For context, I’m almost 40 now. And I still cry and shake about school. I hate school. I hated it then, and I hate it now. I hate is cos it’s shit. I can’t believe parents send their kids there. As a child, I experienced my parents sending me to school every day when I was clear I hated it, as evidence my parents didn’t love me. They told me (as I was so often told as a child) that I would understand when I grew up. Well, im a grown up now, and (as is so often the case) I do not understand.
As an adult, I developed PTSD following a racist sexual assault by the police in Leeds. Well, three sexual assaults in one night, cos when you’ve got a young woman locked up, make the most out of her right? And now I “have PTSD”, I see that I have it about school too. That I had it at the time, and that my parents refusal to take it seriously and continuous repetitions of bollocks like “stick and stones” fundamentally undermined my relationship with my parents, but also with authority, and also with humans in general.
Going to a place like school from when you’re 5 to 22 (in my case) where all you see is bullying, where the teachers are weak morons you have to “respect” for some reason, and all other kids are either bullying you or letting the bullying happen, this affects your view of the world.
As an adult, I ditched my family. It’s not easy, and I knew it wouldn’t be. But I have wanted to ditch them for a really long time. So I’m telling parents: if your kids are being bullied at school, take them out. Today. Never, ever send them back to that place again. Do not “work with the school”, that’s code from the school to “cover this up cos it looks bad in offsted reports”. “Working with the school” involves you and your child’s teachers convincing your child they are wrong and to live with the bullying.
So I never want to see another parent on twitter telling me their kid is being bullied and retweet their photo to show them they’re loved. They aren’t loved, and they know it. If your child is being bullied, and you send them back to school, you don’t love them, they know it, and maybe you’ll get away with it while they’re young, but as an adult, ditching parents becomes an imperative if you have known since you were at school they don’t love you and won’t protect you.
As a side note, it doesn’t do much for your child’s general views of “the other” as an adult either. I have no respect or trust for teachers, doctors, vicars, or anyone else. When I was a kid I knew more than my teachers, said so, and was heavily punished. As an adult I maintain: I knew more than them, and if your kid knows more than their teachers, get better teachers, don’t blame the kids. So don’t be like my parents, cos apparently they really mind being dumped and having no contact with me. But I don’t give a fuck.
Don’t be like them. If someone is hurting your child, do something about it. Not doing anything makes you worse then the abuser. And they won’t forgive you. They will probably learn not to bother confiding in you any more and to keep their mouth shut and get through it, as I did. And the schools and teachers all claimed me as a great success cos I can pass exams like a blue arsed fly. Well you know what, school & teachers: I passed those exams in spite of you. I’d have passed a lot more without you constantly wasting my time with rubbish like “school”. And if your pupils are cleverer than you and know more: don’t take it out on us. We aren’t intelligent to piss you off, and we can’t switch it on and off.
(Postscript: As a half-dirty-foreigner in today’s racist Tory England, I’d also like to stick it to the English and say: in my experience, bullying at school is a uniquely English thing. It happens, in other countries, but it’s dealt with. Only the English fetishise and kowtow to bullies to this extent, because we/you are all Nazis at heart)