Whether it be in school, sports or at the workplace, there is always going to be some sort of asshole who wants nothing more than to make your life miserable. Unfortunately, it’s part of life and just as wolves will always hunt sheep, most people who consider themselves alphas will always want to prey on people who appear to be omegas.
At just twelve years old I had come to realize that high school was very unforgiving to a small, quiet and loner type youth such as myself. I may have been a competitive athlete, but I didn’t associate with the egotistical personalities that the others had among my discipline. Simply put I was super athletic, I excelled at every sport I ever played, but I didn’t care to be part of the cocky and popular social clicks that all my teammates had formed.
Sports and school were two different environments. Grade seven was truly a year from hell, I had become a complete outcast, had zero friends in any of my classes and when I tried to connect with old friends, my teammates rejected me out of jealousy.
I started high-school sitting alone at lunch, eating by myself every single day, there was zero confidence in myself. Weeks went by as an outcast and I quickly became a target. Not only was I verbally abused day to day by jealous, selfish, arrogant, piece of shit coaches and parents associated with my sports team, but I was also beginning to discover that high-school would become a complete nightmare.
I remember the first time I ever felt completely helpless and confused, I was simply walking down a hall to one of my classes. Walking by a group of older kids in the grade above, as I passed them one socked me in the gut with a punch out of nowhere. Never had I spoken to these guys in my life, yet they felt the need to prey on someone as small and helpless as myself. I felt the punch, but I felt my stomach sink even quicker. Legitimately scared and confused I turned around to watch them walk away laughing in their group of three.
Naturally, my mind works fast, I overanalyze and think about every single detail of an incident or task at hand. The rest of that day I couldn’t understand what in the hell had just happened and why it was me who had become the target. It didn't take long before it happened again, and again, and again, each time the abuse gradually worsening. One time I was punched by all three of those same guys, another time they ripped my backpack and threw my notebooks and drawings everywhere, another time they tried to shove me into a locker. I felt as low as I possibly could, no friends, nobody to help me, the teachers sure as hell didn’t and neither did our useless student counselors. I tried walking with groups of students to avoid being hit in the halls, I skipped lunch and went to the library to hide from the assholes in the cafeteria. None of it mattered, the bullying continued.
I went months feeling like a depressed bag of shit until finally, I broke down at home to my parents. I was containing so much anxiety and fear of being bullied every day that I began to stay home sick more frequently. Not much could be done, I spoke to a teacher, nothing was accomplished, I tried to get vocal with the bullies, that was pointless. Honestly, if it wasn’t for my stubborn, relentless, competitive and hidden aggressive attitude, I could see why so many kids battling serious depression and anxiety from being bullied have taken their lives. When there seems to be no fix, nobody who seems to care, nobody who can change the circumstance, what else are they supposed to do?
So I stopped feeling sorry for myself and I made a decision, fighting would have to be the answer. No, violence isn’t always the answer as every damn suburban, cookie-cutter adult would say, but sometimes it is a great fucking last choice. At the same time of all this, my coaches and some of my teammates were also absolute assholes to me. The coaches refused to play me when I succeeded in outshining their children, they were in my face and verbally tried to bewilder on a daily basis. I was told how pathetic, how small, and how irrelevant I was. I was a target in two environments, when the coaches were not around the kids on my team loved to play let’s hide my clothes, chirp me on my appearance, my curved spine from a form of scoliosis that I had, they did anything they could to get in my head.
What nobody knew during all of this was that at the same time, I was learning to box. My dad had me practicing almost every day, training in the basement or at a gym. I learned real basic Jiu-Jitsu chokes, how to strike hard and fast, how to defend myself against multiple people.
Sure enough, the time came to put the skills to the test. One of the kids grabbed and tried to shake me like a piggy bank, I pushed him off and without hesitation cracked him right in the mouth. That was the first time I had ever felt the raw force of my fist against a person's flesh, and it felt amazing.
The bully was completely shocked, as I stepped back with my adrenaline pumping, my fist clenched looking at what I had done, I just took off, leaving the incident as it was. That was the first step I had ever taken into reassuring I would not be fucked with anymore, or simply walked over.
I do not care what anyone thinks, yes it may have gone much differently as an adult, maybe it may have led to further problems. In life, there is only so much bullshit I want to take from other people whether I am 12, 22 or 52. I believe being vocal is a great first option, but if I try that multiple times and it still isn't working, you better believe I will rely on my physical capabilities to get the message across.
Over the next few months in high school the bullies eventually got the message, I choked out one nearly unconscious, another I fought outside of school. Eventually, I earned my space, but it wouldn't completely give me my freedom.
As I matured throughout high school and into university I became the type of person who just stopped giving a fuck as to what anyone thought about me. This phase started at 17 and molded me into who I am now.
To Be Continued...
Part 2, I will talk about my experiences with asshole adults and how to deal with them properly without letting them control or get the best of you. Maturing into a 17-year-old who began to develop the "take no shit" mentality, fullybreaking out of my shell at 20 and forcing myself into the business world. My experiences with powerlifting, Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, and Combat Sports. How to start doing the things YOU want to do, blocking out the noise and moving past the bullshit.
Stay Tuned, Stay Savage!