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Peer Pressure and Bullying Social pressure can take many different forms, including intimidation, bullying and even physical attacks. If you feel you could be a victim or perpetrator (who wishes to stop) of bullying, talk about it here.

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Regretting Ex-Bully
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Confessions of a bully - February 6th 2010, 07:36 AM

Sorry, this is going to be long because it is hard to tell, let alone in a few words...

I will not deny it - people have a right to know what I have done...how cruel I have been to someone who absolutely did not deserve this and how many times I have hurt him so deeply that he will possibly never fully get over it although I would now do anything for him he wants to make atonement - but I know even that will never be enough. I endlessly regret it now and I will for the rest of my life mourn it and feel absolutely sorry. I blame no-one who despises me because of what I have done or wishes that I will never again be happy in my life or that something really bad will happen to me. I cannot blame anyone because I actually despise and hate myself because of it.

There was NO reason, justification or excuse for bullying someone in the ways I did - there never is. All I can say is that I tried and am still trying so very hard to repair at least a part of the damage and suffering that I have caused. I will share the story of my past that continues to the present in the hope that a few bullies who are still tormenting those they perceive as weak might learn something from it, that they stop it forever and repent and that they realize how remorselessly they are every day destroying more and more of their victims life, which is a terrible crime. And for what? The bullies gain no benefit, instead they slowly destroy their own soul as well. It is insane to expect people to like you while you are tormenting others.

Victims or former victims may also be interested in reading this because among other information from the perspective of a (former) bully I will try to explain why in most cases the bully is actually the weak one and the victim the far stronger one despite the fact that it might seem the other way around.

This is only the introduction, for I cannot write everything in one session. I must tell you what I did to my victim, how I hurt him so bad for such a long time, every day physically AND emotionally. I was not the only one - but I was the only one to concentrate all his "efforts" exclusively on him. I must tell you how I slowly came to regret what I had done. And how I falsely believed it would be enough to show that I was really sorry and to protect him from the other bullies to gain his forgiveness. How could I ever believe that a few good deeds, no matter how well the intent was, could make up for even 3 days of what he had suffered, let alone more than a year. How I was an idiot in pressing him so hard, telling him that I had deserved forgiveness when that was the last thing I deserved and when the last thing he wanted to do was talk about what I had done to him and constantly being remembered about his suffering, that he finally snapped. He lost control and strangled me with extreme force, me being paralyzed by shock when I saw the utter brutality and lust for murder in his eyes, my only thought being: "So now I will really pay for everything". He continued his attempt to choke me to death without mercy. I passed out for what must have been several minutes. When I became conscious again I felt two things: Sharp pain in my throat and some pressure on my chest. It took me a few moments before I realized that his upper body was lying over my chest while he was kneeing on the ground and his face buried in my shirt. While I was still to weak to say anything or move in any way he was crying his eyes out and repeatedly sobbing something along the lines of how sorry he was about killing me and that he never had intended it. When I finally regained the use of my voice it took me several attempts of saying that I was OK apart from some bad throat pain until he looked up to see who was talking - for he had really believed I was dead. Is that really what you want, bullies? Hurting someone so deep and irreversibly that they actually want you DEAD?
How we finally slowly managed to make peace with each other after all that had happened will be the content of the last chapter. I think it will be along the following lines:

4 short chapters:
1. Hurting without remorse
2. Slowly beginning to regret
3. Totally botched efforts to make amends
4. Peace and healing, at last
   
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Re: Confessions of a bully - February 6th 2010, 09:18 AM

hmm, This happens to alot of bullies, its the first time when a victim trully lashes out in anger and rage. Alot of bullies, start to see clearly when this happens. They can see the true error of there ways. and to finally see what you've done after so much time bullying.

I can't even begin to imagine the guilt your going through. We can't change the past, but we can change the future. I look forward to the next chapter.


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Re: Confessions of a bully - February 6th 2010, 09:29 AM

I am glad that you are interested in hearing my story.
And you are right - nothing can change the past...
   
