In the last few weeks the news has been flooded with disturbing stories about young gay people committing suicide because of bullying. I am dedicating this blog to all those kids and all the grown up kids that have yet to tell their stories. It feels like another life time since I allowed my memories to take me back to that year it seemed my innocence was stolen from me.
It was grade seven. T.R. McEwen, Oshawa. I had just finished 7 incredible years in public school with great teachers like Mrs. Gardner, Miss Mowett, and Mrs. Chalmers and was surrounded by great friends when my school life changed me forever. Grade seven, or what I would like to refer to as my year in hell. The year began like any other year. I was excited, nervous, wide eyed to the changes in scenery, teachers and friends I was about to encounter.
What I didn’t expect was what came next. The abuse, verbal and physical, that I had received at the hand of the school bullies. I would love to name them all including the principal who were involved and who did nothing to help me through this terrible and terrifying year but I won’t, simply because I wouldn’t give them the credit of name recognition on my blog. But I will say they made my life a living hell. I was chased home almost everyday. I left school in tears everyday and why, because I was different. Oh I was cute enough and smart enough but my voice was a little higher than the average kid. At least that’s what prompted them to begin the teasing. Of course I was called gay, queer, fag and all those lovely things I knew nothing about at the time. My parents decided to call our Member of Parliament and demand I be transferred or I would not be attending school at all.
The abusing year cost me my grades and I failed. It was probably the most painful time of my life. Thank God I got my transfer to E. A. Lovell where a teacher named Mr. Harmer would change my life forever. I was treated like every child should be treated. Like they are the only child in the world. I went on to take the lead role in monster madness, the school musical, as well as excel in the performing arts winning the CNE rising star competition, the prize grand champion.
My point is this if you are being bullied you must get help and if your parents are too dull to do it for you, get it!!!! Go to your MP office, Police, Principal, Help lines. It’s not easy but you can do it. It’s your life and your choice. Make every adult listen and make every adult accountable that doesn’t. You have more power than you think. I felt like I was going to die but somehow I made it through and you can too.
I’m still singing! I have great friends today and I’m happy with my other career too. I love to write my blog and I have someone who loves me. Things can seem pretty hopeless for anyone that is experiencing abuse but you are not alone. There is not a day that goes by that my insecurities don’t come back to haunt me but all I have to remember is that I am a survivor.
I may not have had the courage to fight back fist to fist but I did one better I made the choice to make the rest of my life count and to never get pushed into any corner again!! Bullying is a crime! Speak out! Get help! Don’t take no for an answer!!!!
Your friend Bruce
edited by Mary Ellen Monk