I got bullied. – By @alfsuit
By Alfie Souter
I got bullied.
Who gets bullied at 20? I asked myself this for a long time. I got bullied at 20. I think it’s important for me to say this. For a long time I was in denial. I wasn’t bullied they were just mean I said. I wasn’t bullied we just didn’t get along. I got bullied let’s not beat around the bush. I told my friend recently and it was the first time he had heard. For me it’s important not to be embarrassed anymore. Though I didn’t help myself. I didn’t deserve the treatment I got.
For a time afterwards I wasn’t angry. And I realise now it’s because I thought I deserved it. It started I think in first year. I liked my friends but still an insecure teen I wanted to hang out with the ‘cool’ kids. And I thought these guys were cool. I was accepted by them and I thought I had finally made it into two groups of friends. I’m definitely cool now.
In second year I ended up going to their house every day. Wishing I lived there. And I overstayed my welcome. I acted in a way I thought they wanted me to act. I realised they didn’t like me very much around Easter time. I wasn’t invited out anymore or welcomed into their house. We played a game that can be used to mock each other. It’s basically comprised of a question on the screen and the anonymous answer on your phone of whatever you want. It would always be harsh or derogatory to someone in the room. And after a time the jokes were always on me. But I thought it was okay because we were all friends.
In my last year I moved in with these people. When I tell other people about what happened they always ask why? For me it’s because I was ecstatic. I was delirious on the fact that these ‘cool’ guys had asked me to live with them. After the first year of struggling to find someone to live with this was very validating.
After the end of second year however I realised they didn’t like me. But I hoped and believed that this had changed in third year of uni. Around November I realised it hadn’t. They had a group chat without me in.
From then on I was bitter and aggravating towards them. Not to make excuses for them but I was not a good housemate. I tried to antagonise them. I wanted them to fight me instead of them bitching behind my back. After months of resentment on both sides I wanted to end the year on a positive note. Maybe they weren’t my friends but at least we could have a good time together while we all finished uni.
They couldn’t even give me that.
After a festival we all went to I asked for one of their phones, so I could see the photos they had taken. I was drawn to the group chat I knew I wasn’t included in because of a conversation with one of them where we discussed how I was ostracised from the group. I knew most of them had heard what was said so I went back to that day. From my memory the conversation went like this:
Silas: What was Alfie talking about us last night? sounds like he thinks we are all cunts.
Saj: I was just saying he doesn’t have to worry about us liking him anymore
Tim: Why is this conversation even being had? It’s the end of uni this guy needs to let things go
Ed: Ginger cunt.
Ishaan: lol harsh
I can’t remember beyond this.
I do remember scrolling back though seeing how long it went on for.
Messages like this met me:
Fraser: Who’s up for drinks?
Nathan: Alfie is
Fraser: Drinks are off then
It went on and on until I felt shell-shocked. I left the afters without a word, a silent goodbye for the last time. I went home and smoked weed knowing I wouldn’t be able to sleep otherwise.
I woke up the next day and realised eventually I couldn’t be in Nottingham anymore. I considered cleaning my share of the house for these cunts luckily I decided on just going. I left and said I would come back pretending everything was fine.
That was my state of being for the next 6 months. Pretending I was fine. I stopped working and I was depressed, I felt lost. I got into SCA but that only proved temporary relief. I went travelling and the self criticism reached new heights. It took me an hour or more to pack my backpack for the beach because I was so afraid of getting it wrong. I spent the whole time thinking I wasn’t interesting doubting my value to even one of my best friends.
I thought I had recovered afterwards but as I have said before in other SCABS and if you have been an avid reader what a journey eh? Marc made me realise I still hadn’t recovered from this experience and I was still letting it affect me. I stupidly bought into this idea it was character building. Look at how strong I am now I thought. Nothing upsets me. No one can make me doubt myself. But I realised I had become weaker than I ever had been. And I have said before its being vulnerable, kind and understanding is what’s really hard. It take strength to cry in front of people, it takes strength to sympathise and its really really fucking hard to tell someone when they ask that you aren’t okay.
I really don’t want the reader, if you have pushed on through these hundreds of words of self pity, to misconstrued my intentions. I don’t want sympathy or a pat on the back. I just want to put this truth out there to prove to myself I am not hiding from it anymore. It happened and I need to move on.