- A memory from when I was eleven years old
One of my best friends was bullied by some girls from our school. The situation was resolved, thankfully, but there was an awkwardness between my best friend and the particular group of girls. No one deserves to be bullied, and I have always been certain of this. When something horrible happens to someone close to us, though, we can be even aware of our already-held opinions (even though we should always concern them). My opinions of these girls were altered and I was angry my best friend had gone through it. The memory I want to draw focus on, though, is this: When the girls approached my best friend, a while after the situation was “resolved”, with an apology, my best friend accepted it. Easily. She smiled, and called her once “friends”, friends again.
- A memory from when I was twelve years old
A girl in my class experienced a lot of heartless cruelty by our peers – cruelty to this day that sickens me – and as much as the teachers were aware of it, as much as myself and others tried to make the comments stop, they did not. I do not consider myself worthy of five gold badges for my actions and so please do not consider myself as one who believes I am a hero when I write this next memory. I do not. One comment was said to the girl in my presence and someone I respected laughed. I turned and glared at him (I am the master of a glare in a situation I do not agree with) and when he continued laughing, hoping for approval of some sort and I made it clear I was not impressed, the boy’s smile and laugh stopped instantly. As another comment rolled by, he began to tell someone off for their actions.
- A memory from when I was seventeen
When I was leaving school once, I witnessed a situation involving girls maybe three or four years younger than me. I’d like not to defend what I did but I was very confused about what was happening so really didn't know how to take the situation- so I try not to tell myself off too much, as angry as I was at myself at the time. I was sat at a bus stop, waiting for my bus to get home. Some schoolgirls past me, being quite loud and boisterous, but all seemingly finding whatever was happening quite funny. I was suddenly a little aware of one of the girls being the butt of the joke, and maybe not being part of their group, as I heard some of their comments. Really unsure of what was happening, I got on my bus that turned up. Regretfully, things seemed to get all the more unfair for the girl that was that but of the joke. It was safe to say I felt incredibly sick and ashamed of myself for not acting sooner. The girl looked distraught as they shouted her and were obviously saying horrible things. (Please read on to find out that I tried to amend my wrongdoing.)
The morals I learnt from these memories (which at the time were very much “here and now” situations) have definitely taught me lessons in abundance.
When my friend accepted the apology of the girls who bullied her, not long after, when we were alone, she said she saw they were sorry and she wanted to move on. The girls were horrible to her, but once they apologised I know not of an occasion where they were ever malicious again. My best friend took their apology and was so very graceful about it (I am thankful their apology and actions that followed were sincere but naturally this is not always the case). This taught me acceptance and courage and the freedom of letting go of a grudge. When a girl in my class was bullied and the boy clearly was ashamed of his actions, his decision to then try and stop cruel comments was one that was something so good. Naturally, he should not have supported the bullying in the first place, but he learned. And the third memory, although one of my biggest regrets, taught me a lot. I was very distraught after the incident and as soon as I got home, I emailed the headteacher of my sixth form, attached to the school of the group of girls, which was also my college. I had a meeting with her and told her the story, in the hope that it would be resolved. Although still ashamed, I hope I had amended my ignorance.
I thought I’d talk about some things that are wuite personal to me, even if they are predominantly about someone else.
Putting Right & Moving On,
The Girl in the Moonlight.