”
My hair was the wrong color, wrong texture, wrong length. I wore the wrong shoes, I said the wrong answer to their stupid questions, I would stand up to them and tell them what I thought.
Until I had enough.
There’s only so long that you can go on confronting a lie until it overwhelms you. Until you believe that you’re ugly, because every girl you know has told you so, and the boys agree, and so does the babies in the nursery. It’s just the adults that roll their eyes and ask you if you actually believe it.
Because yes, you do.
I decided that if I couldn’t be with them without being hurt, I wouldn’t be with them at all. It came to the point that I was crying myself to sleep after seeing these people. I would avoid church luncheons, hiding in the sanctuary and playing piano while everyone else played and talked.
One time they came to taunt me while I played, and I ran out the side door without looking at them, words of hatred following me. I threw myself down in the field and cried, because in that instant I knew I was a loser. I knew that my piano skills were trash, I was trash, and they were right. What place did a loser have on this earth?
It was reinforced at home. Siblings telling me I was a liar, what would people on my blog and my friends think if they knew who I was? How would I like to lose all my following? I was mean, cruel, a loser, and a liar, and no one should ever spend time with me.
They wished they could throw me in a trash can. My siblings told me to be quiet, to go away if I had a problem with what they were saying. And so I did. I spent a lot of time upstairs in my room.
My parents couldn’t understand why I didn’t want to go to church. Why I didn’t want to see certain “friends.” Why I spent time in my bedroom. Why I seemed miserable. But I didn’t tell them everything. Because didn’t they already know the truth?
Their daughter was a loser, a misfit, she was stupid, ugly, too tall, a liar, and her accomplishments were failures in the big scheme of things.
I was to be quiet about something that hurt so much. I couldn’t refute the lies anymore, and in a way, the lies had become a part of me. When anyone said anything to contradict the lies, they seemed to be the ones that were lying. Everyone in my small world agreed that I was a terrible person that didn’t deserve to be here.
Thank goodness my world grew. You see, people drift in and out of your world. The ones that seemed to be the only people you knew kinda get smaller when your world gets bigger, and you meet people who look at you and see the real you. Or the you that you could be.
And you never know what real friends are until you have lots of fake ones.
At this point in my life, an adult started trying to figure me out. Not as a “little kid” or a “teenager” who had problems. But as a friend. She wanted to understand what made Amie run, what thoughts hid in her reserved body.
And it didn’t take too long for me to mention some of the things that happened, jokingly of course. Because it’s hilarious to be told you’re a loser.
“Do you believe them?” Such a straight forward question, with such a hard answer. Because the answer was yes. I did believe that I was a loser. She asked if I had told my parents about this, and yes, I had. They knew, the kids’ parents knew, everyone knew. But what were they to do?
That’s the question. What are we to do?
In my own experience, it just continued to spiral. Those lies that I was told took root deep inside, and pushed a darker thought to my mind. If I was all of these things, why was I even alive?
I wrestled with this question for three years. About six months ago, it was stronger than ever. Being left by one friend, ghosted by another, being ignored by my peers at church, and having lots of the adults at church ignore me as well, I felt as if I didn’t matter.
If I had fallen in the forest, I wouldn’t have made a sound. No one would have known, or cared. Just another hopeless girl hopelessly gone. Good thing we got rid of the weak, right?
But then, people were annoying and destroyed my plans. One random person kept nagging me, wanting to be my friend. Another friend would send me email after email to make sure I was okay. One friend asked me to her birthday party, dragging me out of my little hole. Because they wanted me.
Didn’t they know I was a loser? Didn’t they understand I had nothing to offer them? I would scar them, hurt them, they would go running from me like all the other friends in the past?
One word sentences, monosyllables. If I can scare them away before I care about them, then we’re all good. Just more people to confirm my theory that I don’t matter in this world, because I’m stupid and I suck.
But they didn’t run because of my meanness. They stayed. And they’re still here. I’m going to be in one’s wedding, and the other one literally just texted me and oh God.
The little girl who was so lonely has friends.
The one who sat in the middle of the field crying because she wasn’t wanted. The little girl who sat on the swings alone and told herself it didn’t matter. The one who used to whisper to herself that she would prove the bullies wrong.
She now has friends who say it for her. She’s going to prove those bullies wrong.
And so this post is to thank my friends. Thank you so much, for helping me. For loving me even when I was unlovable. For being there, even when I wouldn’t talk. For talking to me, for making me laugh. For giving me virtual hugs in place of real ones. Or, in some cases, keeping your distance and giving me pats. 😂
For you reading this post, please remember that the stupid things you say to people stick. You might have been kidding when you told your friend she was too skinny or too fat, but it sticks and stays.
I’m not saying my friends are perfect. In fact, I could tell you some of their faults. XD And I’m not saying I’m perfect either. My friends could tell you all my faults, which are many. O.o I’m saying that we have a friendship, founded on our love for each other and our love of God, which keeps it strong. Even when we get upset with each other.
If you have been bullied, or are dealing with something I mentioned in this post, please contact me through the contact button. I love hearing from all of you, in the comments or in emails. So please, please, please, don’t be shy. Talk to me.
Let’s prove the bullies wrong