School days

Written in 2004

People can be unbelievably cruel, often not bothering to think through the consequences of their actions. It is my hope that this page will encourage people to think before they act; something that seems insignificant to them may have far reaching consequences in the life of another.

My time at primary school went by without any real trouble; though I do remember spending a lot of time standing at the edge of the playground, alone, gazing into the distance and wishing I could live by the church I could see. I also remember watching the behaviour of one of the girls in my class (aged about seven) and recognising that she too was being touched by someone - I think I even wondered if it might have been the same people; it wasn't. Several years later I found out her father had been abusing her.

Middle school quite good, though I was absent for weeks at a time when mother had her manic episodes; she would keep both myself and my elder brother at home to keep her company. Who knows what effect these missing chunks of school had on my education.

When I was twelve I moved up to secondary school; this was when my life started to get a lot worse. Most of the first year was fine; I settled in well, and was fairly popular - but things suddenly changed. I remember exactly what caused things to change, and when it happened:

One afternoon I was walking along side one of the school buildings, after a fire alarm I think, with a friend. The friend, Hazel, had a crush on an older pupil at the school. The boy she had a crush on, Stephen, was good friends with someone called Bryan who had sexually abused me on multiple occasions - a few days previously the two of them had pressured me into having sexual intercourse with Stephen. It happened in a corner of one of the council garages Bryan's father had the use of. Bryan had planned to take a turn too, but changed his mind after Stephen finished. I confided in Hazel about what had happened and can honestly say that doing so was one of the worst mistakes I've made in my life; within a few days, it seemed everyone at the school knew what had happened.

Stephen was a popular boy. His friends didn't believe he would have sexual intercourse with a twelve year old; they decided I was only trying to stir up trouble and turned on me - seemingly overnight, my life became a nightmare. Everywhere I looked, someone was calling me names or threatening me. People I had never seen before would walk up to me and make threats; those who didn't make threats simply ignored me. It seemed that the whole school was against me.

After several weeks of constant bullying and abuse, I stopped going to school. On May 9th I was, as usual, avoiding school. It was raining and cold so rather than get wet, I sheltered close to the garage where the incident with Stephen had taken place; this was the day when I first tried taking a stand by saying NO. It resulted in me being forcibly assaulted by the three older teenage boys, including Bryan, who I'd said no to. Two of the three admitted and were convicted of indecent assault; Bryan was uncharged as he had not directly taken part in the assault, but only watched and encouraged the others.

Despite those who attacked me admitting what they had done, this assault served to intensify the bullying I was already suffering. As far as people were concerned, I was "causing trouble for innocent boys". At this point not going to school was of no help to me - the bullying started happening everywhere I went. Before long, it was so bad that I became too scared to leave the house: This fear of leaving the home and dealing with people still causes huge problems in my life today, fifteen years after it began. It is this fear that has so far prevented me from leading a 'normal' life.

I knew I was telling the truth, but as usual, no one believed me. The only people who knew I was telling the truth, the boys involved, couldn't have cared less about the hell I was going through; Stephen even came to my house some months later and asked me to have sex with him again! I refused of course, and without his bullying friend Bryan, Stephen was unable to pressurize me into doing so.

The bullying continued for as long as I lived on the Lakes Estate; had I not moved away, no doubt it would continue to this day. The rumours continued to float around - I used to listen to them, but stopped after learning that I had committed suicide. There's no point listening to rumours about myself if I'm dead after all.

When all this was happening, no one would believe the truth or listen to what I was saying.

It is now my time to make the truth known.