March 27, 2007

Eighth Grade Incident

Filed under: Random Crap — Katrina @ 6:30 pm

Gather around, friends, and I shall tell you a story. It happened ten years ago yesterday, on March 26, 1997. I was in eighth grade.

I was in my fourth period class, shop class (or “tech ed” as it was also known as). The first half of the year that class period was art, now in to the second half it was tech ed. Much preferred art. Oh, well.

Anyway, as you can imagine if you know me personally, I got picked on a lot in middle school. I was an easy target. Lonely. Weird. Small. Frizzy hair. You name it. And my grades sucked, so it’s not like I was like the picked on, teacher’s pet, perfect student who’d go on to employ these people later on. I was past my seventh grade plummet and was down to mediocre at best academically. To this day, never quite climbed out of it.

Guys in this class teased me a lot. Same guys who teased me the previous two years, and as time went by teasing got worse. I got mad now and then, then tuned it out, then got mad again.

Teacher did nothing. He didn’t even care, even after I had asked him to do something. Teachers in every other class at the very least said something. This one did not want to be bothered with it and seemed pissed at me for even suggesting it to him. Oh, well.

One day, the teasing was especially bad. I was just trying to work on the stupid little wooden car I was supposed to make. I don’t recall exactly all the events that led up to it, but I know that much. Something they were doing was making me particularly angry that day. They might have been trying to mess with my car. I don’t know. And, of course, still no help from the idiot teacher. Just wandered the room a bit and was idly glancing at some tools in a bin, trying to take my mind off it.

Class was over and it was time for lunch. Walking down the hallway, the guys were following me and still taunting. Eventually, most of them wandered elsewhere, leaving this one guy, the biggest one, probably three times my size, still saying shit. A friend of his who wasn’t even in the class came and joined him. They came up to me and were all trying to intimidate me. Sure enough, even though the hallway was full of people, nobody seemed to notice this.

Not sure what this huge guy was trying to do, I swung my arm at him (and missed). Then, as I started to walk away, he reached down and grabbed my leg. He pulled my leg up and let go, and then I crashed down hard onto the floor. I heard the two guys running away, laughing.

I smacked my head and my left wrist pretty hard on the floor. I stood up, and I realized I couldn’t even see. My vision had gone completely blurry and yellow, kind of like there were lots of yellow clouds in front of my eyes. Then I passed out, slamming once more on the hard hallway floor.

School staff at least were paying attention now and helped me stand up. My vision cleared again at least. While they were walking me towards the school nurse, I threw up into a trash can. On the way, I had spotted a friend of mine and said hi, but the staff woman just told my friend to keep walking and not pay any attention. I got to the nurse and I was then lying on a couch in there. I couldn’t even think straight. Concussion. Around that time, the principal and someone else came in and started asking me questions about the incident. In my muddled state, I’m not even sure what I told her. Told her the names of the boys involved and the events that led up to it, but I was so disoriented I kept thinking it was all my fault and said so.

The nurse, or at least someone filling in for the nurse, called my home number and got no answer. Of course, I told her, my parents were at work. So she told me to call my mom. So I did. Why she didn’t just do it herself, I don’t know. Whatever. Told mom there was an incident and to come pick me up. She arrived eventually (she said she sat at her desk crying for a while before she actually left work to come pick me up, heh). She talked to the principal and other people (rather pissed that they had questioned me while I was still all messed up). Eventually, we left the school and she took me to the hospital.

Sat in ER for a while. They eventually gave me a CAT scan. Everything was fine. My left wrist was sprained, though, so they wrapped that up. Went home after a while. Just trying to chill out from all that had happened. I was scared and jittery for the rest of the day. Was fine by the next day, at least. Missed school that day, and that was the last day before Easter break anyway, so then got a whole week off after that.

Meanwhile, my mom was trying to get stuff about this incident straightened out. The shop teacher was trying to say I had made threats about the guy during class (he assumed when I had wandered over to the tool bin, that’s what it was about!). The other staff had decided the incident was my fault, based on my concussion-induced ramblings immediately afterward, and that because I had swung at him, I had started it. The guy’s punishment was, oh, nothing, since he had to live in fear for the rest of the day after an 85 pound 13-year-old girl about half his height swung her arm in his general direction. They seemed very uninterested in the harassment that led up to it. Nope. I swung my arm, so that made him the victim.

I was pulled out of that class, at least, and spent the fourth period for the rest of the year as a study hall with my Algebra teacher. Much nicer.

10 Comments

  1. Ouch, that’s terrible! 🙁 Try making their insults light-hearted banter – “yeah, you know, there’s a funny story about that hunchback on a hunchback on a wart…” “Yeah, I know, I’ve been meaning to do something about that…”. Probably late advice. Oh well.
    You know the folks at NYRA love ya, though!

    Comment by Conor — March 27, 2007 @ 7:11 pm

  2. Hey, I wish I had thought to at the time. Oh, well. Live and learn.

    Comment by Katrina — March 27, 2007 @ 9:43 pm

  3. I’m so sorry, Kat. Did things get better in high school?

    Comment by Pamela — March 27, 2007 @ 11:45 pm

  4. Or just be insanely witty and single out one person so his friends laugh at him and ignore you.

    Though 25% of the time that just makes it worse.

    *sigh* *rubs ribs*

    All I insinuated is that he enjoys staring at huge penises.

    *sigh*

    Comment by Chip — March 27, 2007 @ 11:48 pm

  5. Oh, that’s horrible. 🙁

    Comment by Tempus Fugit — March 28, 2007 @ 3:26 pm

  6. Pam: no, things actually got worse in high school. Just makes me more glad I got out early.

    Comment by Katrina — March 28, 2007 @ 6:21 pm

  7. Hurrah for leaving school early.

    Comment by Pamela — March 28, 2007 @ 9:58 pm

  8. Wow same for me except for frizzy hair

    Comment by Jonathan — March 29, 2007 @ 12:17 am

  9. Reminds me of what I went through in fourth grade. It is absolutely disgusting that bullying like this is allowed to continue at our schools. People like those idiots would be sent to jail if they were adults. If I were in charge of schools, bullies would be treated like the real criminals they are.

    Comment by Cyb3rdemon — April 2, 2007 @ 5:48 pm

  10. […] Not to mention the mental anguish and fear after such an incident. I know all about it since a very similar thing happened to me in 8th grade. And sure enough, after that incident, I felt ashamed and terrified and somehow responsible. […]

    Pingback by National Youth Rights Association - Age of Reason: the NYRA Blog — April 13, 2009 @ 3:16 pm

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