When I first went to secondary school I was in top sets for Maths, English and Science. In my first year I was a hardworking student along with my friends Andrew and Stephen. I remember winning cinema tickets for being the top student in my year. My brother and I went to the cinema to watch the movie, Twister. That was the first time I had been to the cinema and I thoroughly enjoyed it.
However, due to peer pressure I began to be lazy and eventually stopped caring about studying. I wanted to be part of the gang who flaunted rules and disrespected the teachers. I would regularly skip classes and my attendance was poor. I still read books but I lost interest in Maths and Science. My English teacher was great and I still enjoyed writing.
There were occasional fights and arguments at the school but in general everyone got along. My two friends from primary school were also there. We used to travel to and from school in a van. The driver was eccentric and decorated his van with tinsel and little bells.
There was one person at school called H who was mercilessly bullied day in and day out. Every break and dinner time a gang of twenty boys would tease him and laugh at him. They would constantly joke about him in class too. The poor guy faced this throughout the five years in secondary school. Now that I look back to this time, I realise he was actually one of the most decent persons in the school.
They teased him for his bad breath, they teased him about how he spoke, they teased him for his looks, it was relentless and cruel. I never joined in with the psychological torture they put him through. I used to see the bullying and grew to hate bullies. I have this attitude even to this day. Most of the boys weren’t malicious but they just preferred that the attention be on someone else. From about twenty boys who would gather at lunch and breaks I would say there were only five who were genuinely malicious.
Thankfully, after leaving school H started going to the gym and became well built and muscular, they wouldn’t dare to mock him now. This theme of redemption is included in my book, The Fire Mage.
Peer pressure is very strong during the teenage years and nobody wants to stand out fearing they would become the focus of ridicule and bullying.
Studying For GCSEs
As the years went by I started studying intensely for my GCSEs. I particularly enjoyed Humanities and English Literature, I remember studying An Inspector Calls, Animal Farm and Romeo and Juliet. Shakespeare was a genius and the greatest writer in the English language. He had such foresight that themes he wrote about hundreds of years ago are relevant to this day. Have you experienced or seen bullying? Please share your experiences.