How long do the scars from bullying last? 50th reunion, anyone?

In a world where it’s OK for political candidates to say about people who are homosexual that “That’s not how God created us,” and mainstream magazines publish articles about bullying in casual tones that approach sanctioning it as an acceptable form of social Darwinism, and this very social Darwinism is an entrenched part of much of our culture–in a world like that, how does someone heal from the scars of bullying?

As anyone who has been bullied can attest, even if you don’t dwell on the experience, the experience shapes you and the psychic wounds stay behind, easily opened with the slightest sensory trigger, like, say…the sight of the person who bullied you.

At a fiftieth high school class reunion, a friend turned to his wife and said, “Lucille, I do not want to sit at a table with Burt.” To which Lucille, replied, “For heaven’s sake, why not?”

“Because, Lucille,” replied my friend, “Burt was a bully fifty years ago, and he is still a bully tonight.” Read more

Fifty years on, and the memories were powerful enough that these two men, nearing seventy, could not even sit at the same table together. I wonder how the septuagenarian bully felt, having a former classmate sit at a nearby table, reminding him of his childhood behaviors.

Do the scars of being bullied still linger with you? Or, if you were a bully, do you feel a sense of regret now that those behaviors are behind you?


About ejwillingham

Sciwriter/editor/autism-ADHD parent. SciMaven @ I speak my pieces @ & @
This entry was posted in Bullying in the news, Sharing stories and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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