Is it really that simple?

Is it really that simple?

I was a bully.  I was bullied.  Now I’m a witness.

I was a severely spoiled adolescent.  I truly had no reason at all to be insecure or unhappy because I wanted for nothing, yet I was still hurting.  I didn’t like myself, and I often made myself feel better at the expense of others.  That was junior high.  In high school, the tables turned.  When I failed socially somehow (which happened often), I was bullied by those who were ranked higher than I.  I internalized their hateful comments, which made me hurt and dislike myself more.  Once I was back on top socially, I would begin to project my hurt to others again.  It was a cycle.  I see that now. 

The difference with my story is that I was privileged enough to have periods of bullying rather than being bullied.  Some don’t.  Either way, I was always a part of the problem, never the solution. 

After reading this blog, a lot became clear to me:  why I bullied, why I was bullied, and now Why my students bully.  I am in a perfect position to reach young people with Dan’s message, and I hope I can.  PEOPLE WHO LOVE THEMSELVES DO NOT HURT OTHERS.  It is that simple.  It explains everything I see happen as a teacher, youth leader, parent.  We are called to love others and to help them love themselves. 

I’m so sorry about the way I acted.  But Dan is right about the bullies and those who are bullied not being able to see beyond their current situation.  I never thought I would grow into an adult who would rather eat glass than hurt another person’s feelings.  A person who would care so much about the comfort of others.  I never thought I’d be a mom who wants the world to treat her children like the beautiful little souls that they are.  I never thought I’d carry so much regret. I wonder if those who mistreated me do too?  It doesn’t matter.  Thank God the past doesn’t matter.  But the future does:  for my students and for Talan and Tessa.  I hope people can begin to love.  We can’t afford to hope it will go away on its own. 

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