Long ago I was a person with a very low self-esteem. I used to be that person for a very long time. The memories of me as a child are bitter, as it reminds me of getting bullied. I used to be a kind-hearted child, always trying to understand other’s pain and help them. But sometimes those people rely on their harsh side, cover themselves in darkness so as to not get hurt by anyone else. They prefer hate over pity. They build the strongest walls around their real characters that sometimes it’s so hard to realize that in actuality, they suffer inside.
I was the weakest one on the basketball team, I was small, slow and clumsy. It’s not surprising that I used to get bullied by most. But there was a guy who used to act nice towards me and ask others not to bully me. When no one was watching, he used to call me names and beat me around in the halls, take away my lunch money and would threaten me, so that I don’t tell that to anyone else. I was afraid and kept my mouth shut. But what I was more afraid of, was my desire to know the reason why he acted that way. He hated me, clearly. But I couldn’t find the reason why. He was nothing like me, he was tall, well built, was the captain of the team I used to play in. He was everything, that I couldn’t become.
During each tournament, my parents came to support and cheer me on, they never missed a single match. Made me want to continue and try even harder. It was then that I realized that his parents never showed up. The curious me went to ask him the reason, one day. That was the first time when he hit me before everyone. That day he beat me up the worse, the hardest which sent me to the hospital. When recovering, I heard from some friends who used to visit me regularly that he was thrown out of the team and was suspended from the school for a month. During that time others became much friendlier and nice towards me, but it didn’t feel right. It was then when I realized what it feels to be pitied. I did not like that and thought if he felt the same way when I asked him that. I asked myself if I was wrong for asking him that why his parents never came to see him play even though he was so good at it.
I was discharged from the hospital and was allowed to start going school a while before his suspension was over. When he finally showed up at class, everyone stayed away and hate talked behind his back. He was ignored by most and was treated with disrespect by the almost everyone. Soon he used to get bullied. Even when he was having lunch, someone would just go and spill his shake on his clothes or just throw his food on the floor and ask him to lick it up. It was hard to watch when others actually laughed at that. They were having fun because the bully had become the bullied, he was another victim of that evil, which no one tried to stop. Forgetting that I was once bullied by him, I stood up for him one day. Was I wrong? I do not know, but I did what I thought was right at that moment. I asked everyone to stop. I heard them say that he used to bully me or did I forget. They said that he was a bully and deserves the same. I knew that it was wrong what they thought. I told them what I thought was right at that time and slowly the chaos lightened up. He asked me if I’d take my revenge the same way he used to bully me, by hiding that from the rest. I did not answer his question, I walked away.
After he realized that what he thought about me was wrong, he confronted me and asked if I’d give him a chance to talk to which I agreed. He asked me why I would save him even though he did the same to me. the only response I could give was that I thought what was right at that moment instead of my personal grudge. I told him that I don’t plan on forgiving him but that I would like to know his reason to bully me, the reason why he hated me so much. I was astounded by his answer. It was his story which only a handful people would know. His mother was an addict, she was thrown out by his stepfather and that his mother cursed him every day. They used to live in a tiny apartment. His mother slept with random men to get money for the bills and her drugs. She almost tried to burn him alive one day. Diluted and mindless she blamed his son for everything. He was just a small child back then and when he saw how lucky I was to have such parents, he became jealous. Even though I was good at nothing still they supported me, unlike his parents who treated him like a burden.
Never judge a person by their behaviour. When you don’t know their story, You don’t know them.