Growing up in the western suburbs of Sydney, I attended Our Lady of Mount Carmel in Mount Pritchard. This school had a good mix of nationalities, but there weren’t many Asians. I was this nice, kind, gentle short little Asian kid with chongy eyes (still haven’t grown much).
As Anti-Bullying programs weren’t what that are today, I was easy target for bullying. I was called things such as:
This went on for a while, and no one would stick up for me either. I was too scared of going to the teachers or to my parents.
Until one day I decided to stick up for myself. I love Al Capone’s quote of “Don’t mistake my kindness for weakness”, as that was me from this point on. The nice, kind, gentle short little Asian kid, was no more. I got into fights quite regularly, that it became normal to me.
By the time I hit high school, I felt well-seasoned to take on all the bullies, that I was afraid I would become one. During my first few weeks of high school, I witness someone get bullied (still one of my good mates today). From that point on, I knew exactly which side I wanted to be on… The victim’s side, sticking up for them, as I knew how it felt not having anyone stick up for me.
I’m so glad I was able to overcome this stage of my life, as I know the effects of bullying can follow a child to adulthood, and can even lead to suicide. I was so fortunate that bullying didn’t negatively affect me. If anything, I must say it positively affected me. I’m a firm believer of a line I often hear from Aaron Sansoni, “Things happen FOR me, not TO me”.
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