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Re: Confessions of a bully - February 6th 2010, 05:23 PM

True, nothing can change the past but you can make up for it. You know those guys who you bullied. Have you apologized to them ? Have you tried to befriend them ?

Once again, nothing can change the past but you can make up for it and it can be forgotten.
   
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Re: Confessions of a bully - February 7th 2010, 11:18 PM

@ Jacksonian

Well, I apologized several times. At first it was not received well at all - but now we are gradually working things out, being whole-heartedly forgiven is my goal.
You mentioned forgetting...I think neither victims nor perpetrators will ever be able to really forget the sad past - instead, I believe , it is possible to reach a state of not having it on your mind everyday.
As for befriending, I am really trying that as well. At first it did not seem to go anywhere but for about two weeks now there seems to be real progress.
   
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Re: Confessions of a bully - February 10th 2010, 06:15 AM

I have realized that my original plan of writing 4 really short chapters is not workable because of the great amount of information my story will contain. Thus, I have decided to write one really long chapter (this one) and then 2 much shorter ones. Time to start. This chapter was hard to write and may not be easy to read for some people who have been made to suffer in the same way in which I caused others to suffer...

Chapter 1 - Hurting others without remorse

Time, location and circumstances: It all started approximately 2 years ago when I was 14 years old (Since January I am 16). Although my mother is an English woman, she emigrated together with her parents to Germany when she was 13 years of age. I myself was born here in Germany. While I have been told that the extent of my English vocabulary and my pronunciation equal those of a native speaker, I am aware of the fact that my grammar/syntax is sometimes still less than perfect.

Fortunately, I can state that I had never been the target of any physical violence. Not at school and not anywhere else. As for being called names and other kinds of mental bullying, there was nothing serious either. Just like every kid I was teased a few times - but that was something you would completely forget one or two hours later. Now you might wonder: Why did *I* suddenly become a bully at the age of 14? As for the reasons, I might analyze them in another thread. Lets just say I was less than happy, actually quite angry about several things in my life at the time. After 4 years of primary education, when I was 10 years old, it was time to change to another school for form 5 (in Germany, 99% of schools, like mine, are public schools, including many very good ones). I quickly made some friends at the new school. After form 8 was over, the composition of the classes was reorganized and the 90 people of my age group were allocated into 3 newly formed classes that were to exist from form 9 to 11 (the full education here in Germany consists of visiting school for 13 years instead of the 12 years that are the norm in most other industrial nations. Additionally, school here starts when you are 6 years old and not when you are only 5. Both of those facts combined mean that you will have finished school usually at the age of 19 and not at 17 or 18). I - like everybody else- had to decide whether to concentrate in forms 9 to 13 on a)German, Latin and English b)Maths and sciences or c)Music and arts. I decided to concentrate on the languages because to me reading literature and performing creative writing are far more interesting than maths or music.

The total reorganization of the classes meant, of course, that you were thrown into a totally new social structure. Most of the people I knew were now in another class and I was suddenly together with many people I did not know at all. After about 6 months, I had largely managed to come to terms with this new situation and had made a few new acquaintances. Unfortunately, by this time I had also become angry about a few things and had slowly, in a way without noticing it, started bullying others. At first this consisted only of constantly harassing people by pointing out their weaknesses and imperfections to themselves and to others in a way that made me seem superior. With time this increased to serious insults thrown at those who did not know how to defend themselves. Then I started physically pushing people around. Whenever I was angry, and very often also when I was not, I would push people out of the way. Then I started pushing those who were to scared to retaliate down to the ground or out of their chairs. But I quickly settled on shoving or even slamming people into nearby walls. This caused less unwanted attention than people falling to the ground.

There was no shortage of victims. However, there were two other bullies in my class who were just as merciless as me (a few other people were also bullying others but they did it on a rare basis and were often victims as well as perpetrators). I will call those two F and T - that are their initials. Each of us three was in one way or another aspiring to become the leader of the entire class. After bullying each other in a three-way conflict for a short time, we all must have recognized that this was not going anywhere anytime soon. So we decided to stick together and pick only on others. There was no conscious effort behind this, we did not make a formal alliance or anything, it just happened.

