I once made a journal related to bullying issues. Instead of asking whether the reader once been bullied, I asked whether any of the reader once been a bully.
It also contained one of my darkest confessions, that I once been a bully towards a beautiful girl of my kindergarten: KIREI.
Have you been a bully???I'm reading a manga titled LIFE, by Keiko Suenobu. Have you read it? (I spotted some fanarts of the series here ) From wikipedia I have just known that the manga won an award for shoujo manga in 2006.
I'm following Iijime series by Kaoru Igarashi, but compared to LIFE, LIFE has more intense story and strong graphics (maybe because it's a long series, while Iijime series are consisted by one shots).
Seems like bullying (iijime) is one serious issue in Japan since many cases had led to commit suicide action (jisatsu). I think it happens in every country in this world (even in mine, though I haven't spotted a comic writer from my country that concern on this issue just like in Japan). However, reading LIFE makes me think, how terrible it is to have a life in Japan??? Are their juvenile delinquencies really that horrible??? If you read LIFE you'll find that the antagonists are real evil, even worse than the antagonists of mature dorama (at least what I've watched so far). And to ha
So...weeks has been passed since I published that journal here. This morning I was stumbled into someone's blog, talking about his experience dealing with bullying in his childhood.
He told about a girl in his elementary school day. The girl was poor, black-skinned, not too smart, and a daughter of a pedicab driver (pedicab is just like a rickshaw. Only the driver is on the back of the vehicle, riding it like riding bicycle).
Pedicab drivers are never been rich in my country. It's a menial job. And the drivers are often chased by traffic police because they're considered disturbing the traffic. In fact they did ignore many traffic rules XD But people, mostly the house-wives often use their services.
So, back to the story. This humble girl, were being the joke-sacrifice of the class. None of them remembered who started all of those sick-routine. In school, a joke where you pair or being paired with other kids are common. And for the boys of the class, being paired with THAT humble girl was a long nightmare.
All classmates will make jokes and mock the "victim" for days and weeks. And as normal boys, even in that very young age, none of them wanted to be paired with that girl. They will snort and look away, tried to avoid being eyes on eyes with that girl. Any communication was not recommended too. No boys wanted to sit on the chair besides her. She was always alone. She was always lonely.
The blogger said that he actually fed up with the condition. But there was nothing he could do. So he just went with the flow. Especially because he once being the "paired victim" after he was only pointing to a mango tree in front of the girl's house. The girl was living near the school.
The boy said to himself, "What happen if you're becoming that girl? Going to school everyday, only to find all the boys in the class are avoiding your eyes, not willing to speak with you? Even pretending not to see you whenever you're coming in front of the class.
Those thinking would strike every girl like me. And as a girl I was really sad when I was reading that. For a girl, being admitted, or to be fit in might be the most important thing. Sometimes it's even more important than achievements or anything, just like what Taylor Swift said in one of her Shake Off Video Clip's outtake.
Even the loneliest wolf still needs another wolf.
Then someday, the teacher finally knew what was going on in her class. The girl was going to the front of the class to sing. As usual all boys were avoiding her eyes. They hid their faces behind their books. And the teacher was angry.
Deep in his heart, the little blogger was both happy and relieve that his teacher finally stopped the senseless bullying. He felt his boy classmates were all like that too. All of them were fed up to be the bully. They actually didn't want it happen, but all were the same, they didn't dare to stop it.
The story continues. Now the blogger has been a grown up man. He has been more mature in many aspects, and been a blogger who likes to share his stories with his readers. Whenever he remembered that story of his childhood, be became really mad. He kept counting how many times he did something that he didn't really want during his life times, even till he got to college, only just to be accepted by society. Feeling so helpless to be heavily constructed by society. He said something like this, "People keep telling you what you should do and what you shouldn't. Like...
"If you speak up for LGBT right, that they could have a proper life, education, and job, people will say that you're also LGBT."
"If you speak up for the world to against bullying, maybe you once bullied too."
"If you speak up for the people of Palestine, you're damn fucking extreme terrorist!"
"If you speak up for the world to save the endangered orangutan, so you're orangutan too..."
OK, he didn't say anything about Palestine, but he did say about LGBT and orangutan. I just added my own point of view here.
How many of us been a bully by design? We did not want to be a bully, but our environment designed us to be. Or we let them design us. We can't stand and protect the bullied although we really want to, because we're afraid to be the next victim. Let's point out this thing, that witnessing a bullying but doesn't do anything about that (either we're scared or just fucking ignorant), means involving in the bullying also. What will you do if you see someone is nearly falling at the cliff. Just walk pass by, pull his/her hands out, or even push his/her to the cliff to quicken the process?
In many sad stories, for instance, bullying stories, we will always hope the plot twist in the ending. Where we could see the victim of bullying finally raise their chins, change themselves, and shake the world. As many people do that. Do you know that so many Hollywood artists once being bullied? Now see how they laugh at their bully. Many Hollywood teen flicks also showed how the ugly ducklings finally turn themselves to be a gracious swans.
Too bad, reality is not always present you with good endings. It's suck. But sometimes it's really important to give us lessons.
OK, I'll continue. The blogger now is a mature man. He secretly wishes to meet that humble girl again. To shake her hands, and say that he didn't mean to be that mean. Frighteningly, sometimes God answered your prays in unexpected ways.
One hot day, the blogger was walking on the street. Where he suddenly meet, a humble girl resembled his bullied classmate. Yes, it was her. She was walking alone in the street. Eyes went as blank as when she was a kid. Only now it's much emptier. She laughed by herself, laughed at nothing, while the pedicab drivers were teasing at her. And her only reaction was laughing.
Her mind was not straight anymore.
At that time, the blogger thought, maybe his childhood friends were all wrong. Maybe that girl was not actually ugly. Since the pedicab drivers were teasing her...
I leave the ending here for you to conclude...To be concluded