Day after day, every time it got worse. Words turned to pushes, then to punches and kicks. People looked at him with respect, then it became pity. Then they began to laugh. He didn’t get it. Why are they being different?! I thought they liked me! The boy began to doubt them. Doubt everything that had ever happened to him. Everything they’d done, said, all the good times they’d had.
Things only got worse. They said he had to tell them when it happened, so he did. He told them every time and they spoke with his bullies, they only got nastier. As people stopped liking him, he stopped liking them. Stopped wanting to visit them. Stopped wanting to talk with them altogether. As the boy regressed into his own little world, people left him to be alone. Places he would sit with ten, maybe twenty others were now his corners of the field to sit and ponder the reason for his life.
Years went on and he grew stressed, and very unsociable. Incapable of talking to others at time. He stuttered, he fidgeted. Sometimes he would sit alone and cry, and not talk when people tried to help. He didn’t care that they cared, he just wanted to express himself. The boy started to draw and read, trying to find some understanding of the world.
As his knowledge grew, his friends dropped. Eventually, nobody really cared. By this time, a long, hard three years had passed since he had begun this ordeal that people called ‘school.’ Gathering more things, he progressed through the school like nobody had seen before. His creative and mathematical skills grew fast. At the same time, a little bit of sociality rested within him, shrinking by the day. Nobody cared for him, so he made the feeling mutual. Right next to that little bit of hope, sat something endlessly cold, hard and dark. Revenge.
Yet another year passed and he still gave in to the fights, never ran from the chased, shook off the names and heckles. They thought he ignored it all, but deep down, something was growing inside him; and it’s name was Hate.
As the hate began to control him, the boy grew angry. Sometimes in lessons someone would call him a name and he’d throw things, or push the table into their stomach. People saw his weak attempts to lash out as comedy, nothing that they should fear. Until one day when they were chasing him round at lunch time, and the hate took it’s toll.
First came the big kid, the ‘leader’ of the gang. As normal, it was him that did the most damage and took the least punishment. The little boy had just about taken enough of this guy and wanted it over. As normal he watched from the corner of his bruised eye as he approached, but even surprised himself with what came out from his throat.
DON’T TALK TO ME!
A fist came across and struck the big kid over the cheek. Without holding back, the little kid pounced onto his fat chest and punched again and again, at any soft spot he could find. A fist went right down his throat and drew vomit. Another one split off into fingers and one stabbed his eye. By the time someone had pulled them apart, the bigger kid was a sorry sight. Blood was trickling from his nose and one eye in a steady stream, and vomit was collected in his mouth and oozing down his agape jaw, and down his jumper mixing with the blood. The little kid stood tall, glaring at anyone who dared try again.
The damage was done though. Despite his victory, the bullies took their toll. Stress had pulled his diet up and now he was overweight, not the unusually thin kid that the photos showed in reception. As everyone else in his family had grown into, black glasses now rested on his nose. His red hair, the source of many a name to call him, had grown to near shoulder length. Even his mind was changed. The little socially happy child was gone, and a recessive dullard had replaced him. He had lost the art of conversation, and often spoke to people that didn’t care. He never noticed.
This child was diagnosed with Bipolar Disorder, Asperger’s Syndrome, and Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. He grew on to be in year 10, where he now resides. Two failed relationships on, but some activity now flourishes, and his social life is slowly rebuilt. His name is Daniel, he is 14 years old, and now he faces more challenges. But every time he feels down, he looks back and thinks to himself I’ve been through worse.