In 1999, I was in year 9 at school, the year before starting GCSE's... I was about 14 at the time, and shy, quiet and a target for bullies everywhere. My art teacher had taught both my older brothers before me, and was a friend of the family because of this. I had been reaching the end of yet another few weeks of bullying, and I was getting extremely upset about it, often crying on my way home.
In an art lesson, one of the bullies stole my pencil case, threw it across the room and sat back down, watching me as I went to fetch it. Later on, he grabbed my school tie and yanked it towards him, causing me to stumble. I snapped and stood up for myself for the first time, snatching the tie from his hand and pushing him away. I sat back down. I was shaking all over and couldnt focus for the rest of the lesson. I was riled, upset, emotional at what Id finally done.
I was slow to leave the classroom, for fear of the bully having another go at me outside. I was the last to leave the classroom, and my teacher asked me "Peter, are you okay?". "yes" I answered. "No your not." he said. He knew what I needed, and that I was once again putting a brave face on it. We had a chat, he made me smile and confident again. He taught me some life lessons, including "toughen up, dont be a bully yourself, but remember you are stronger inside, and if the bullies see this, they will stop. Believe in yourself". These words stuck with me, and as I walked the corridors at school, holding my head high and not acknowledging the bullies in any way, the bullying soon stopped.
Thankyou to my teacher for noticing when I needed someone the most, and for being there and saying exactly what I needed to hear.
Submitted by Anonymous
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