Dear Phone…let’s talk about bullying in middle school

Dear Phone,

Howdy again! Don’t worry, I’m never going to say howdy ever again. I was really just testing out the word to see if it worked for me and it didn’t. Anyways, it’s like 4 am and it’s hotter than balls here. I’m unable to sleep. Since it feels like I’m in hell, I thought that I would share my the rest of my story before college. Let’s talk about middle school and how it made me want to cry every day of my life. And for the sake of time, let’s just throw elementary school in there too because it wasn’t all of the elementary school years but rather the last two years, fourth and fifth grade. In some cultures, that apart of middle school. So let’s talk about fourth through eighth grade. I’m already regretting this. Oh, If you missed me getting PTSD reliving my time in high school, click here to read.

These years is probably when the bulk of bullying happened. I really didn’t know that I was getting gay bashed until I started to think about it all. Middle school was the worst part of anyone school experience, let alone when you are pretty much trying to figure out who you are. It’s awkward because you are awkward. You are in the between stage. It’s pretty much like you are in the upside down. No one really prepares you for what happens to your body anymore in middle school. It’s a taboo subject like talking about how babies come out of vaginas and how they got in there in the first place.

I first started getting bullied badly within the first month of fourth grade. I decided to be bold and not chase girls but rather help the girls chase the boys. I don’t remember my reasoning for this but it probably has to do with I probably with I just enjoyed them more. I didn’t want to date them. Well, my classmates decided that this was a declaration that I was gay. I really only had four key friends during this and they pretty much turned on me once we got to fifth grade due to we were in the same class anymore. Don’t worry, it will get slightly happier. I was pretty much socially lost during the last years of elementary school and all of middle school. Can you believe this was all because I wanted to hang out with girls?

I got all the verbal abuse one could want. It was during these years that I learned all of the slurs you would call someone who is gay. Fag. Faggot. Flamer. Queer. Fairy. A girl even called me a “Faggot Fairy” as she skipped around me with a clique. The joke was really on her. If she had a gay friend, they probably would have told her that her makeup was too much and that maybe she shouldn’t have stuffed her so much that you could see the tissue #SorrynotSorry. Anyway, I just really dealt with it. I would defend my sexuality but it was really pointless. It was to the point to where I was nice to people still and they would just talk shit on me and gay bash me. I was getting gay bashed at the age of 10 when I had no clue if I was gay or not.

I had crushes on girls during this time. I wanted/had a few girlfriends at this point. It was more than likely just me wanted to “fit in.” I really didn’t start to question my sexuality until like late seventh grade and into eighth grade. Even then, it wasn’t anything serious. I actually had a girlfriend break up with me and pretty much gay bash me at the same time. And to answer the elephant in the room, I’m a gold star gay. My last girlfriend was my senior year of high school. It was a horrible decision. It was so bad that I haven’t been able to date a girl since.

I absolutely dreaded going to school. I would actually fake sick just to avoid all of this. Could you really blame me? Would you want to go to a school where I was constantly being bashed? It was really like they were trying to “scare away the gay.” It was here where the guidance counselor I mentioned in my high school years came into play. She started to stick up for me and actually try to stop it. I really don’t think she knows how much she helped make my experience better.

This is the slightly happy part of the story. I did get friends that would stand up for me. It was full on acceptance too. Like they would defend me and then go “and what does it even matter if he was or wasn’t?” At the time, I didn’t appreciate but now I do. But it was more so than anyone did before. It’s just sad that these would be the friends that would a couple of years later turn on me. I really had only like two of them left.

As an adult, the fact that I was gay bashed for over 10 years in school in front of teachers and faculty is something that is definitely uncalled for. It’s not kids just being kids. It’s a look at society and culture. Comedian Sarah Silverman tweeted an article where it asked: “how we can prevent young people from fleeing small cities?” Her response was “accept them exactly as they are?” It’s absolutely true. I live in a small village that used to be a city. If I didn’t spend 10 years getting hate sprew at me because they thought they could “scare away the gay,” then maybe I would want to stay it. I’m triggered now and I don’t want to go into a rant about why it’s unacceptable for a 10-year-old to be getting gay bashed.

On that note, Thank you for listening again. This is pretty much like therapy because pre-college has really fucked me up if you couldn’t tell already.

Yours Truly,

Steven Kaufman

P.S. Since we are now dating, make sure you follow me on Twitter and Instagram. I’m like the social media mogul version of Tinkerbell. Just instead of people believing I exist, I need those follows to live.


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