As I said, this was about 6 months after form 9 had started. When several pupils wanted to reorganize the seating arrangements in our class room because they had a problem with one person or another, I joined them. It was OK to be "friends" with F and T (as far as a friendship between bullies can go...) outside of lessons when we could have "fun" together by picking on others, however inside the classroom T was jarring my nerves, constantly bugging me with totally unimportant things. With F on the other hand I had no problem at all. He was my best friend. F was sitting to my right and T to my left. It was time to get rid of T. And I managed to do that. The new boy who had inherited Tīs place to my left was called Lukas (he will be mentioned as L from now on). He was really smart and handsome but not popular as he was also a really quiet kid. He was avoiding others, and apart from a few very superficial relationshsips he seemed to have no real friends (at least not in school), making him a real loner.

Maybe he had decided that the new seating arrangement was also a chance to make new friends. He tried to befriend me and F by initiaing conversations. Bad idea. He was also everyday on the same bus that I used to get to school and back home. So he decided to accompany me for the way back home as well. Again: Bad idea.

Just a few days after he had approached me and F with a sincere offer of friendship I decided it would be far more interesting to see and feel the excitement of making him suffer rather than having him as a "boring" friend. So I started picking on him. He was really patient at first and still wanted to be friends with me. He probably believed that I was prone to burst of a very short temper and not a consciouss bully. A serious misinterpretation. But even he finally realized that I was intentionally hurting and harming him. I (as well as F and T) did no longer call him by his first name but by several "honourary titles" like "idiot", "wimp", "piece of trash", "weakling" and much worse. For a few days he always sat down next to me in the bus, but after he had understood that I was an enemy, he was trying to get as far away as possible (sitting next to me in class was already enough for him). Not that it did him much good. I could always change places to a position near him. Preferably directly behind him - for from that position I could not only yell insults at him and ridicule him but also pull at his hair. That was not the only painful experience. I could poke him into the neck or his back with the tip of a pencil (not so hard that he would bleed - but still painful and very annoying). Whenever he got angry and turned around to face me and plead with me to stop, I would either hit him in the face so that he had no choice but to change location again. Or I would scream at him in a way that was audible throughout the entire bus something like: "L, stop hurting me! You are a f***ing bully!!!". That would always intimidate him and it made him look bad instead of me. L was also introduced to the "joys" of being forcibly pushed out of your chair and being slammed against a wall.

To hurt him even more I pretended after some time for a while that I was really sorry about what I had done to him. Just as he was getting ready to think again that we might perhaps still become friends, I decided it was the right time to pick on him even worse...
When I was with him, sitting on a bench in a park next to our school (we are not allowed to leave the school premises during recess - but just about everyone does it anyways), chatting in a civilized manner, we saw my friend F approaching us. When I saw that he was very angry for some reason, I thought only: "This could be interesting". L tried to get up and away but I gently held him back, promising him that I would not let the bully hurt him this time. However, my real intentions were very different...
F yelled at the victim: "Get up you fool! How dare you sit down on my bench!". L was obviously believing me that I would back him up, so he replied in a calm manner: "As far as I know this bench is for everyone. Isnīt this a public park?". F yelled back even angrier: "Ah, you try to be smart. But not with me! Get the hell away from here before I break one of your arms. No, wait - it is time for you to finally learn a lesson about respect." I smiled at F and said: "You are right. Time to teach L a lesson!". L was visibly shocked when he heard me say this. "But you made a promise!", he said without much hope. "Ah, yes, you are right, that creates a small problem. But wait, I only promised that I would not let him hurt you this time. I did not say anything about myself not hurting you. See? Problem solved!" My bully "friend" burst out in laughter - but you can imagine how L must have felt after he had realized that he had been betrayed again. Letīs just say that F did indeed not hurt him on that day - he only held him in position and laughed in his face while I was beating him. He ended up with quite some bruises, fleeing with tears in his eyes after we were finished with him. Now you might understand why he could not trust me when I promised him after I had decided to stop bullying that I would never hurt him again and that I would protect him from other bullies.

