Bullies and Bibles

Posted: February 14, 2011 in childhood, rape

A couple of things have been on my mind this week. First off, bullies. Someone from high school that I didn’t really know very well added me on facebook a while back…I didn’t think much of it at the time, but it opened a Pandora’s box of add requests from people who I either haven’t spoken to in about a decade, or never really liked much in the first place. Some of the people who have been requesting to friend me I actually haven’t seen since elementary or middle school. Some of them I don’t feel much of anything about – I’m indifferent or ambivalent. Whichever comes first. Some of them I barely remember. Others were downright mean.

I don’t understand what would possess someone who absolutely hated me and spent the better part of their formative years making mine miserable to attempt to befriend me on facebook. I understand the curiosity of wanting to see what people are up to that you haven’t seen since they were eight…but it’s sort of the ultimate slap in the face to ask to friend someone you spent years tormenting. Most of the time I approve the requests just long enough to see what these people are doing, and then immediately delete them. I’m pretty comfortable with what I’ve accomplished in the last eight years. I don’t need the vindication of having these people, most of whom are still living in the same little town, working at the same dead end jobs, and spending time with the same closed-minded losers, see what I’ve managed to do with my life.

What bothers me more is that some of these people are friends with people who happen to be friends with the guy who raped me…hence his ability to find me. Easily. That was a good wake up call, and motivation to revisit the people I’m friends with on facebook. It took me a couple of days to mentally prepare myself for me…I guess because I wasn’t looking forward to having to go through and revisit those parts of my life. I finally did though, and it was very liberating. I deleted everyone I wasn’t really friends with; everyone I don’t really have any desire to ever talk to again; everyone who was friends with people who fall into the latter category. Or with the rapist. It sort of bothers me that he considers himself human enough to be on facebook…

On another note, I’ve been getting lots of ads from people that I used to go to church with. What’s funny to me is that when I was growing up, I was ostracized by these people for not being a “good girl.” Back then, because that was all I knew, it never really occurred to me that something was wrong with the big picture: I may have been a “bad girl” by some standards, but no one ever took into account the way my parents acted. No one ever seemed to question the way they responded to situations, or the impact that might have had on their kids.

When I was maybe five or six, I wanted desperately to be a “good girl.” I understood the concept of other kids helping with chores around the house and getting an allowance for it, so I made up a chart of chores I could do and how much I thought my parents should “pay” me for it. I don’t remember specifics, but I think most things were about a quarter. I remember working very hard for a five year old…doing dishes, folding towels, picking up my room, clearing the dinner table. I don’t think I ever received an allowance. And after a while, somewhere in my subconscious I became aware of the fact that no matter how much I did, the house was never going to get clean. It wasn’t even going to get any better. I didn’t understand the situation, but I know that even at such an early age, I already had the helpless feeling of knowing somehow that it wasn’t going to get any better. I always hoped that it would…but I also had the ingrained disappointment of knowing somehow that my parents wouldn’t change. They still haven’t.

Sometimes I wonder how much these people I went to middle school and high school with have changed. It’s a little incomprehensible to me on some level that they have normal lives…like karma never caught up with them. One girl used to pull my hair and push me around almost every day. Sometimes she hit me. Once she punched me in the face in the middle of class in the fifth grade. The teacher didn’t do anything to stop her. As far as I know, she never changed. It doesn’t seem fair.

Most of the people I went to church with were nicer to me, but they still didn’t like me. They didn’t want to spend time with me because I was a “bad girl” and they (or their parents) seemed to be afraid my badness would rub off. No matter how hard I tried, I just couldn’t seem to manage to be good. I wanted to. I didn’t understand that I couldn’t change because I didn’t have control of the situation. My parents did. And it was too much responsibility to ever put on a child. They still don’t understand why.

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