I Was A School Bully –
By Andres Torres of PCMS
My name is Jared Wells, and I was a school bully. I was the meanest around, with all the other bullies afraid to be within five feet of me. I would be in the principal’s office every other day, for one reason or another, despite being a bright student. I used to be that way until, well, one of my victims committed suicide.
It was my junior year of high school, halfway through the second semester. I was sitting in my homeroom class with my two best “friends” (more like lackeys) when the principal walks in with a new student. “This is our newest student, Miss Kona Li,” proclaims the principal, “She will be in this homeroom.” With that, he strode out of the room into the hall and disappeared. Once he left the room I started making faces at the new girl, trying to get other people to laugh; it had the desired effect (sadly). At lunch, I made jokes about her nationality (she was Chinese) and eventually she left the lunch room early.
This kind of behavior lasted for several weeks at least, non-stop, always cracking a joke or insult at her. Then, one morning, it all changed. I come to school, expectantly waiting for my latest victim, but she did not come. Even when the late bell rung, she never showed up. You see, Kona Li always showed up early (later than me, of course) and would sit down to finish whatever she didn’t finish last night (which was next to nothing). I hazarded a guess that she was just sick, and I waited. For several days, I patiently waited. Nothing happened. I finally decided to go to the principal to ask why she was gone. He looked at me with an expression that appeared halfway between anger and despair. There was a great period of silence. “She’s dead,” he said at last, “she committed suicide several days ago.” It was like I got hit by a truck; it was my fault.
After that, I pointedly told my “friends” that I would not bully a single person again. Kona Li’s suicide hung over me so much that I could not sleep at night. I finally decided to go on a crusade to stop bullying, or else another person would commit suicide. I organized a statewide trip to speak about my actions, and how I ruined Kona Li’s life. I told thousands of students to not be like me: to not bully.