After this it got only worse for him. While I was an active bully for a total of almost 2 years, for the last year and a half I decided it was "reasonable" to bully only L. For it would create much more pain if I threw all my anger at a single victim. And it would dramatically reduce the likelihood of me getting in trouble. F and T were bullying him as well, but they both had several other victims as well, so for L I must have appeared as the worst bully out of us three. L had no happy day in school for a long time. I was hurting him every single day, physically and mentally. Well, there were a few exceptions. Very few. When our school class traveled to the coast far to the north for the duration of one week, staying at a youth hostel, I believe even L was having a good time. I had decided that such a journey was meant to be fun and i entirely abstained from bullying him for this one week. I also convinced F and T to give him a break for those 7 days, and because they considered him to be "my" victim they just bullied a few other kids. However, as soon as the voyage was over and we were back at school, everything was back to normal.

The only other time when I wanted to give L a break was when I walked through the corridors one day and saw some bystanders looking anxiously at a locker. When I came closer, I was told what was going on: F and T had beaten L (as always, for no reason whatsoever) and when he - for the first time - threatened to get the teachers involved they had decided to imprison him in a locker. It was extremely tight in there and he had been imprisoned for 20 minutes already. He was desperately screaming. He believed he was running out of oxygen. I pushed T, who was holding the locker door closed shut, out of the way and opened the locker. I told L he could come out now. I yelled at F and T that they were getting themselves as well as myself in trouble with stuff like this. Then I escorted L to safety and stayed with him until he had somewhat calmed down - for he had suffered a real panic attack.

The very next day however, I decided that because I had assisted him this one time, I was now in a twisted way entitled to take the bullying to an even crueller level. I increased the amount of physical force as well as the emotional pressure. I also started to force L to hand over his lunch money. At first he resisted. But not for long when I threatened to beat him up again if he resisted any longer. This ocurred usually once or twice a week. Then F started to do the same to L on some other days. L stayed outside without anything to eat while the others went to the canteen. He usually had the company of one or two other people who had been robbed of their lunch money as well by someone. But that does not make it any better. After lunch we always have only one additional lesson before we can go home. That does not make it any better either.

I also started spreading mean rumours about Līs parents to hurt him even more. Today I know that they are really great and nice people - just like L himself - but back then L must have really been in pain because of this. I told a few people that I had witnessed something that proved that Līs mother was a prostitute. F and T joined me in spreading these rumours. F claimed that Līs mother was a lesbian. Now that in itself would not have made her a bad person in any way - but the two rumours got somehow mixed up and people were telling each other that she was a lesbian prostitute. T spread the terrible lie that Līs father was a convicted rapist. Fortunately two months ago I was able to set the record straight with the help of my friend F (who stopped being an active bully a short time after I did so that we might remain friends - T on the other hand is still a very cruel bully and we have no longer anything to do with him). We confessed to everyone that the rumours had been nothing but lies we had made up. Finally the rumours died down.

Another mean thing I did was when I grabbed Līs booklet with the homework for math and I wrote down in imitation of his hand writing a few wrong results after I had erased his original work. When he presented his results in front of the class he looked like a total idiot because every single result was wrong. Fortunately this did not affect his grades - at the end of the year he got his usual A in math.

One day I encountered F and T in the park outside school while they were kicking L who was already lying on the ground. I did not join them and quietly walked away. I just shrugged and thought: "Why do they go to such lenghts? I would not do that. Far too much effort involved. I would just slam him against the wall again and again." That was really the way I was thinking back then. *Extreme* physical violence was not part of my arsenal. Instead I relied on the constant use of moderate to strong violence. Never extreme force that could result in permanent *physical* damage. Bad bruising: Yes. Broken bones: No. And I actually was stupid enough to tell myself that because of this restrictions I put on myself I was a "nobler" person than the other bullies. So much for physical bullying. As in regard to extorting lunch money, the worst thing about it was that I did not need this money at all. I had my own lunch money with me every day. I actually collected everything I extorted in a metal box in my room. I did not spend a single coin of it on anything. When somebody commits a crime, it is in any case morally wrong. But when there is a *rational* reason, one can at least understand the motivation behind it. If a person that might actually starve, steals some food from a shop, this is understandable. But why would a person that had more than enough food already, start stealing from the same shop?

