It always amazes me when I hear of victims being told by others to “toughen up”. Because to endure long, miserable years of being bullied by everyone, for everything and make it to graduation? You have to be tough!
For me, it took so much courage to step unto that school bus everyday, knowing all too well what was in store for me as soon as I got on and even worse once I graced the entrance to the school. It was like walking the Green Mile!
The daily ritual of being name-called, slut-shamed, tripped in the hallways, having my books knocked out of my hands, my long hair pulled, my head slammed into lockers, slapped, punched, kicked, shoved to the floor and a barrage of death threats…it was never-ending! Through all of it, I never gave up!
I’ll say again, victims of bullying are tough! They have to be!
The finding a reason to get up and go to school everyday!
The holding on to your dignity with everything you have in you!
The daily facing of your worst fear!
The enduring countless insults and beatings!
The choking back of a river of tears which begs to pour forth!
The constant thievery of your pride and personhood!
The never-ending violations of your right to safety and to learn in peace!
To face all this on a daily basis and STILL find a reason to keep going??? That takes grit! It takes guts! Moreover, it takes balls of steel!
So, before you tell some poor, bullied soul to “toughen up”, ask yourself this question. Would you have the fortitude to hold up under that kind of pressure?