The Truth Lied Beneath the Rumors | Teen Ink

The Truth Lied Beneath the Rumors

August 27, 2019
By Reagan0703 SILVER, Bakersfield, California
Reagan0703 SILVER, Bakersfield, California
7 articles 0 photos 1 comment

"She's so weird." 

"I know right, she's just sitting there all alone in the corner. She's not even sitting at a lunch table, like who does that?" 

I knew the girl they were talking about could definitely hear them and so could the rest of the lunchroom but no one did anything. It seemed as if nobody cared, but I knew better. It's not that no one cared it's that no one wants to be their next target. Over the past few weeks, I had heard them say over 100 things about her. They'd tell people things like, I heard she thinks she's a witch, but I guess that would explain how she dresses. Then they'd giggle quietly so our teacher wouldn't hear them. The people they told these things to would also laugh not because they wanted to but because if they didn't then things could just turn on them. That's how our school seemed to work if you didn't go along with the crowd than you would be their next target. It felt inescapable like you're in a locked room and the key is never in reach. The girl would usually just sag her shoulders when they laughed and would look down. 

That's when I noticed just how bad this was getting. More students were in fear that they would be next. For once I held my head up and looked around the hall. Most of the kids had their heads down eyes fixed on the floor as if they wanted to disappear. 

Weeks and weeks went by and nothing changed. It felt like everything just fell into a routine, day after day they would laugh at the girl and spread terrible rumors. No one would talk to her no one would help her they were too scared of what would happen.

And then one day she was gone. 

"She unexpectedly transferred to a different school." That's all our teacher told us. I was so angry that no one would help her but then I realized that didn't help her. I wasn't any better than any of my other classmates that watched silently as it happened. Instead of helping that girl like I should of I just watched. And yes I was scared of what would happen if I did say something but still that isn't an excuse to not do anything. Bullying is a serious issue and there is no reason why you shouldn't do anything about it. If you're scared that if you say something that you'll be their next victim then you can still tell your teacher or another adult. 

A few years later I saw the girl from class again but she looked different. She was smiling and laughing with a few other girls. I approached them and told her who I was and that we had gone to the same elementary school. She said she remembered me and then explained something to me that I never would have known if she hadn't told me. 

That year that those girls had been bullying her she had just lost her older brother. We never know what is happening in other peoples lives but there's always a way we can make it better. If you ever see anyone being bullied then speak up or do something about it and if you're being bullied remember there's always someone you can talk to.    

The author's comments:

This is dedicated to that girl from the cafeteria who helped me realize so many things that have been so helpful over the years.

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