One day - about 3 months ago - I had taken his lunch money again and was sitting in the canteen. Through the window I could see him sitting outside on a bench in the cold (it was November). He was visibly downhearted and started actually crying. I myself was not happy on that day either - but seeing him like this did for the first time touch my heart in a strange way. I was lost in deep thoughts - I entered a dreamlike state. The canteen and my friends vanished from my mind. Only two images remained: Me, sitting inside and eating, and him, sitting outside in the cold and having nothing to eat. I suddenly lost all appetite and pushed the tablet with the remaining food out of the way. I put the soda can which I had not opened yet, into my bag and made up some excuse to my friends why I had to leave. I went outside and slowly approached him. I was very nervous. He showed no visible reaction but it was obvious that he had been crying. I managed to stammer something like: "Um, listen...I...I did not mean to hurt you. It was...it was...only a prank!". Some kind of prank! He still did not react in any way and I felt extremely uncomfortable standing in front of him. So I quickly put the money I had extorted as well as the unopened soda can next to him onto the bench he was sitting on and said: "Here, take these." Then I fled from the scene. From some distance I could see that he had picked up the things I had placed next to him. He was now entering the canteen. I was slightly relieved, for a moment even happy, because I had done the right thing, even if it was just this one time. But this was also the exact point in time when I began to question the whole direction of my life, the exact point where I started to regret what I had done so many times...

The next chapter will be: Chapter 2 - Beginning to regret and botched attempts to make amends



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Re: Confessions of a bully - February 13th 2010, 08:16 PM

Hello there Aidan. Well done for noticing. Keep going and helping those who you hurt. Oh and also, i too have seen bullying which hurts one. And you are correct in thinking that one will not have it on their mind everyday. The amount of time to forget will depend on the severity. But what you are doing is a very important step in helping those who you hurt forget. But even though some may not forget those whom you apologize to will look back at the past and it will no longer be sad because of what you have now done.

As for the story, i too can see why it is very hard for L to forgive you. But remember, it will take time and you must do all that you can to help him. Well done for doing the right thing. But don't flee the scene again, because if you don't depending on how he is at the moment, it will go a very very long way in healing his heart(This you must already know).

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Re: Confessions of a bully - February 13th 2010, 08:35 PM

Thank you for your support Jacksonian! You are right, the most important thing is to do everything in my power to aid him with healing. Of course, I have given him all the money back which I have extorted - but that is in no way enough to atone for what I did. In the last two weeks some incredible things that make me very happy have happened (I will tell about it in the last chapter). He cannot forgive me yet but he is not shunning me. He has not abandoned me. He told me he does not hate me. He even chose to keep his place next to me in the classroom. He is the kindest and most magnanimous person I have ever encountered, and that makes the guilt I feel all the more painful because I hurt HIM out of all people. He is very dear and very important to me. He always was - I only wish I had realized that 2 years ago.


A quiet conscience is invaluable. Do not relinquish it carelessly. I know how terrible it hurts when you constantly have a guilty conscience because of your past actions...

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Re: Confessions of a bully - February 13th 2010, 08:48 PM

Hey Aidan!
I've noticed you posting alot recently, and I'd just like to mention how great it is to see someone trying to make up for things they've done. Nobody is perfect, and it does take alot of courage to admit to your mistakes, especially when they can have quite severe consequence. Keep posting


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Re: Confessions of a bully - February 15th 2010, 08:47 PM

Well done Aidan. And you are welcome. I look forward to reading your next chapter.
   
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