So today is ‘Stand up to bullying’ day. I cannot begin to say how important this is as bullying does happen and I have seen serious matters just laughed off and ignored. It is great to see that figures with a public status such as George Shelley (the actual love of my life) and Nathan Sykes are voicing their views and showing their support.
Firstly, both high school lessons that I used to volunteer at weekly there was one child in each of those classes that was being bullied. Both of the teachers are amazing and have previously taught me before (I’m not saying anything bad towards them!). However the ‘signs’ that I found so easy to spot were just ignored, it was bottom line impossible not to know that these kids were being picked on because it was constant name calling and offensive ‘jokes’ which shocked me. The first ‘victim’ would ask me at the beginning of each lesson if they could sit on the chair at the back which faced away from the class and the teacher. It was clear how desperate they were and I had to say yes, throughout the lesson I would hear people calling her things (even the quiet ones who didn’t say anything else!). I was in the class to support the children who required more assistance than the general teachers input however most of my time was spent telling them to turn around and stop shouting out names to that person. After two more weeks, I saw the same thing happening and thought how can this person stand it? It obviously happened in every single lesson and I only saw one hour of it a week. I told the person in charge and strongly said that something needs to be done straight away, this isn’t one of those things you can just forget to deal with. A few days later I was told that there was a deeper issue and everything has been sorted out. I saw the person in the lunch hall the other day with their new friends and I literally found myself just standing still in the middle of the hall staring and smiling at them. But those people were the bystanders who saw everything but didn’t say anything. Schools in particular go on about bullying all the time, but I feel this is done more because they have to, it’s the rules rather than setting up an environment that if a child does need to talk and find themselves in that situation then they will feel comfortable and know exactly what to do.
I got ‘bullied’ last year, I don’t think it was bullying that’s just what everyone else called it. I found it so hard to actually go up to someone and tell them about it. Once I started, everything felt so much easier this is cliché but a weight was lifted off my shoulders. But again the people who were there to help me tried to turn the problem on me and ask if I’m sure that this is what happened and if it could possibly be my fault. I had listened to around 10 years of talks on bullying and what you should do if you are being bullied and when I did ask for help, the ‘problem’ was covered up. The person was not punished to the extent that they should have been and this angers me so much. I was told that this was because ‘it’s the first time that they’ve ever done anything like this’ but that is rubbish. The evidence or the proof or whatever was given and it was ignored. The fact that this wasn’t sorted out properly made it so much harder for me to get over it and feel better about myself but the whole experience has taught me so much and made it clear what behaviour you should tolerate and those which are just unacceptable. I still have to go to school with this person (I’m not even going to start on this smh) but it is crazy how much my self esteem has improved. And my husbands (JJ and Josh from Union J) have called me pretty so who cares what anyone else thinks ?
What I am trying to say is that bullying happens! Not only to children in schools but that is all that I have personally seen. It is SO common however people do not spot it or if they do they just ignore because it’s not affecting them and it is much easier to sit and watch than to actually do something. Also if anyone thinks that cyberbullying is not real and use that tweet from Tyler the Creator then literally you are welcome to message me (twitter: @wtvraysh) and your wrong opinion will change.
I will leave this post by saying a few things thoughts that make me happy and sometimes are literally the things that keep me going.
1) What other people think of you is none of your business. There will always be someone that doesn’t like you and that’s okay.
2) Don’t hold grudges!! Forgive the person, not for them but for yourself. I found that every time I would see someone that I dislike giving them evils all the time made me unhappy as well and probably meant more to me than them.
3) Ignore the people that make you unhappy, like seriously do not invite them into your space. I have had more than a few awkward encounters with someone who I on one hand really want to speak to but on the other hand just know that they have bad intentions (I can’t really explain it). I have bumped into them so many times (w h y) and I just fully ignore them. You really wouldn’t believe how awkward some of those moments were with me not saying something but it needs to be done.
4) You have to realise that whoever you build any sort of relationship with will hurt you. Some more than others but there will be a time where they will upset you and you need to ask yourself are they worth that?
5) Don’t constantly choose your friends over your family, you will regret it.
6) Okay this one is cringy and I actually do this but treat yourself – your mind and your body – like it is your child. I don’t have children but omg I cannot wait until I do, but one of my cousins she is 3 years old and seriously there is no one in this world that I love more than her. There is a family wedding coming up in August and since like February my whole family go shopping and leave me and her at home on the weekends and she is SO well-behaved and so amazing and looking after her makes me want kids a billion times more. So when something really bad happens and I straight away turn to blame myself I think what would I do if it was my cousin? The answer 100% of the time so far is, nothing – it was mistake or it’s not her fault and it will get better. I use whatever I would do for her, to myself.
7) Last one I swear but remember that every single person is going through something (which for a majority of people it is hidden and not known by everyone) so just be kind. You never know what someone is going through so why would you want to cause them additional pain or worries? Bottom line if you have nothing nice to say shut the hell up.
Follow the #StandUpToBullying hashtag on Twitter.
AND no one @ me but all bullies are insecure and cowards and what they say reflects them so much more than it will reflect you. And I can promise that you will get over it, give it time and find something to keep you busy.